[Feature Request] curved, shaped, or freehand connectors between notes

Scrapple is just great, simple to use, helps with thinking and best of all recording my ideas :smiley:
But please can we have lines with angle or curves?

My ideas tend to need lots of many-to-many connections and having straight lines running through the diagram makes things confusing. Making duplicates of the notes just doesn’t work for my stuff.

Once I have more than a few notes on the board I spend more time rearranging to keep connections clear than I spend thinking. :frowning:

Here you go:


It would be cool if in later iterations of Scapple curvy lines were incorporated in lieu of just straight lines to connect idea bubbles. Just makes for a more organic look, and matches other mind mapping software out there like Mindnode Pro.

First off, let me say that I love Scrapple. It is just what I wanted, having struggled to develop interrelated concept development trajectory diagrams in mind-mapping software (which insists on the “central concept” start box).
But I’d like to request curved connectors. Having used this for serious concept modelling, it can be very difficult to accommodate a high density of interconnected concepts with only straight-line connectors. If you could provide the option of a drag point on the connector, that could be turned into a curve (or even an angle) when selected, this would make the diagrams a whole lot more flexible.
Curved and angled connectors would allow concepts to be clustered more easily, while retaining interconnections between them. The ability to arrange ideas in clusters is important, as it discourages the “let’s reduce the number of concepts to achieve straight-line hierarchies” tendency that I see in my students … :slight_smile:

Here is a response on this from the developer.


If I’m overlooking the obvious, please point me to it, if not…

I was wondering if it is possible to add a ‘waypoint’ to a connection, and then have the connection line become ‘fluid’?
Don’t remember exactly from which application, must be some mind map application, I think Freemind + Freeplane have it, but I have grown used of it and most of all it makes maps much more organic, fluid.

Is this possible with Scapple yet?
If not, might it be considered as a future feature?


I’m not sure what that means in practical terms, but you can double-click on a connection line to add a note in between two others.

Hi Amber,

Thanks for hopping in!
I’m aware of the feature to add a note between two others.

I’ve attached a couple of screenshots to better illustrate. (Tinderbox and Freeplane (Freemind))
I’m mainly interested in:

  • connection ‘shape’, specifically the modification from ‘hard straight line’ to more curved, organic
  • inter-connecting notes between 2 different scapple files. (connection from scapple A to scapple B)


tinderbox links.png

Ah I see what you mean. There aren’t any plans for curved lines, algorithmic or with Bezier controls. But I’d say if anything the former is more likely than the latter, given the aim of the software being about not having too many controls and nodes to click on.

So glad to see both Scapple and Scrivener updated.
I use Scapple quite a lot.
I try other concept map type apps but keep coming back to the simplicity of Scapple (literally each and every time!)
The latest update with the ability to label connecting lines is very welcome.
For me, there is only one more feature I would like to see - curved connecting lines.
There are many cases where it makes sense to have two connecting lines between two notes.
At present the only way to show this is to fake things by placing a new note on the existing connecting line (thus breaking it in two) and using that note as the line’s label (which was required in any case before the current update.)

While this shows the two connections it looks clunky as it requires different note styles to differentiate the fake connection label from the real notes and all connections remain straight lines.
Whereas curved connections would provide…

I also realise curved connecting lines is a non trivial addition.
But hoping it can be considered.



Curved lines would certainly be nice, and I don’t rule them out, but as you note, it’s definitely not a trivial addition. To be honest, I’m not sure my trigonometry is up to it (I’m not even sure I mean trigonometry!). :slight_smile: The problem is larger than just applying a curve, because for curved lines to make sense, there would probably also need to be some sort of collision detection: getting a line from one note to another and avoiding other notes on the way. Your own example perhaps doesn’t require that, but that most likely requires another fairly complex addition: the ability to drag lines into a curve. That would be quite cool (I can see it working sort of like Photohop’s Curves feature, perhaps) but would require new mechanisms to trigger such a drag, some complex calculations, and then some way of storing the curve data in the file format.

I’ll definitely put it on the list for future consideration, but I’m afraid it’s unlikely to be added soon because of the difficulties involved.

Thanks and all the best,

many thanks for your thoughtful reply.

What about connections with right angles? I’d be shocked if this isn’t one of, if not the top request

I use a blank note (a blank space) or two to create right angles.

IMO, curved lines and right angles are things I’ll never need using this product. I can get that from more advanced graphing programs like Affinity Designer or Omnigraffe. However, speed that I get with Scapple is unmatched and makes it approach using paper. I have a feeling adding too much detail to connecting notes can create slowness either in use or the application itself.


… not to discourage new features, but PLEASE keep it simple and quick.

It would be very useful to be able to draw on my scapple background. For example I would like to share a mind map, and showing the general flow of the ideas could be best be accomplished by drawing a curved line. My time consuming workaround is to save the .scap as a .pdf, then use a pdf editing program to draw.
I wanted to attach a very simple example, but not allowed because I am a “new user.” Silly restriction.
Processing: 4.2.4 - Transformation and transparency- Resonance.scap…

Have you tried searching the forum for “curved line” in the Scapple section yet? You should find there has been quite a bit of discussion on the matter over the years, and that overall the answer has been that there are no plans to add this.

Thank you, Amber. Didn’t search very well before posting. I see it is something that is not going to happen.

could it be possible to have connected notes look like tree branches not only straight lines?
Can we add graphical option’s (straight line, tree branches, curve for the visualization of those connected notes?
Best regards

I am pretty sure the answer is “it doesn’t currently do that.”

Instead of having a straight line from one object to another, it would be very helpful to be able to shape the connector path so that we could steer a connector around objects. Curved connectors instead of just straight lines would be bonus.

It would also be nice to have a connector point back to itself. For instance, if I am doing a flow chart I may want a connector labeled “No” (as in a decision) that returns to the same node.