“How to Spot the Future,” an article by Thomas Goetz posted on Wired.com from April of this year, outlines a list of seven rules to follow when looking for the path to new, great innovations. ACE students will be familiar with innovating, since they’ve just had a highly successful ACE Innovation last month and are always testing the bounds of their own creativity and inventiveness.
In short form, here are the rules as outlined in the article:
- Look for cross-pollinators. The best ideas are transferable – one industry can transform another.
- Surf the exponentials. Take notice of the trends of the smaller, better, and faster and then channel this energy as it continues to spiral out.
- Favor the liberators. Notice an industry or system that if untethered, could open new doors. An example would be the great liberation of music from CDs to MP3 files.
- Give points for audacity. Rather than focusing on incremental, small problems, tackle big problems with big ideas in order to spur progress.
- Bank on openness. Open platforms, open source – banking on openness allows for greater collaboration and communication among users.
- Demand deep design. Streamline information when designing, allowing for better clarity and better understanding.
- Spend time with time wasters. Where are people spending time when they don’t have to be? Look in these places for innovation. Hackathons, for example.
What about these steps are relevant to ACE students and their ways of thinking about creating? What are some examples of these rules can you think of in real life and in your own inventions and ideas?