Хороший онтологический (конструальный, от construal, пробую термины) текст, поскольку так называемая «креативность» — это и есть онтологическая (конструальная) инженерия.
THE UNIFYING PRINCIPLE IN CREATIVITY IS INCLUSIVE THINKING
Genius is often marked by the ability to imagine comparisons and similarities and even similar differences between parallel facts and events in different fields or “other worlds.” Why is X like Y? If X works in a certain way, why can’t Y work in a similar way? Alexander Graham Bell observed the comparison between the inner workings of the ear and the movement of a stout piece of membrane to move steel and conceived the telephone. Thomas Edison invented the phonograph, in one day, after developing an analogy between a toy funnel and the motions of a paper man and sound vibrations. Moreover, the way buzzards kept their balance in flight served as an analogy for the Wright brothers when maneuvering and stabilizing an airplane.
Your mind is lying in wait for some cue or suggestion that will initiate thinking about your problem in a different way. When you use analogies between your subject and a subject in another world you produce cues and hints that will make novel combinations and connections more likely. 14-year-old Philo Farnsworth’s interest in farming gave him the cue that led to television. One day, while sitting on a hillside in Idaho, he observed the neat rows in a nearby farm. The neat rows inspired the idea of creating a picture on a cathode ray tube out of rows of light and dark dots. He was 14 at the time, and the next year he presented his concept at a high-school science fair, and he also demonstrated the first working model of a television set when he was 21.
Most of us possess expert knowledge in some hobby, discipline, or special activity. You can create new ideas by transferring relationships and concepts from your area of special interest to your problem. For many years, physiologists could not understand the purpose of the long loops in the kidneys: it was assumed that the loops had no special function and were a relic of the way the kidney had evolved. Then one day a physiologist, with a special interest in engineering, looked at the loops and recognized that they could be part of a countercurrent multiplier, a well-known engineering device for increasing the concentration of solutions. His interest in engineering provided the answer to something that had been a medical puzzle for a long time. When you identify an idea in one area, you can then generate other complimentary ideas with similar dynamics in other areas. The guidelines are:
- Lists several concepts from your discipline or area of special interest. For example, if your interest is football, you might list such items as the Super Bowl, player free agency, TV contracts, Monday Night Football promotions, expansion franchises and so on.
- Select one and describe it in as much detail as you can. List the images and thoughts that it inspires. Then use each description to generate ideas. Look for similarities and connections between each description and your problem and draw analogies.
A heart surgeon became a fan of Edward Deming, the noted management consultant, and studied his industrial management techniques and attended his seminars. He convinced a group of heart surgeons to apply Deming’s techniques to their practice. By applying industrial management techniques to heart surgery, they learned how to share information about how they practiced and stopped functioning as individual craftspeople. They reduced the death rate among their patients by one/fourth.
There is a unifying principle in creativity dating all the way back to the “Big Bang.” Creativity is thinking inclusively and conceptually blending dissimilar subjects. You look for ways to include subjects in your thinking, not ways to exclude them. ‘This principle is found in all acts of creativity in all fields. Look at the similarities between the discover of the “law of continuity” by Leonardo da Vinci and de Mistral’s invention of Velcro.
Da Vinci blended two totally different systems. He associated the movement of water with the movement of human hair, thus becoming the first person to illustrate in extraordinary detail the many invisible subtleties of water in motion. His observations led to his all-important discovery of a fact of nature which came to be called the “Law of Continuity.” Similarly, de Mistral blended two different worlds, the world of vegetation (burrs) with the world of zippers to invent Velcro.
Samuel Morse, for example, became stumped trying to figure out how to produce a signal strong enough to be received over great distances. Larger generators were not enough. One day he saw tired horses being exchanged at a relay station. He made the connection between relay stations for horses and strong signals and solved the problem. The solution was to give the traveling signal periodic boosts of power. This made the coast-to-coast telegraph possible. Nickla Tesla made a connection between the setting sun and a motor. His insight was to have the motor’s magnetic field rotate inside the motor just as the sun (from our perspective) rotates and created the AC motor with electricity reversing direction many times per second.
Albert Einstein once famously remarked “Imagination is more important than knowledge. For knowledge is limited to all we now know and understand, while imagination embraces the entire world, and all there ever will be to know and understand.” All creators who have created change in the world understand what the imagination provides. Consider Louis Braille who created a way for the blind to read and write. He was blinded in both eyes as a result of a childhood accident. He mastered his disability but was distraught by his inability to read and write. One day he was playing with a pinecone and he observed that the spears were all different sizes. By feeling the shape of the object and touching the different spears he by touching he recognized the object. That was when he realized that a system of tactile code could teach the blind how to read and write quickly and efficiently. He constructed his revolutionary system in 1824. His system is known as Braille and has been adapted for use in languages worldwide.
I have a friend who delights in surf boarding. Over the years he became increasingly concerned about the danger sharks cause surfers. His hobby was reading about the military and the various wars. One day after surfing, he relaxed on the beach reading about the Normandy invasion. He was fascinated with how the allies used decoys such as rubber tanks, canvas ships, plywood aircraft, and even dummy soldiers to fool the Germans about where we secretly planned to land on D-Day. Consequently, Hitler became convinced that the landing would occur at Calais a hundred miles north of Normandy. Accordingly, he refused to order a counteroffensive at Normandy and the allies won WWII.
The success of using camouflage intrigued my friend. I challenged him to use his creativity and come up with a way to camouflage his surfboard. How could he use camouflage to hide a surfboard from sharks? He studied sharks and discovered they had terrific eyesight and were extremely cautious when searching for food. He discovered that they look for easy prey and sneak up on it from below and attack it before the prey is aware of its presence. He partnered with an artist and they painted two large evil-looking eyes on the bottom of a surfboard. Underwater, looking up at the bottom of the surfboard it looked like a large hostile fish looking down at you and getting ready to attack. The tests were amazing. As soon as sharks saw the camouflaged surfboard, they took off as fast as they could.
Why isn’t everyone creative? Why doesn’t education foster more ingenuity? Why is expertise often the enemy of innovation? Best-selling creativity expert Michael Michalko shows that in every field of endeavor, from business and science to government, the arts, and even day-to-day life — natural creativity is limited by the prejudices of logic and the structures of accepted categories and concepts. Through step-by-step exercises, illustrated strategies, and inspiring real-world examples he shows readers how to liberate their thinking and literally expand their imaginations by learning to synthesize dissimilar subjects, think paradoxically, and enlist the help of the subconscious mind. He also reveals the attitudes and approaches diverse geniuses share — and anyone can emulate. Fascinating and fun, Michalko’s strategies facilitate the kind of light-bulb moment thinking that changes lives — for the better.
Michael Michalko is the author of the highly acclaimed Thinkertoys: A Handbook of Creative Thinking Techniques; Cracking Creativity: The Secrets of Creative Genius; ThinkPak: A Brainstorming Card Deck and Creative Thinkering: Putting Your Imagination to Work. creativethinking.net/#sthash.SXV5T2cu.dpbs