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PDF Where Do Ideas Come From?

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If you fail to take an idea through all of these steps your idea may be worthless because it will never see the light of day. For more on that concept check out episode of the podcast. By this point you should realize that great ideas come from external stimulation and non-work experiences. Every day you should be doing things that generate ideas passively. Then stop looking through synonyms online and go somewhere like a grocery store or market.

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Places with many colors, smells, and people will get your creativity flowing. Have a system for documenting your ideas the second you have them. When I asked people what systems they used to document their ideas, most came back with physical systems. Post-it notes, moleskins, pen and paper, etc. They all said they carry them with them at all times though. Personally, the only thing other than my wallet that I carry around everywhere is my iPhone, so here are two of my favorite apps for documenting ideas. Whether you use a digital or analog tool, make sure you have a way to document your ideas quickly so you can get back to whatever it was you were doing.

This is especially true if your ideas are all over the place in your email inbox, on post-it notes, written on your hand, etc. If I have an idea for a blog post here at Think Traffic that is the section I put it under.


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If I have an idea for an episode of The Fizzle Show it goes in a different section. Figure out what each of the major categories of ideas that you may have are and then set aside some time once a week to sort through all of them. Not all ideas are great. Every time they go to their list of ideas they see ones that have been sitting there for over a year. Make a habit of going through your lists of ideas and culling out ones you are never going to use. It will only take a minute. We even talked about the importance of executing ideas a bit on this episode of The Fizzle Show. Ideas come when you least expect them to, so you need to document, organize, and cull them before you execute them as best you can.


  1. A Guide for Home Sellers.
  2. Where Do Good Ideas Come From? (Ep. 368);
  3. Il padre (Italian Edition);
  4. Where do YOUR best ideas come from? Which step of the idea process do you need to work on the most? Let us know in the comments below this post.


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    Co-inventor of SwitchPod. Start Your Day Free Trial. What makes a mind fertile? For one thing, it is the freedom to venture without the confines of traditional thinking or the burden of practical concerns. If a quantum system is probed too often, it tends to stay in the same state. The same is true for the mind of an individual if it is interrupted too often by others.

    Senior researchers aim to establish echo chambers in which their voices are heard loud and clear through their group members. This is an antidote to pregnancies with new ideas. Early career scientists might not fulfill their discovery potential if they accept the limits established by their mentors.

    Where Good Ideas Come From

    Innovation occurs when researchers deviate from group thinking or fashion. By its nature, persistent conservatism is ultimately doomed to a culture shock. We all know that this field will not be of use to them in their careers.

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    In hindsight this blunder might not be surprising. Think about how riders of horse-drawn carriages viewed Ford's Model T car or how the executives of Encyclopedia Britannica viewed Wikipedia in its early days. This explains why I tend to get ideas in the shower, because it offers me vacation time from interruptions associated with my duties as chair of an astronomy department and director of two centers.

    Without vacations from distractions, ideas are scarce. There are many alternatives to the shower that would offer the same fundamental benefit; vacations are sometimes defined by what they escape from more than by what they offer as a substitute. How could we cultivate an environment that nourishes ideas? The recipe starts with creating a culture that encourages informal questioning and inquiry, tolerates mistakes and promotes innovation. For example, the Socratic method of dialogues—which encouraged critical thinking and challenged authority—led to a rich literature of insights in philosophy and ethics, and is suitable also to science.

    But even fertile soil cannot guarantee blossoming vegetation without seeds.

    With close study, the genealogies of even the most original ideas can be traced

    How could we seed an academic environment with ideas? Ideas often originate from dialogues in which an individual hears about a challenge and recognizes a new path for solving it.

    Where Do Good Ideas Come From? (Ep. ) - Freakonomics Freakonomics

    It is therefore crucial to create a space in which challenges are discussed openly and without fear, stimulating new solutions. An excellent historic example was Bell Labs, which for decades in the midth century assembled creative physicists and engineers into a single corridor where their daily conversations led to radio astronomy and the discovery of the cosmic microwave background as well as inventions that include the transistor, photovoltaic cell, laser and CCD, along with many other breakthroughs.

    It is essential to include young people in the conversation, because they lack baggage and are willing to march into uncharted territories. The desire to create innovative environments extends well beyond academia because it carries great financial benefits to businesses, such as Amazon, Google, Apple, Microsoft or SpaceX. Yet the most beautiful discoveries in science occur for free and are not designed by corporate boards.

    It is well known that if you wish to obtain a traditional result with little variance, all you need to do is assemble a large committee; this outcome is guaranteed by the central limit theorem of statistics. Finally, a word of caution for innovators: it is not enough to plant the seeds.