Sunday, September 15, 2013

Inventing advice from good old Tom Edison

I found a fun blog--it's called Imagineer 7. Check it out:

There is one long entry on Thomas Edison--you know, the lightbulb guy. Well, he actually had 1,093 patents. He tinkered around and built a phonograph, motion picture camera, talking doll, concrete house, you name it.

See what you can do if you don't have a TV--he didn't invent that and no one else had either.

He believed in quantity. He set a quota of one minor invention every 10 days and a major one every six months.

One tip: Initial ideas are usually poorer in quality than later ones.

Edison believed in challenging all assumptions. He thought his lack of formal education was a plus--he leaped into everything with enthusiasm. He offered new employees soup--if they seasoned it without tasting, they were assuming it would not be salty enough--he did not hire them.

The key is take an assumption, reverse it, and to make the second version work. All restaurants have menus--so create one with no menu. What if the diners told the chef what foods they liked and he created dishes based on those foods?

He never let a failure go to waste. He recorded all of them--sometimes he could use the failed idea somewhere else.

Now--truth time. Edison did not invent the lightbulb--be he did make it commercially practical.

Read the article--more cool stuff within.