Saturday, May 2, 2009

Silly rabbit, TRIZ is for Innovation!

What is TRIZ? TRIZ is the Russian acronym for “Theory of Inventive Problem Solving”. Soviet engineer and researcher Genrich Altshuller and his colleagues developed the methodology in 1946 and for the next 40 years improved its design. TRIZ is the science of the study of the patterns of problems and solutions. Millions of patents were analyzed to discover patterns that led to breakthroughs solutions to the specific problems.

The three primary research processes to create TRIZ were as follows:

1. Problems and solutions are repeated across industries and sciences. The classification of the contradictions in each problem predicts the creative solutions to that problem.
2. Patterns of technical evolution are repeated across industries and sciences.
3. Creative innovations use scientific effects outside the field where they were developed.

TRIZ looks to be based on a resolution of contradictions. TRIZ has 40 principles that look to solve the contradictions. Using these known 40 principles (solutions) in new challenges can bring innovative solutions. My understanding is that all innovated creations can be found in the matrix of these 40 principles.

A possible example of TRIZ is the creation of the TWEEL (combination of tire and wheel) and the solution to flat tires. The original tire had an inner tube. Once the inner tube is punctured, the tire is useless until the inner tube is replaced or repaired. This led to the invention of the tubeless tire that we are use to today. Michelin then abstracted this one level up and combined the tire and the wheel. Using a non-inflated tire and the wheel then lightly compresses to give a comfortable ride.

For further information refer to,, and The matrix of the 40 principles is available for download. Specific industries have applied to their unique needs.

Special thanks to Jack Hipple, Principle of He was a presenter at the Atlanta Creativity Exchange and is an authority on this subject.

Sources:, Innovation-TRIZ,,, and

Monday, April 13, 2009

Idea Mapping by Jamie Nast

Idea Mapping by Jamie Nast - 2006

Above is my Mind Map of Jamie Nast's book Idea Mapping published in 2006. This is a classic book detailing Jamie's version of Mind Mapping. It gives the basics of Mind Mapping as well as examples in personal and business life. It is insightful, educational, and gets the user up and running on the concepts in short order. It does include a 30 day version of Mindjet's Mindmanager version 6 (they are currently on version 8).
Julie Nast's website is

Saturday, April 11, 2009

World Creativity and Innovation Week April 15 - 21

World Creativity and Innovation week begins April 15th (Leonardo da Vinci's birthday) and end April 21. This conference takes place in Toronto, Canada and is geared towards artists, creative thinkers and innovators. As they state on their website: ". . . is a celebration of our ability to get new ideas, use imagination and make new decisions to make the world a better place and to make your place in the world better too. "

Having attended the Atlanta Creativity Exchange on March 27th & 28th, I learned so much in just a day and a half. But there was so much more to discuss that a week of attending different breakout sessions and meeting people from all over the world to discuss different techniques and methodologies is what I need. Thus if I could, I would be there. I am going to plan on next year's meeting.

Here is a sampling of what will take place:
  • Living Like Leonardo at the AGO Wednesday April 15
  • Admit it You’re Creative at the Centre for Social Innovation Thursday April 16
  • Mindcamp Idea Tasting at the Verity Club Saturday April 18
  • Share your Creativity and Innovation Story Tuesday April 21

For those who get a chance to attend, I wish you well and wish that I was there with you.

Friday, April 10, 2009

First Post

I learned of Mind Mapping in the mid 90's when I was a senior consultant on a ERP project. During my first meeting in the boardroom with the client, I happened to sit down next to the firm's VP in charge of the project. He turned his notepad sideways and drew a big circle and wrote the client's name and date in the circle. He then drew a branch from the circle and titled it Introduction. He continued to draw branches and sub-branches with key words on each branch and sub-branch.

After the meeting, I was amazed at the artistic notes that he had made and asked what was that he had done. He told me that he always mind maps his notes. Intrigued, I asked him to explain Mind Mapping. He told me to go to the library and check out Tony Buzan's book "The Mind Map Book". After work, I hurried to the library and checked out the book. I read the book cover-to-cover and then went out to buy the book. I was hooked.

I had always been interested in different ways of organizing thoughts and brainstroming (having been raised on outlining), my friend's dad had the program "Think Tank" and I was amazed at what outlining could do for your thought generation. But when I found Mind Mapping, this opened up my mind to be more right-brained. I grew up always thinking logically and did not develop my artistic ability. Now I was going to work on that side of my head.

Since that day, I have developed my own paper templates for mindmapping my meeting notes that feed into project lists then to action lists. I am getting ready to take this methodology commercial soon.