Wednesday, August 1, 2007
By Jeffrey Baumgartner
- Listen to music by Johann Sebastian Bach. If Bach doesn't make you more creative, you should probably see your doctor - or your brain surgeon if you are also troubled by headaches, hallucinations or strange urges in the middle of the night.
- Brainstorm. If properly carried out, brainstorming can help you not only come up with sacks full of new ideas, but can help you decide which is best
- Always carry a small notebook and a pen or pencil around with you. That way, if you are struck by an idea, you can quickly note it down. Upon rereading your notes, you may discover about 90% of your ideas are daft. Don't worry, that's normal. What's important are the 10% that are brilliant.
- If you're stuck for an idea, open a dictionary, randomly select a word and then try to formulate ideas incorporating this word. You'd be surprised how well this works. The concept is based on a simple but little known truth: freedom inhibits creativity. There are nothing like restrictions to get you thinking.
- Define your problem. Grab a sheet of paper, electronic notebook, computer or whatever you use to make notes, and define your problem in detail. You'll probably find ideas positively spewing out once you've done this.
- If you can't think, go for a walk. A change of atmosphere is good for you and gentle exercise helps shake up the brain cells.
- Don't watch TV. Experiments performed by the JPB Creative Laboratory show that watching TV causes your brain to slowly trickle out your ears and/or nose. It's not pretty, but it happens.
- Don't do drugs. People on drugs think they are creative. To everyone else, they seem like people on drugs.
- Read as much as you can about everything possible. Books exercise your brain, provide inspiration and fill you with information that allows you to make creative connections easily.
- Exercise your brain. Brains, like bodies, need exercise to keep fit. If you don't exercise your brain, it will get flabby and useless. Exercise your brain by reading a lot (see above), talking to clever people and disagreeing with people - arguing can be a terrific way to give your brain cells a workout. But note, arguing about politics or film directors is good for you; bickering over who should clean the dishes is not.
Tuesday, July 17, 2007
Want more creative ideas? Perhaps you want to exercise more creativity in solving problems in your work, or at home. Maybe you just like the thought of being the one with the most interesting ideas the next time you are with a group of friends. Either way, you can quickly generate creative ideas by using a few simple techniques, starting with the following.
1. Change the size of things.
Ask how things could be bigger or smaller and what the advantages would be. How could a refrigerator be smaller, and how would that be useful? Maybe a small, high-power, countertop drink cooler? Put a can of soda in it for a minute, and it's icy cold.
2. Consider opposites.
Suppose that instead of being bad for your teeth, candy was actually good for them? Could a candy be developed that prevented tooth decay and perhaps even strengthened teeth? Suppose exercise wasn't necessary to strengthen muscles? Could the muscle-building process that takes place from exercise be somehow duplicated without the exercise?
3. Look at extremes.
All action scenes would be too much action in a movie, right? This extreme suggests the problem of how to have the right amount - of action and other elements. Maybe a study of past movies, measuring their financial success in relation to various elements, could be used to determine an "ideal" movie formula.
4. Mentally move things.
I was looking at the exhaust fan in the bathroom and imagining it over the shower. This immediately suggested that there might be less steaming up of the mirror if the fan was closer to the source of the steam. A pillow on top of the CD player suggests the idea of subliminal self-help pillows that turn on the messages whenever there is pressure on the pillow.
5. Challenge the "known."
Most people assume poverty causes higher crime rates, but there are places where there is more poverty and less crime. What are some possible explanations, and how could these hypothesis be tested? Do houses really need windows? What about video screens with prettier views, broadcast from cameras that the user subscribes to?
6. Put things together randomly.
A radio-controlled plane and a small surveillance camera, put together in my mind, suggests a new way to look at climbing routes on mountains.
7. Develop silly ideas.
I was wondering what would happen if two strong gusts of wind going in opposite directions met. Would they cancel each other out, or what? A silly thought, but it triggered the idea of a car with high-powered fans that send a sheet of air from the front end out to the roof above the windshield. Would the oncoming air follow this "virtual surface," making the car more aerodynamic?
8. Look for other ways something can be used.
I made a good lightweight backpacking hat from a sleeve of an old thermal shirt. You can pan for gold with a frisbee. The idea of getting stronger muscles from exercise could be applied to getting stronger financial abilities by exercising them. How many other uses can you think of for a chair?
9. Randomly alter things.
What if you were to change the steering wheel on a racing boat? How else could you steer? Could two foot pedals that steered the boat be a more intuitively comfortable way to steer? Just apply more pressure to the foot on the side you want to turn towards. This leaves your hands free for other controls.
10. Apply ideas to new areas.
The science of behavior economics, found that adding a more expensive stove to the selection in a store increased the sales of the stove that was previously the most expensive. How can this principle, called "extremeness aversion," be applied to other areas? For example, if you were trying to get volunteers for a trail-restoration project, would adding a six-day-per month option get more people to volunteer for the one-weekend-per month program?
Some techniques will yield nothing when applied to a particular area, while others will be perfect for that situation or problem. For this reason, it helps to have many idea-generating tools in your arsenal. You can start with the techniques for new and creative ideas listed here.
Sunday, June 10, 2007
Sincerely believe in,
Vividly imagine, and
Enthusiastically act upon,
Must inevitably come to pass.
- Sybil Leek, Diary of a Witch
What is Creative Visualization?
Creative visualization is the technique of using your imagination to create what you want in your life. In the past many of us have used our power of creative visualization in a relatively unconscious way. Because of our own deep-seated negative concepts about life, we have automatically and unconsciously expected and imagined lack, limitation, difficulties, and problems to be our lot in life.
It should be noted that this technique cannot be used to "control" the behavior of others or cause them to do something against their will. Whatever you try to create for another will always boomerang back to you. That includes both loving, helpful, or healing actions and negative, destructive ones.
To use creative visualization it is not necessary to believe in any metaphysical or spiritual ideas. It is not necessary to "have faith" in any power but yourself. Creative visualization is magic in the truest and highest meaning of the word.
Magic: Understanding and aligning yourself with the natural principles that govern the workings of our universe, and learning to use these principles in the most conscious and creative way.
How Creative Visualization Works
In order to understand how Creative Visualization works, it's useful to look at several interrelated principles:
- The physical universe is energy
- Energy is magnetic (like attracts like)
- Form (physical energy) follows idea (mental energy)
- Whatever you put out to the universe will be reflected back to you
- Set your goal
- Create a clear idea or picture
- Focus on it often
- Give it positive energy
Continue to work with this process until you achieve your goal, or no longer have the desire to do so. Remember that goals often change before they are realized. If you lose interest it may mean that it's time for a new look at what you want.
Affirmations are one of the most important elements of creative visualization. An affirmation is a strong, positive statement that something is already so. It is a way of "making firm" that which you are imaging.
The practice of doing affirmations allows us to begin replacing some of our stale, worn out, or negative mind chatter with more positive ideas and concepts. It is a powerful technique, one that can in a short time completely transform our attitudes and expectations about life, and thereby totally change what we create for ourselves.
An affirmation can be any positive statement:
Everything I need is already within me.
The universe is unfolding perfectly.
All things are now working together for good in my life.
I love and appreciate myself.
Here are some important things to remember:
Always phrase affirmations in the present tense.
Always phrase affirmations in the most positive way you can.
In general, the shorter and simpler the better.
Always use affirmations that feel totally right for you.
Always remember that you are creating something new, not trying to redo or change what already exists, which would create conflict.
Affirmations are not meant to contradict or try to change your feelings or emotions, even the so-called "negative" ones.
Temporarily suspend your doubts and hesitations, and put your full mental and emotional energy into your affirmations.
When you are coming out of the empty, grasping, manipulative condition, the first and foremost lesson to be learned is to just let go. You must relax, stop struggling, stop trying so hard, stop manipulating things and people to try to get what you want and need. In fact, just stop doing so much and have an experience of just being for awhile.
When you do this, you suddenly discover that you're really perfectly okay, just letting yourself be, and letting the world be. You begin to want to focus your energy toward the highest and most fulfilling goals that are real for you at any given moment.
Being, Doing, and Having
Often people try to live their lives backwards: They try to have more things in order to do more of what they want, so that they will be happier.
The way it actually works is the reverse. You must first be who you really are, then do what you need to do in order to have what you want.
Three Necessary Elements
Desire - a clear, strong sense of purpose
Belief - that it can exist, and that it can exist for you
Acceptance - are you willing to have it completely (pro and con)?
Going With the Flow
The only effective way to use creative visualization is "going with the flow." That means that you don't have to "effort" to get where you want to go; you simply put it out clearly to the universe where you would like to go, and then patiently and harmoniously follow the flow of the river of life until it takes you there.
Going with the flow means holding onto your goals lightly (even though they may seem very important) and being willing to change them if something better comes along. Going with the flow is the balance between keeping your destination clearly in mind, and yet also enjoying all the beautiful scenes along the way, and even being willing to change your destination if life starts carrying you in a better direction. The only successful manifestation is one which brings about a change or growth in consciousness; that is, it has manifested God/dess, or revealed it more fully, as well as having manifested a form...
Accepting Your Good
In order to use creative visualization to create what you want in life, you must be willing and able to accept the best that life has to offer you - your "good." Many of us have difficulty accepting the possibility of having what we want in life. This usually stems from some basic feelings of unworthiness which we took on at a very early age. Affirmations and creative visualization are a wonderful way of creating a more positive and loving self-image. First, it lets you accept and love yourself as you are. Second, it lets you start creating yourself as you want to be.
A very important part of the whole creative visualization process is prosperity programming. This means having the understanding, or consciously taking the point of view, that the universe is totally abundant...it is a cornucopia of everything that your heart could ever desire, both on the material plane and on emotional, mental, and spiritual planes as well. One of the most common causes of failing to get what you want is "scarcity programming." The truth about this earth is that it is an infinitely good, beautiful, nourishing place to be. The only "evil" comes from lack of understanding of this truth. Evil (ignorance) is like a shadow - it has no real substance of its own, it is simple a lack of light. You cannot cause a shadow to disappear by trying to fight it - you must shine a light on it. Unless you can create a context that the world is a good place to be that can potentially work for everyone, you will experience difficulty in creating what you want in your personal life.
Another key principle is that of giving, or "outflowing." Once we begin to accept the goodness of the universe, we naturally want to share it as well, realizing that as we give out of our energy, we make space for more to flow into us. When through insecurity we try to hold onto what we have, we begin to cut off this wonderful flow of energy.
Energy takes many forms, such as love, affection, appreciation and recognition, material possessions, money, friendship, etc., and the principles apply equally to all these forms.
A Simple Exercise in Creative Visualization
First, think of something you would like. It might be an object you would like to have, an event you would like to happen, a situation in which you'd like to find yourself, or some circumstance in your life you'd like to improve.
Get in a comfortable position, either sitting or lying down, in a quiet place where you won't be disturbed. Relax your body completely. Breathe slowly and deeply. Count down slowly from 10 to 1, feeling yourself getting more deeply relaxed with each count.
When you feel deeply relaxed, start to imagine the thing you want exactly as you would like it. You may imagine what people are saying, or any details that make it more real to you. You may take a relatively short time or quite a few minutes to imagine this - whatever feels best for you. It should be a thoroughly enjoyable experience, like a child daydreaming.
Now keeping the idea or image still in your mid, mentally make some very positive, affirmative statement about it. Always end your visualization with a firm statement to yourself:
This, or something better, now manifests for me in totally satisfying and harmonious ways, for the highest good of all concerned.
This leaves room for something different and even better than you originally envisioned to happen, and serves as a reminder to you that this process only functions for the mutual benefit of all.
If doubts or contradictory thoughts arise, don't resist them or try to prevent them. This will tend to give them a power they don't otherwise have. Just let them flow through your consciousness and return to your positive statements and images.
It's Important to Relax
It's important to relax deeply when you are first learning to use creative visualization. When your body and mind are deeply relaxed, your brain wave pattern actually changes. This deeper, slower level is commonly called alpha level, which has been found to be a very healthful state of consciousness. It has also been found to be far more effective than the more active beta level in creating real changes in the so-called objective world, through the use of visualization.
It is especially good to do creative visualization at night just before sleeping, or in the morning just after awakening, because at those times the mind and body are often already deeply relaxed and receptive. In addition, a short period of relaxation and creative visualization done at mid-day will relax and renew you, and cause your day to flow more smoothly.
Discovering Our Higher Purpose
A basic need of all human beings is to make a positive contribution to the world and to our fellow beings, as well as to improve and enjoy our personal lives. We all have a great deal to offer the world and to each other, each in our own special and unique way. To a great degree, our own personal sense of well being is a function of how much we are expressing this.
We each have a significant contribution to make in this lifetime. I call this contribution our higher purpose. It always involves being yourself totally, completely, and naturally, and doing something or many things that you genuinely love to do, and that come easily to you. We all know in our hearts what our higher purpose is, but we often do not consciously acknowledge it, even to ourselves. In fact, most people seem to go to great lengths to hide it from themselves and from the world. They fear and seek to avoid the power, responsibility, and light that comes with acknowledging and expressing their true purpose in life.
You will find in using creative visualization that your ability to manifest will work to the degree that you are in alignment with your higher purpose. If you try to manifest something and it doesn't seem to work, it may not be appropriate to the underlying pattern and meaning of your life. Be patient and keep tuning into your inner guidance. In retrospect you will see that everything is unfolding perfectly.
Saturday, June 9, 2007
1. Go for a walk. draw or list things you find on the the sidewalk.
2. Write a letter to yourself in the future.
3. Buy something inexpensive as a symbol for your need to create, (new pen, a tea cup, journal). Use it everyday.
4. Draw your dinner.
5. Find a piece of poetry you respond to. Rewrite it and glue it into your journal.
6. Glue an envelope into your journal. For one week collect items you find on the street.
7. Expose yourself to a new artist, (go to a gallery, or in a book.) Write about what moves you about it.
8. Find a photo of a person you do not know. Write a brief bio about them.
9. Spend a day drawing only red things.
10. Draw your bike.
11. Make a list of everything you buy in the next week.
12. Make a map of everywhere you went in one day.
13. Draw a map of the creases on your hand, (knuckles, palm)
14. Trace your footsteps with chalk.
15. Record an overheard conversation.
16. Trace the path of the moon in relation to where you live.
17. Go to a paint store. Collect 'chips' of all your favorite colors.
18. Draw your favorite tree.
19. Take 15 minutes to eat an orange.
20. Write a haiku.
21. Hang upside down for five minutes.
22. Hang found objects from tree branches.
23. Make a puppet.
24. Create an outdoor room from things you find in nature.
25. Read a book in one day.
26. Illustrate your grocery list.
27. Read a story out loud to a friend.
28. Write a letter to someone you admire.
29. Study the face of someone you do not like.
30. Make a meal based on a color theme. (i.e. all white).
31. Create a museum of very small things.
32. List the smells in your neighborhood.
33. List 100 uses for a tin can.
34. Fill an entire page in your journal with small circles. Color them in.
35. Give away something you love.
36. Choose an object, draw the side you can't see.
37. List all of the places you've ever lived.
38. Describe your favorite room in detail.
39. Write about your relationship with your washing machine.
40. Draw all of the things in your purse/bag.
41. Make a mini book based on the theme, "my grocery list".
42. Create a character based on someone you know. Write a list of personality traits.
43. Recall your favorite childhood game.
44. Put postcards of art pieces/painting on the inside of your kitchen cupboard doors, so you can see them everyday (but not become deaf to them.)
45. Draw the same object every day for a week.
46. Write in your journal using a different medium (brush & ink, charcoal, old typewriter, crayons, fat markers.
47. Draw the individual items of your favorite outfit.
48. Make a useful item using only paper & tape.
49. Research a celebration or ritual from another culture.
50. Do a temporary art installation using a pad of post it notes & a pen.
51. Draw a map of your favorite sitting spots in your town/city. (photocopy it and give it to someone you like.)
52. Record all of the sounds you hear in the course of one hours.
53. Using a grid, collect various textures from magazine and play them off of each other.
54. Cut out all media for one day. Write about the effects.
55. Make pencil rubbings of six different surfaces.
56. Draw your garbage.
57. Do a morning collage.
58. List your ten most important things, (not including animals or people.)
59. List ten things you would like to do every day.
60. Glue a photo of yourself as a child into your journal.
61. Transform some garbage.
62. Write an entry in your journal in really LARGE letters.
63. Collect some 'flat' things in nature (leaves, flowers). Glue or tape them into your journal.
64. Physically alter a page. (i.e. cut a hole, pour tea on it, burn it, fold it, etc.)
65. Find several color combinations you respond to in public. Document them using swatches, write where you found them.
66. Write a journal entry describing something "secret". Cut it up into several pieces and glue them back in scrambled.
67. Record descriptions or definitions of subjects or words you are interested in, found in encyclopedias or dictionaries.
68. Draw the outline of an object without looking at the page. (contour drawing).
69. What were you thinking just now? write it down.
70. Do nothing.
71. Write a list of ten things you could to do. Do the last thing on the list.
72. Create an image using dots.
73. Do 3 drawings at different speeds.
74. Put a small object in your left pocket (or in a bag), Put your left hand in the pocket. Draw it by feel.
75. Create a graph documenting or measuring something in your life.
76. Draw the sun.
77. Create instructions for a simple everyday task.
78. Make prints using food. (fruit and vegetables cut in half, fish, etc.)
79. Find a photo. Alter it by drawing over it.
80. Write a letter using an unconventional medium.
81. Draw one object for twenty minutes.
82. Combine two activities that have not been combined before.
83. Write about your day in an encyclopedic fashion. (i.e. organize by subject.)
84. Write a list of all the things you do to escape.
85. Cut a random shape out of several layers of a magazine. Make a collage out of the results.
86. Write an entry in code.
87. Make a painting using tools from the bathroom.
88. Work with a medium that is subtractive.
89. Write about or draw some of the doors in your life.
90. Make a postcard that has some kind of activity on it.
91. Divide a journal entry using "layers".
92. Divide an entry using "layers".
93. Write your own definition of one of the following concepts, sitting, waiting, sleeping (without using the actual word.)
94. List 10 of your habits.
95. Illustrate the concept of "simplicity".
96. Play with doggy.
97. Sing with bird.
98. Read Doraemon.
99. Take nap.
100. Do nothing.
Friday, June 1, 2007
By Michael Kerr
1. Keep an idea journal to keep track off all your ideas, no matter how zany they may first appear!
2. Have fun! Humour and creativity are directly related and feed off each other. Humour helps reduce inhibitions, promotes lateral thinking and opens up more honest and open communication. (Ha + Ha = AHA!). Play a fun game, play Pictionary, brainstorm something wacky or do a theatre improv game before sitting down to brainstorm.
3. Become a browser of information. Studies suggest highly creative people tend to be generalists who make associations between unrelated information. Look for ideas everywhere and anywhere and from anyone!
4. Take the time to carefully frame the wording of your problem statement or goals for ideas to make sure that you are solving the right problem and not limiting your solutions.
5. Create a creativity and humour library in your office or workplace.
6. Circulate an idea file to collect ideas from ALL staff and even outside clients.
7. Hold contests for new ideas. Reward yourself and others for their creativity.
8. Establish a fun physical working environment and ambience. Our physical environment can have a huge impact on our ability to be creative.
9. Establish a “no sacred cows allowed” policy. (Challenge ALL rules, assumptions and outdated thinking!)
10. Keep a mini-tape recorder in your vehicle to capture ideas on the road.
11. Tolerate individual quirks in other people - recognize them as the opportunity for diverse perspectives. Ask total outsiders for their ideas.
12. Establish teams with a good mix of abilities (combine “idea people” with “doers”, “sellers” & “planners”).
13. Use puzzles and toys to stimulate creative thinking during meetings.
14. Hold regular brainstorm meetings to practice the process. (Remember the rules: quantity over quality, no blocking, no judging, build on other ideas – “Yes, and!”)
15. Ban idea-squashing language (“we’ve always done it this way”) from your vocabulary.
16. Hold meetings in different locations (have a picnic, go for a walk, go to someone’s house, a museum, the zoo. . .) to change your perspective.
17. View your problem from the opposite or reverse perspective.
18. Force random connections. Choose a word from the dictionary and look for novel connections between the word and your problem.
19. Make an idea list: force yourself to list 20 different ideas related to the issue.
20. Mindmap possible ideas. Put a key word or phrase in the middle of the page and then let ideas branch off in different directions, writing them all on the same page, branching ideas off each other in related categories.
21. Always ask yourself what the “other” right answer is. Force yourself to keep hunting for more ideas.
22. Exaggerate a trait connected to the problem and see what ideas follow.
23. Look at your problem or goal from a different perspective by imagining it from the perspective of another profession, a famous person or even an animal.
24. Re-word your problem statement and see what new ideas emerge by simply posing a different question.
25. Ask a five year-old for ideas for a totally novel perspective!
26. Choose your “peak brain hours” to brainstorm. (Don’t brainstorm at if your brain always feels like sludge at that hour!)
27. Minimize the risks associated with implementing a new idea by minimizing any possible downsides, communicating the risks and developing a plan for the “worse case scenario.”
28. Learn to SELL new ideas. Become an idea cheerleader and champion their cause.
29. Create an action plan with deadlines to implement new ideas.
30. Give yourself permission to play and be to be creative!
Wednesday, May 9, 2007
Friday, May 4, 2007
- Change the Way You See Everything: Through Asset-Based Thinking by Kathryn D. Cramer
- How to Get Ideas (BK Life) by Jack Foster
- Design Your Self: Rethinking the Way You Live, Love, Work, and Play by Karim Rashid
- It's Not How Good You Are, Its How Good You Want to Be: The World's Best Selling Book, by Paul Arden
- Zing!: Five Steps and 101 Tips for Creativity On Command, by Sam Harrison
- Ideaspotting: How to Find Your Next Great Idea, by Sam Harrison
- Caffeine for the Creative Mind: 250 Exercises to Wake Up Your Brain, by Stefan Mumaw, Wendy Lee Oldfield
- Change the Way You See Everything: Through Asset-Based Thinking, by Kathryn D. Cramer, Hank Wasiak
- Juicing the Orange: How to Turn Creativity into a Powerful Business Advantage by Pat Fallon
- Fingerprint: The Art of Using Handmade Elements in Graphic Design by Chen Design Associates
- Hey, Whipple, Squeeze This: A Guide to Creating Great Ads, Second Edition by Luke Sullivan
- Ideaship: How to Get Ideas Flowing in Your Workplace by Jack Foster
Friday, April 20, 2007
Monday, April 2, 2007
Wind chimes made from bones. There are a lot of people out there who like the morbid side of life, and I'll bet they buy wind chimes too. Of course, they don't have to be human bones!
Machine that induces naps. Some of the brain wave entrainment CDs I've been using for months are really powerful. One puts me to sleep everytime, anytime of the day. This technology could be used to create a system for baby cribs and kid's beds. The machine would play CDs which slow down brain waves and puts kids to sleep. More than a few parents would buy this.
Wall-mounted furniture. Have a steel track built into the perimeter of the room, and furniture designed to hang from this. The couches, tables and chairs wouldn't need legs, and would be easy to clean under. Of course, if you produce the system, the customer has to buy furniture from you.
Furniture that glows in the dark. Perhaps it would be more practical to have just the edges trimmed with a glow-in-the-dark material. No more bumping into the coffee table in the dark, and a nice party atmosphere too.
Alarm clock that uses voices. Here's one of those easy inventions, and it isn't even that weird. Use one of the "sampler" chips that are found in electronic keyboards. Push the button to record a short message-alarm. Wake up to your own voice, or record a wake-up message from a sexy friend for more motivation. Have it say what you want. "You're late for work!" might work, or might just give you a heart attack.
Exam survival kit. Are you ready for that big exam? Now you are, with your new Examomatic Survival Kit. The kit contains caffeine pills, ginkgo biloba capsules, aromatic oils that "wake up" the brain, and a dozen quick tips for instantly raising your IQ.
Fish kite. look, in the sky! It's a bird, it's a plane... no, it's the new flying fish kite! It's an inflatable kite (no kite sticks), but it flys just like any kite. Comes with a fishing pole for the kitestring, so you can just reel it in when you're done. Fishing in the sky!
A few ideas, and now it's time to come up with your own weird inventions.
By Steven Gillman
Monday, March 19, 2007
Sunday, March 18, 2007
By Charles Bytheway
FAST Creativity & Innovation is a landmark work authored by the creator of the method called Function Analysis Systems Technique (FAST) and pioneer of value engineering and value analysis. FAST is a powerful mapping technique that can graphically model goals, objectives, strategies, plans, systems, projects, products, processes, and procedures in function terms to identify function dependencies by organizing them into a cause and effect relationship. This technique quickly brings clarity to whatever situation or problem it is applied and greatly enhances productive thinking, creativity, innovation, and complex problem solving.
Some of the basic concepts of FAST have been used for several decades in value engineering, which focuses on decreasing costs, improving quality and increasing value and profits. Derivatives of this original method such as fishbone diagrams, theory of constraints and process mapping came into use in fields such as quality management, new product development, manufacturing, and supply chain and project management. However, despite these developments, many of the original FAST concepts were either overlooked or misunderstood as greater opportunities for success remained untapped. FAST Creativity & Innovation groups all the original concepts together in great detail so you can learn them using easily understood step-by-step examples developed by the creator of this method.
The creator and author, Charles Bytheway, presents a procedure that standardizes the method for creating FAST diagrams and function trees for rapidly improving processes, innovation, new product development and value engineering, and for effectively solving a wide variety of complex problems quickly. After reading this book you will have gained not only the basic skills of using this method, but the original insight of its developer for mastering its use in any environment. This guide is an outstanding tool for use in industry, a variety of college courses and for value engineers.
Covers all the original concepts of the FAST method in step-by-step detail with examples from diverse disciplines and industries, as well as some concepts not previously shared by Charles Bytheway, the founder of this technique
Shows how innovation can be fostered and developed using the author’s FAST and function tree method to increase value and competitive advantage
Illustrates how the FAST diagram clarifies a problem and pinpoints the areas to apply creativity
Provides an expanded function tree, which makes it possible for several people, regardless of geographical locations, to develop the required functions for analysis and quickly generate creative solutions to complex problems
Includes thought provoking questions to enhance logic thinking and intuitive role-playing to aid in the construction of function logic
Table of Contents:
Chapter 1: Introduction
Utilizing one’s Imagination
Questions to Ask
Fast & Testimonials
A Communication Tool
Chapter 2: Sparked by Function
Looking at Functions
Functions Changed My Life
Something Must Be Acted Upon
Functions Not Limited to Products
Decisions - A Form of Creativity
Chapter 3: Discovering Functions
Discovering Basic Functions
Discovering How I Was Thinking
Answers Expressed as Functions
Concept of FAST Diagramming
Chapter 4: Why-How Logic
Convert Answers to Functions
Start With a Simple Function
Verifying Your Answer
Using Your Creativity
Using Why Logic
Testimonials of Function Links
Logic Diagrams and FAST Trees
Looking for Creative Opportunities
Applying Why-How Logic to New Functions
Sure Test for How Functions
Searching for Creative Opportunities
FAST Expands Our Thinking Quickly
Chapter 5: Selecting Projects
Methods for Selecting Projects
Using Method 1
Using Method 2
Using Method 3
Using Method 4
Using Method 5
Chapter 6: Participants
Ask Other People to Participate
Four Different Logic Diagrams
Individual Logic Diagrams
Creating Step by Step Diagrams
Composite Merged Diagrams
Right of Ownership
Normal Logic Diagrams
Selecting Team Members
Chapter 7: Intuitive Logic
Intuitive Role Playing
Charles Kettering’s Rule
Switching Roles Intuitively
The Chimney Story
Getting Others to Participate
Participants Should Be Trained
Every Person Should Participate
Opening the Lines of Communication
Chapter 8: FAST Procedure -- Light Bulb - Project 1
Only One Participant
Conduct Current and Mount Lamp
Provide Luminous Energy
Make Life More Enjoyable
Develop How to Make Life More Enjoyable
Produce Electricity and Increase Productivity
Insulate Conductors and Position Filament
Prevent Filament Oxidation
Use Search Lights and Reflect Light Beams
Chapter 9: Timing Device - Project 2
Using Method 1
Two Team Members
Develop How to Detonate Primer
Cock Firing Pin
Develop How to Cock Firing Pin
Release Cocking Shaft
Modify Timing Lever
Timing Lever Releases Start-Stop Plunger
Eliminate Arming Pin
Spring Steel Timing Lever
Must Be Practical
Chapter 10: Love - Project 3
Using Method 2
Only One Participant
Using the Computer’s Thesaurus and Dictionary
Foster Better Relationships
Using the Basic Function Determination Technique
Develop How to Foster Better Relationships
Treat People Respectfully
Be Friendly and Speak Softly
Develop How to Be Friendly
Be Prompt and Protect Child
The Inventive Genius Within You
Chapter 11: Three Ton Heat Pump - Project 4
Using Method 3
Five Team Members
Sell Heat Pump Unit
Develop How to Facilitate Installation
Improve Existing Heat Pump Unit
Logic Diagram - A Springboard to Creativity
Chapter 12: Military Communication Device - Project 5
Using Method 5
A Product Design Team and a Product User Team
Control Acquisition Costs
Increase Field Performance
Utilize Higher Level Logic Questions
Develop How to Support Mission
Deploy Reliable Communication Equipment
Control Sustainment Costs
Develop How to Eliminate Computer Lockups
Redesign Bezel Buttons and Observe Anomaly
Proposals Must Be Developed
Reading a FAST Tree
Chapter 13: Generalizing & Un-disclosing Methods
Golden Delicious Apples versus Fruit
Motivate People versus Prompt Action
Expanding New Functions
Eliminate Failures Verses Eradicate Defects
Brainstorming New Formulated Functions
Using the Thesaurus
FAST Can Help You Become More Creative
Chapter 14: Other Applications of FAST
Why Answers Motivate People
A Technological Advancement
A Home Security Challenge
Doors and Locks
Sliding-Glass Patio Doors
Be a Good Neighbor
Chapter 15: Constructing FAST Diagrams
Create Professional FAST Diagrams
Visit the Web
Chapter 16: Summary of FAST Procedure
Step 1 - Selecting a Project
Step 2 - Selecting Participants
Step 3 - Initial Functions
Step 4 - Initial Basic Function
Step 5 - Develop Higher Level Functions
Step 6 - Identifying the Basic Function
Step 7 - Develop Primary Path Functions
Step 8 - Evaluate Remaining Formulated Functions
Step 9 - Using When/if Logic to Add Supporting Functions
Step 10 - Develop Secondary Path Functions
Step 11 - Brainstorming Higher Level Functions
Step 12 - Generalizing Functions
Step 13 - Functions That Don’t Disclose the Method
Procedure FAST Tree
Chapter 17: Directories of Terms and Thought-Provoking Questions