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Saturday, October 06, 2007

Forgetfulness, Tinkering and Increasing Noise - A sure shot strategy for Innovation

The new way for evolutinary innovation is following - in fact thats how our brain also functions (as per recent evidence)

1. FORGETFULNESS - I keep on quoting this from Khalil Gibran "Remembrance is a form of meeting and forgetfulness is a form of freedom" - well the article in New Scientist suggests that our mind becomes free for new things by using forgetfulness as a tool

2. CREATE MORE NOISE - I also keep on quoting from Hofstadter's Metamagical Themas - we need to explore non-sensible to create something new. Well the new theory suggests thats exactly how brain learns by creating more noise. We can observe this - people who goes to variety of expriences, travel a lot - either physically or mentally (for example voracious readers) have larger experince base to learn and hence create more.

3. TINKERING - Hostadter says "Creativity is a variation on a basic theme" - nothing but tinkering from existing concepts, processes and changing few knobs and seeing what happens and then doing some more - suddenly a new things emerges - this I call the continuous experimentation. Well the Kaizens are also considered tinkering.

So the Innovators of the world - Forget repeated similar experiences, create more dissimilar experiences - noise, and tinker continuously with whatever you are doing - This is recipe for continuous innovation.

Evolutionary Approach to Innovation

The forthcoming paper in IBM Systems Journal titled A Model for CIO led innovation brings to the forefront the people centric model of leveraging all minds in the enterprise for innovation. This is what Toyota has been practicing however not necessarily through collaborative technologies as IBM model has played out but through non-automated people based processes that focus on problem solving by the people who are facing it - then the Kaizen sessions in a way are real collaborative problem solving methods.

Similary in the product design methods - for example Toyota's Set-based Concurrent Engineering is nothing but an evolutionary approach to product design.

The Elegant Solution by Mathew May also points to the evolutionary approach to product design.

How ever as I explained in my paper in TRIZCON the evolutinary approach still miss out on how to solve problem and defining problem comprehensively where in TRIZ is fantastic - in fact I am yet to find a more powerful approach then TRIZ. Henc my proposal is for a combination of TRIZ with evolutionary approach (set-based concurrent engineering).

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