Creative Process – More Notes from Doctorowing

I’ve been listening to Cory Doctorow’s podcast on the train and it is amazing how many ideas pop into your head when you hear a futurist and technologist — or at least a good one — speak.

Creative Process / Design Competitions

In a podcast today Cory talked about a game designer at IDEO that feels their is a failure in design competitions where a cash prize is held out for the “best idea.”  The reality is by definition the best idea is generated because the best people are competing and holding back their ideas from one another. 
By structuring the competition in another way this can be avoided.  For example if there is an open community board that works to solve the problem and the prize is awarded based on participation and quality of the ideas and commentary which is all recorded, then people will be open to collaborating.

Use of Twitter for Idea Generation

The growth of Twitter has surprised plenty of people but it shouldn’t.  It is simply the technology can be used so many ways that makes it so powerful.  From sharing banalities with friends, to being an easier way to blog, to idea generation.  Here is an obvious but solid Doctorow use:  Need a column idea for the Guardian?  Ask your twitter community and then re-tweet back the ideas that are the most interesting for a second level of comment.  The result, in 20 minutes really solid ideas are generated and vetted.

Application in Advertising and Digital Agencies

Idea generation in traditional agencies focuses on small sets of people iterating ideas in dark rooms.  In digital agencies the ideas tend to be more multidiscipline and include more brainstorms before documentation, but are still managed mostly without technology.  The big question is how can some of these ideas be applied without the “committee effect” that takes a nascent great idea for the horse, and turns it into a camel. 

Leave a Reply