Tuesday, September 25

Creativity & Innovation (Mycoted Thinking Repository!)

Home: http://www.mycoted.com/Main_Page
Tools (184): http://www.mycoted.com/Category:Creativity_Techniques
Puzzles (58): http://www.mycoted.com/Category:Puzzles

Mycoted is dedicated to improving Creativity and Innovation for solving problems worldwide, with that in mind, they provide a central repository for Creativity and Innovation on the Internet as a summary of tools, techniques, mind exercises, puzzles, book reviews etc, that is open to all - and can be written by all (Yes, Wikis rules!).

(Mycoted is a small UK company which offers a range of services to assist in creativity and innovation.)

If you find this repository insufficient, you could also explore the Mindtools site, which is perhaps more comprehensive and known (+4.2 Million visitors a year). But to be honest, I find this repository simpler to find juicy thinking tools (Not so cluttered! It also gives you a bit of white space to think.). Mindtools gets you excited first, but then you often have to pay for the real juice. It is simply a big turn-off! Also, they could be a bit more creative like using a Wiki to invite others to share (or co-create) new thinking tools.

Though, it is worth subscribing to the free Mindtools newsletter by the always dynamic James Manktelow. Overall, I recommend that (or challenge) James and Mindtools explore the creative challenge to share all their resources (or thinking tools) for free, and at the same time make 10 times more money. Think Blue Ocean :)

The Mycoted creativity techniques (tools) repository consists of more than 180 different (Currently, 184 to be precise!), which are listed in alphabetical order (A-Z). In addition, you can access the tools according to categories (still under construction!). Below is a list of a few thinking tools that I have tried, and would recommend:

Of course, there are many more wonderful and complex tools (e.g. TRIZ) in the repository, but the above mentioned ones do not require much learning (as far as I know), before you can facilitate some juicy creative and critical thinking out of yourself or your team.

Also, you can find many interesting thinking puzzles (58) to exercise the brain muscle and have fun (mainly lateral thinking!) . How many faces can you see in the image?

If that is not enough, you could always check out the nutty quotes by famous people in the past. Here are a few that gives us hope!

  • "I think there is a world market for maybe five computers." - Thomas Watson, chairman of IBM, 1943
  • "Who the hell wants to hear actors talk?" --H. M. Warner, Warner Brothers, 1927.
  • "Everything that can be invented has been invented." - Charles H. Duell, Commissioner, U.S. Office of Patents, 1899.
  • "640K ought to be enough for anybody." - Bill Gates, 1981

Yes, if you have said or done something stupid you need not worry, because you might be the next Bill Gates! In other words, don't be afraid to think-out-loud, explore, learn, reflect, and ask for feedback. Failure provides us with great opportunities to really succeed (if we keep on trying creatively). So, celebrate noble failure (Motorola does, if I am not mistaken).

As we are increasingly moving into the global innovation driven economy, we have no choice but to beef up our creative, critical and innovative thinking skills. We all have tremendous ability, and by using some of the thinking tools we can perhaps get a little upper-hand (at least against those that don't) were possible.

However, thinking tools is not enough, and the greatest thinkers throughout time can testify to this. You also need to continuously explore, digest, learn, and individually/collaboratively reflect new (and old) information and knowledge, as this is the fuel to great new ideas, inventions, products and services. The thinking tools can speed up the output process, but you still need a lot of knowledge fuel as input (if you want to produce really wonderful ideas!). No, Google is not enough! Our brain works in funny ways when we understand and digest knowledge. Our sometimes amazing practical intelligence or gut feeling ability is often a result of all the knowledge (and wisdom) we have learned in the past.

Finally, I will end this post (or it will go on and on!), by sharing a few more excellent quotes to think about:

  • "If you can dream it, you can do it." - Walt Disney.
  • "Problems cannot be solved by thinking within the framework in which the problems were created." -- Albert Einstein.
  • "Creativity is the ability to see relationships where none exist." - Thomas Disch
  • None of us are as smart as all of us." - Japanese proverb
  • "Everything that irritates us about others can lead us to an understanding of ourselves." - Carl Jung.
  • "Without problems there would be no reason to improve." - Benjamin C Jones.

"Seek Knowledge from the Cradle to the Grave."
- Prophet Muhammed (pbuh)



Sheae said...

Creativity is thinking up new things. Innovation is doing new things. ~
Theodore Levitt
Innovation quotes

Zaid Ali Alsagoff said...

Dear Sheae,

Thanks for sharing the quote.

However, based on my humble understanding creativity is more than just thinking up new things, as it involves also doing things in a creative manner.

Also, as far as I know innovation is about doing new things that generate some form of value (not just doing new things!). Usually the value creation from innovation has some form of business, process, product, service or monetary value.

Finally, we have invention, which is creating new things that did not exist before (example the car, plane, electricity, etc).

But then again I am sure Theodore Levitt has his own interpretation, and how can I argue against that :)

But thanks for sharing this mind awakening quote :)

Warm Regards,