Monday, January 14, 2013

Big Idea Monday- Bark If You Like It

“Chance favors the connected mind.”
-Steven Johnson

Ideas don’t really look like flashes of brilliant light. They look like this picture, more of a network of thoughts and experiences connected together, according to Steven Johnson. Johnson is the author of eight science and technology books that are read by CEO’s from Wall Street to Silicon Valley. He gives this Ted Talk about one of his latest books, Where Good Ideas Come From. In the Ted Talk, he makes the case that Eureka moments usually come about gradually after years of panning for gold. They come about more frequently in group settings where ideas are being shared. Creations are made of existing parts or experiences that are already available to the creator. Often they are a re-adaptation of an invention for new purposes. He uses the example of transit satelite and how it led to several other applications for satellite use including GPS. 

For this Big Idea Monday: Books for Dogs. My good idea comes from the dog park. My daughter and I have developed the habit of taking a book to the park to read while her furry sister plays. Often she encourages me to make up my own story. We have a few adult followers who listen in. It has been in this group environment that I have come up with two ideas for children’s books. Each will be dedicated to my son and daughter. But than I started thinking, I should write one for my dog. After all, she is a part of the family, my third child. Than I started thinking about all the plush doggie boutiques that sell baby strollers and gourmet cookies and monogrammed sweaters. Why are they not selling books for dogs? There is already a slowly growing literacy movement to get kids to practice reading to their dogs. There is even a website dedicated to making therapy dogs a part of your local library called Library Dogs. My idea is a readaptation of that concept. I think instead of just reading any old book to your dog, you should also be able to buy a book for your dog that is about dogs, written for them. I was at Barnes and Noble the other day and they had a Fifty Shades of Chicken book at the register. Come on, seriously? Spinning off the popularity of the Fifty Shades of Grey erotica romance, this racy cookbook had recipes like: bound and gagged bird, spanked chicken, etc. If that book found a publisher and prominent shelf space, than I think my idea has a bark of a chance.

Where do your brilliant ideas come from?

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