Thursday, July 11, 2013

Where Good Ideas Come From... My Takeaways from Steven Johnson's Talk

Recently I was part of a presentation team at the International Society for Technology in Education (ISTE) Conference. This blog post is part of a series of reflections from the conference.

It's been a couple of weeks since returning home from ISTE in San Antonio, and I'm still reflecting on all that I heard and saw. I love learning during the summer because I have the time to reflect and ponder and process, something that gets put on the back burner during the busy-ness of the school year. 

I was interested to hear the keynote address by Steven Johnson.  He's a thought leader in the world of technology. I'm an idea collector. And an idea generator. I wanted to hear from him where good ideas come from.

Here are my takeways...

An idea comes out of other ideas that are re-positioned and re-configured. It's the connectedness of ideas that lead to the most disruptive, innovate ideas. 
     How am I connecting my ideas together?

There must be a medium to connect the ideas. In the past, there were liquid networks where people would meet to discuss ideas over coffee. Commonplace books were used as a way to record ideas, facts, quotes, etc. all in one place.
     Am I utilizing my liquid network (social media) to make valuable                           connections to others' ideas?
     How can I organize and keep my ideas all in one place?

Breakthrough ideas start out as a hunch. They can stay in this state for months or even years. They have to connect to other ideas, other people's hunches, before the breakthrough happens. 
     Am I being patient, looking for ways to connect my ideas to others?

It's important to diversify, not just specialize. Find way to connect with people who have different ideas. Connections must be made across disciplines. 
     With whom am I connecting, in order to hear their ideas?

"Chance favors the connected mind." -Steven Johnson

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