At a conference several weeks ago, I sat next to a gentleman who was taking all his notes in Mind Manager. When I asked about it during a break, he said that mind mapping was built into the way people communicate at his company. I inferred that rather than spreading slide decks, people will send around mind maps and use them in meetings to create shared understanding. Having played with mind maps for a while, I could immediately see value in recording notes this way. So I gave it a whirl last week.
The biggest thing I realized is that there is still a lot of technique in recording notes via mind maps. It isn't as natural as recording to paper, where I have the ability to draw pictures and play with indentation / formatting to my heart's content. And straight typing into a text tool is fairly easy too. But then, it provides an alternate way to structure my understanding than I get from taking notes in a text-based tool on my laptop.
While speakers presented, I could capture their main points and then come back to each item to fill in as the speakers add further detail. One thing I found somewhat frustrating was thinking about structure of the map as I was attempting to hear what speakers were saying. I suspect this will improve as I become more facile with the tool. I'd also like to have a nice way to integrate graphics (like the infamous 2x2 matrix).
My main reason for taking notes in this kind of environment (conferences) is to come back to the topic at a later time and see if anything new strikes me. Frequently, I use these notes to help construct blog posts a day or two later. I think mind mapping could fit this need quite well. But I am also fairly happy with text-based electronic notes, and both modes lose the ability to easily capture graphics. Yes, I could draw things via the keyboard and mouse, but that generally requires too much effort while also listening to new materials
Note: I played with a tablet pc recently, and I could see a lot of potential for the way I'd like to take notes, as it combines handwriting recognition with any kind of graphic "artistry" I could muster.