Saturday, May 29, 2010

Experience categorically different things.

Creativity does not come from nothing. People sometimes have this hazy and rosy misconception that you can create marvelous things out of the void, but that does not happen in reality.

Creation is a result of successful and often unexpected link between items stored in the brain. Nothing comes from nothing.
Nothing ever could (yes, it is Julie Andrews in The Sound of Music). So it pays to store miscellaneous and on the surface irrelevant things in the cortical circuit of your brain.

As the number of items stored in your brain increases, the number of possible combinations increases in an explosive manner (just consider nC2=n(n-1)/2). So experiencing miscellaneous things is a rational approach to creativity.

Here, it is important to seek diversity in categories. Categorically same items, no matter how many are stored, would lead only to likewise properties when combined. If you store categorically different items, and successfully combine them, it would sometimes lead to real innovations0, although it is fair to say that the establishment of the combination itself is more often than not difficult.

The more difficult the establishment of the link, the more valuable when you succeed, although there is a fair chance that you end up as a hopeful monster.


kirai said...

I think this is one of the problems of the lack of innovation lately in Japan, and maybe also the rest of the modern world. Most of the people are too specialized, they are embedded and obsessed in just one thing in their lives (their job) and they fail to be creative.

Making friends from different fields, traveling a lot and reading very very different books (not only one theme) are some of my techniques to try to be creative in this world of specialization.

(ma)gog said...

So somewhere in my youth or childhood

I must have done something good.

Yuzu said...

What can I do for someone's profit efficiently. What can I do someone's joyful. I am still at the first step.
I fill anxiety in the bottom of my heart.

harmony7 said...

Thank you so much for this. I know that I am not wasting time with all the seemingly-random books I like to read.