You have a problem. You gather a group of smart, creative people and say, Let's brainstorm. Together, you bounce around a bunch of ideas, whittling and honing them until you arrive at it: The Solution.
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How's NaNoWriMo going? Do you have 20 per cent of a novel on your hard drive yet? If not, maybe you're having trouble thinking of what to write. Fortunately, there's a place on nanowrimo.org that is full of ideas ripe for the stealing.
Predicting the future is near impossible -- but that doesn‘t stop us all from having a red hot go. Human beings have been predicting the future since the beginning of history and the results range from the hilarious to the downright uncanny.
One thing all future predictions have in common: they‘re rooted in our current understanding of how the world works. It‘s difficult to escape that mindset. We have no idea how technology will evolve, so our ideas are connected to the technology of today.
Elevator Pitch is a regular feature on Lifehacker where we profile startups and new companies and pick their brains for entrepreneurial advice. This week, we're talking with Jack Zhang, co-founder and CEO of cross-border payment platform Airwallex.
I spent 10 years "writing" a TV show about Silicon Valley. I spent hundreds of hours talking about it, collecting ideas in a giant Evernote file, brainstorming the soundtrack -- but not much time writing it. Because every time I thought I had a handle on it, I thought of a better version. Over the years, I adapted my unwritten pilot into an unwritten book, movie, web series and comic strip. I chased every idea at once, until the project loomed grand and unwieldy in my head. I was building up a mountain of idea debt.
We feel that time is precious, and we shouldn't waste it. We often try and fill the void with carefully-planned tasks. But turning down the volume on life can be extremely beneficial. We fight against boredom, distraction and procrastination all the time, but that doesn't mean you should get rid of them completely.
Putting limits on your brainstorming may seem counterproductive, but it actually helps you get your ideas flowing. The Japanese game of shiritori is an easy way to guide your brainstorming session, whether you're looking for ideas for a new project, book or physical product.
Nearly all great ideas follow a similar creative process, and this article explains how this process works. Understanding this is important because creative thinking is one of the most useful skills you can possess. Nearly every problem you face in work and in life can benefit from creative solutions, lateral thinking and innovative ideas.
Van Gogh may now be widely recognised as one of the most influential and creative artists of all time, but he died alone and penniless. Why? Because 100 years ago his canvas' were seen as the hallucinatory original works of a sociopathic recluse. It wasn't until years later, when other artists and critics had defined a new aesthetic criteria for art, that his works were accepted as creative masterpieces.