correlate Rotating Header Image

February, 2009:

Creativity and New Ideas

IRVINE, CA - APRIL 23:   California monkey flo...

Image by Getty Images via Daylife

Puneet Gupta, CEO of Connectbeam, and I were having a conversation earlier today regarding entrepreneurial thought and creativity of idea.  I love these types of discussions, taking a step back and assessing where “we” are in general.  They are always compelling and if nothing else, forces you to take a step back from your current position (if just for a moment) to reflect.

During our discussion, Puneet mentioned a great talk that Sir Ken Robinson gave at the TED conference a couple of years back.   I had not seen it so decided to take a look.  So as TED 2009 takes place here in California, I am watching videos of TED keynotes from prior years.

Sir Ken Robinson discusses the concept on how we need to re-assess how we approach education and educating our children.  That education normally goes towards the math and science disciplines rather than the arts.  His view is that we must think very hard about the arts and how developing these skills as well is fundental to creativity and thinking outside of the box.  Two things I find compelling about this line of thought:

1)  You hear more often than not that we need to invest more not less in the math and science educational system in order to continue to progress innovation forward.  Completely the opposite of the lens that Robinson takes.

2)  On merit, what Robinson says is true.  The education system simply by its nature is geared to teach students what is already learned and known by others who have determined it.  Makes sense.  It is not that math and sciences are bad but that it conforms everyone’s thinking to what has already been thought of.

So, where does that leave us?  How do we develop new ideas?  Very interesting discussion points particularly when you talk about entreprenuerial attitude, trying new things, creating new businesses and ways of looking at the world.  Robinson makes a statement in his talk that really rang true for me:

If you are not prepared to be wrong, you will never come up with anything original.

How true this statement is.

I don’t know quite yet where my thoughts land on where the right balance between the sciences and arts should be.  It is a complex topic.  Education is important.  Learning from the past is important.  Math and Science are important.  I’ve always slanted and been more interested in the sciences side of things.  But I appreciate Robinson’s perspective, there is certainly something to be said for the development of creative thought rather than learning disciplined sciences, thinking creatively rather than analytically.  Obviously both are needed, that leads to true innovation.

If you haven’t seen his talk, it is about 20 minutes and well worth it.

Reblog this post [with Zemanta]

Trust in the Cloud

I planned on naming this post In Cloud We Trust but then realized that Sarah Perez over at ReadWriteWeb beat me to it with a post with the same title.  It is a good post that discussed a lot of the views surrounding trust and cloud-based services.  This post is a continuation from my last one discussing cloud services.

I began thinking about the number of ways in which I think about the levels of trust we place in the cloud.  Here is the short list there are probably more:

  • Trust the Value – Obviously you need to make the conscious decision to start using a service.  Early adopters typically begin the movement.  And there needs to be value in having it in the cloud.  This is clearly why many of the cloud based services we try out are ones in the productivity arena where taking the data with you is less convenient or you need multiple access points (i.e. multiple computers).
  • Trust your Patience and Fortitude – There are so many services being offered today, the Web 2.0 phenomena.  So any early adopter needs to trust their patience as these new services develop and evolve.   You also need to trust your fortitude and comfort in collecting user-ids and passwords like they are going out of style.  Perhaps there is a cloud-based start-up just to keep track of all of the cloud-based services you try out? :)  I know I’ve lost track, reminder emails are very often my best method of remembering I signed up for something.
  • Trust the Service’s Longevity – Wouldn’t it be great to know that the service you signed up for will be there for you in 12-24 months.  This goes to security of your information.  This goes to your time and effort in learning a new services capability, its nuances and how to integrate it into your work-flow, particularly for your productivity tools. (See jumping from Google Notebook to Evernote).  This also extends to simply the longevity of your own account at these services.  I discussed this in my last post and Matt Mullenweg blogged about this yesterday regarding Google account take over.
  • Trust in Privacy – To use many of these services, particularly those that have social integration, you need to have a pretty good comfort level with your information being out there.  Many services, such as Vimeo and Plaxo, allow you to govern who can see what about you and your content but many are open in their nature.  And if you are placing your data someone besides the confines of your own home, you need to have a good sense on how much you trust the vendor to keep your data private.  Everyone has to make their own decision but my sense is this type of trust has to happen, it is simply the way the technology world is evolving. Not to mention, but my view is you have the same privacy concerns even with desktop software that uses the internet to “talk back” to the mother ship.  The cat has been out of this bag for years, it is just becoming even more pervasive.
  • Trust in Data Security – I believe, over the long term, this is the most important one.  Everything else will shake out over time but once you have the services you’ve selected, learned how to use them effectively and gotten over privacy concerns, will your data be there all the time and when you most need it.  If you lost all of your mail, your contacts, your calendar, your photos, bookmarks, what kind of impact would it have on you.  If you are like me, I would imagine a big one.

There are probably many other elements of trust that I haven’t touched on.  In fact, another one, trust in others, with the power of social media comes to the social contract with your connections that you trust them with the information that you are sharing with them.  This may be its own post that I will follow-up on at a later date.

Reblog this post [with Zemanta]