Freemind/Freeplane to Latex Beamer

Last Update: 2016-10-02

Feemind 2 Beamer is a xsl filter to convert Freemind/Freeplane mind maps into PDF slides. It is a WYMIWYG (What You Mean is What You Get) approach and can be a very efficient alternative to WYSIWYG products  PowerPoint or Keynote.

Last features are oriented towards the compatibility with Freeplane 1.3.x series. Testing for version 1.5.x...

Github Repository:

Freeplane is a feature rich fork of freemind. You can get it in: 

New features: 
  • Table of Contents (toc) option added in main attributes
  • Compatibility with Freeplane 1.3.x
  • Cloud-> block feature added.
  • Freeplane Latex equation hook compatibility

Former  features;
  • Added Feature: PDF metadata included (Title and Author)
  • Added Feature: Some cleanup in the generated PdfLatex code.
  • Added Feature: Figure captions (By: Rodrigo Goya)
  • Added Feature: Variable column width ("leftcolumnwidth" attribute)
  • Added Feature: Framestyle generic options included
  • Added Feature: Appendix mode allowed
  • Added Feature: subtitle, author , institute and date attributes in main node
  • Added Feature: "unescape characters" (any LaTeX character allowed)
  • Added Feature: Compatibility with Saxon
  • Added Feature: Ported to XSLT 2.0
  • 1.97
  • Added Feature: Beamer theme can be selected as attribute. The new generated tex file doesn't need any master doc if standard themes are used.

How to build PDF slides directly from Freeplane/Freemind.

For those who rather write down their ideas on a mindmap form than using classical text structures, tools to convert these maps into documents or slides for presentations can be very useful. Here, you have a way to do the whole process using Open Source elements in the whole process. If you want to get slide and presentations that can compete with the best Power Point presentation and you want to do it directly from Freeplane/Freemind, then just follow these instructions.


  • Clouds are converted to Latex blocks (4th level)
  • Freeplane: Compatible with inserted Latex equations
  • Images in full slide or two columns
  • Freemind notes as text without bullets.
  • Richcontent compatibility
  • Long texts managed by Freemind as HTML text.
  • Attributes to set [allowframebreaks,shrink,plain,squeeze] options in slides
  • Figure captions
  • Variable column width ("leftcolumnwidth" attribute)
  • Framestyle generic options
  • Appendix mode
  • Subtitle, author and date attributes in main node
  • unescape characters (any LaTeX character allowed)

How to proceed

  1. You can downlad Freeplane in:

  2. Convert a Freemind file into a Latex Beamer content file through mm2latexbeamer_richcontent.xsl  available in the Attachments section or in the Gihub repo.

  3. The main tex file is called to set the Latex Beamer configuration. You can change all these settings according to your needs. More information about Latex Beamer in:

  4. To compile and the the final PDF you have tu run Pdftex. If you are working on a Windows platform, you can download Miktex ( for this task. Most of the Linux distributions come with a built in Latex and Pdftex compiler.

  5. If you are looking for a nice Latex editor I recommend TexStudio. It includes many nices features and is compatible with most operating systems.


Attributes can be added to the freemind nodes in order to get more flexibility with beamer style or LaTeX parameters. These attributes have been already implemented:

First level node:
  • Attribute Name "appendix" value: "whatever" adds an Appendix under "whatever" name.
  • theme: value "name.sty". Style  definition
  • author: author name
  • subtitle: subtitle text
  • institute: company name
  • date: date, \today puts automatically the current date
  • toc: "yes" enables initial Table of Contents

Third level node:
  •    framestyle: plain, shrink, squeeze, allowframebreaks and any other like "t" (top)
  •    leftcolumnwidth: number between 0 and 1 (variable columns when images are combined with bullets)
  •    backgroundpicture: path_to_the_picture
  •    backgroundcolor: colorname
Fourth level node:
  • caption: caption text (used as caption for figures, it is not the typical LaTeX "\caption" command. Instead, it is just a text below the figure.
  • width: image width value (e.g: 0.8\textwidth)
  • height: image height value
  • scale: scaling value value
  • cloud: If this node is "clouded" , "block" environment will be applied to the node content.


The following files show an example of the  freemind source file and  the resulting PDF slides.

Note: This work is based on the previous work of Joerg Feuerhake who made the original xsl file. You can find it in: