Where good ideas come from

“The great driver for technological innovation has been the historic increase in connectivity.” Please check out and comment on this video.

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38 thoughts on “Where good ideas come from

  1. What a wonderfully made video to get the truth about this new and ever evolving world we live in! I quite agree with what he says, that even though we have more opportunities to distract us from our work (especially when we are bored), we are also able to communicate our ideas across so quickly, and sometimes when you’re thinking about something at the back of your mind, and you read about something fleetingly on Facebook, or an on-line magazine or blog, it triggers a new thought and gets you working on something else! Most of the world’s future inventions will come about thanks to the www!

  2. In order for two “hunches” to come together and turn into something bigger than the sum of the parts, the creation of a space were ideas can mingle, swap and create new forms is a must. Today organisations have realized that they need to be innovative in order to survive, and so they invest a lot in human resources, especially in the synergy that can be created when people work together. Therefore I really believe that learning to work with other people is an important skill that teachers should transmit to their students.

    • I agree with you. I was recently doing (one of the many!) assignment, which involved a part about collaborative learning, and came across this: Vygotsky (1978) claims that students are capable of performing better when asked to work in collaborative situations than when asked to work on their own.
      To be honest, before this PGCE I was quiet reluctant to accept this idea. I always chose t work on my own, when offered a choice. However, this PGCE presented us with multiple occassions were we can work in a group… one of them being this Petdi. Since we have now worked with the same groups over and over again, I feel we are now working as one piece. We automatically take our roles, work more efficiently and save a lot of time. Moreover, I think that today’s technology is simplifying collaboration. Group work is easily done online, since we can also share files online, discuss through chats/ Facebook, do voice conversations, etc….

      For more info:
      Vygotsky, L. (1978). Interaction between learning and development. In M. Gauvain & M. Cole (Eds.), Readings on the development of children (pp. 79-91). Cambridge, MA: Harvard University Press.

  3. While watching this video, I further realised how important it is to share your ideas, and how true it is that sometimes, a person has half an idea, but when ideas collide, they for something bigger, something innovative. Therefore I fully agree that it is the increase in connectivity in recent times that has allowed the huge progresses in technology innovation. Even on a smaller scale, I remember how as students, during our first teaching practice, we shared ideas and helped each other even with lesson plans this way, by sharing our ideas and resources. I believe that this connectedeness can be used by the teacher to help students to connect to other students, even those from different cultures and backgrounds, and thus helping the students accept differences of others and, as the NMC states, help students to ‘respec and celebrate differences’.

  4. I belieive that what keeps a human being’s motivation high in life, is a quest for the ‘missing piece’. This can often be found when there is the spirit of non-competitiveness and true collaboration between partners/ in a group. This team effort is unfortunately not something common as often it is over-rided by sentiments of jealousy and excessive ambition. A competent and self-confident person is incapable of jealousy in whatever he/she achieves.

  5. Connecting with others is quite a remarkable and easy thing nowadays. Scientists can especially work on something from the opposite side of the planet, in the same way that teachers can connect together using a variety of tools. The most prominent being social networking sites, emails, or by some other means.
    When looking at the business or computing world, when one company comes with an innovative idea, the other companies try to imitate them in order to produce a better result. In this way, they are borrowing ideas from others, by seeing what other people have come up with.

  6. I love his ending sentence. “Chance favors the connected mind”. This is a good argument against bills like SOPA and PIPA.

    Also, the internet is similar to published books and the written word. It gives those that say, do not have a library, a chance to learn more. The book replaced oral traditions, but it did not erase speaking. We still have conferences and classes where we learn from a teacher. So I think the internet will not destroy books, but simply give us one more outlet to share and learn.

  7. Very true. I think this is the way a piece of art is created. Being a musician/composer I mostly start from one basic, simple idea which could have struck me while I was taking a shower or cooking. After writing it down/recording it, I start to think about it, developing it and thus generating other ideas. Then, over time it starts growing by giving birth to other ideas which could be coming from a variety of resources. However, while growing it (‘idea/s’) needs guidance. Sometimes, you have to reject ideas or manipulate them to fit the rest of your ideas or your principal idea.

    Unfortunately, this is something we tend to forget.

    Thanks to the infinite resources we have out there, we are able to access a lot of information. However, there is a lot of rubbish too! Therefore, what I see is that we need to be increasingly better evaluators; able to dissect information by allowing enough time for discernment in a world which is constantly bombarding and distracting us with information.

    • Yes I think you stumbled across the tip of the iceberg here. We do not need to teach or be taught about tools. We need digital literacies… we need people who are literate in the way they handle all this information that is our here on the Web. We need people who are able to contribute to this information in an intelligent way… and by intelligent I do not mean Rocket Scientists, or University graduates…. I mean people who can filter the information, people who are aware of the consequences of publishing information, people who get their sources right – whether it is for leisure, for academia or even for society… this is, in my opinion the foundation level of all that defines digital literacy.

  8. Part of this clip ask if innovations are making us feel overwhelmed. Maybe the ever increasing new technological innovations may make us feel so. The rate with which technology is increasing is very rapid. Once you get familiar with something, there is always another gadget/software or some other new invention which includes new features which tend to make everything easier and simpler. However, I think that there is still much to do in order to increase usage of computer and new innovations with people who are non literate pc users or for those who are not familiar with such means.

  9. What a great and inspiring video! The same thing sometimes happens to me when thinking about what kind of activities I can do to motivate the students to learn. My subject is Italian, and like any other language teacher, the best way to teach grammar to our students is to motivate them and give them something that is interesting. Something that has to make them enjoy the grammar lesson, and this most of the time has to be an activity. Like it is shown in the video, idea’s don’t always come up when having a bath or something of the sort, but when things do come up, they won’t always be what you need. So it is ok to scrap ideas and/or try to make them fit to what you need them to be.

  10. I really like the video. To say the truth, it has left me breathless with one thought followed by another and another. Nowadays, the moment I learn something new in terms of technology/software etc, it is already the past, history due to the many other new applications available. The need to keep constantly being updated is a must or you start do sinking slowly and losing students. Students need a classroom where technological resources are being used in their best way. It is this that will help students be motivated and participate in the lesson to a greater degree.

  11. Meta żewġ persuni jew iktar jaqgħdu l-idejat tagħhom flimkien, ir-risultat ħa jkun isbaħ u aqwa u dan qegħdin nesperjenzawħ issa aħna l-istudetni tal-PGCE. Permezz tal-attivitajiet u proġetti li qegħdin jkollna nagħmlu bħala parti mil-kors, wieħed jista’ jara li f’proġett wieħed joħorġu mhux biss idejat differenti minn niess differenti imma risultant komplut li jinteressa l-ħaddieħor li għaddej mil-istess proġetti jew esperjenzi.
    Wieħed jista’ jinnota kemm qegħdin nitgħallmu minn xulxin u kemm qegħdin nieħdu idejat minn ta’ xulxin biex jgħinuna fl-esperjenzi tagħna fil-klassi. Meta naħdmu flimkien u naqsmu dak li nkunu għaddejna minnu ma’ haddieħor li jaf jkun għaddej mil-istess sitwazzjoniijiet, nkunu qegħdin nersqu biex nkunu għalliema ‘żjed professjonali u lesti għall kull sfida!

  12. I agree. When sharing ideas the result would be much better and also more creative. In our PGCE course that’s what we are experiencing constantly. Working in groups – collaborative learning, sharing ideas together and also valuing and respecting different opinions.
    Thus, we share our own experiences, discuss issues together and obviously we learn from one another. We are sort of experiencing what we want our students to experience – to work together towards a common goal; even though we all have different perspectives and opinions!

  13. Sometimes we think that we are self-sufficient and that we can manage to go through life without asking for the help of others. Maybe this is just because we are living in such a selfish generation. Everyone tries to get as much as they can from a situation and give nothing back. Some may say that this happens just because of the fact that, there is great competition out there, and that everyone is fighting for the same exact things. That is why they do not share their resources. But when you get to work with other people, you will notice that you will find someone to turn to when you feel lost. It’s not the first time that we thought about something but even though it seems that it might work, you feel that you should add something more to it. When working in a group and you find the ‘missing part’ other ideas will come out even better than you would have ever imagined them to be.
    No man is an island. We have to work together. One person can compensate for the other as this could lead to a myriad of new creations, and with the help of the modern day’s inventions the final project can be of great success.

  14. To add up to the last 3 comments, I think that teamwork is the key to success not just in education but also in one’s life. In certain circumstances, teamwork between teachers and students is very beneficial for both sides. Usually when mentioning “learning” it all comes down to the student, but I think that the teacher is the one who learns the most. The teacher must not stay in his/her own world but should interact with the students. This is one of the positive characteristics which teachers should have.

    I came across this video on youtube, I hope you will like it 🙂

      • Sorry for not explaining the objective (in my point of view) of this clip. It reflects the importance of teamwork. If it wasn’t for all the insects, butterflies and birds, their aim of drinking the soft drink would not have been reached. Moreover, contribution of all is fundamental. It doesn’t make a difference of our different social background, skin colour, gender, religion… (all the animals were all of different kinds).

        I hope I made myself clear, thanks.

      • Great – thanks… that is one important aspect of the online environment. You cannot expect or assume that people will understand your motivations. In fact I think this is something that we can and have to all learn from. The online environment is easily misinterpreted…even language can be misinterpreted because in this environment you cannot perceive gestures and behaviors which as human beings we are capable of processing and which instinctively to either trust or mistrust a person. This is one aspect which I think we need to make our learners aware of. So much as I am into the online environment, and much as I believe in its benefits and potentials, I will emphasise the need to exercise caution and to always act and in the case of blogs and social networks, write responsibly, whether we see the other person at the other end or not.

  15. nice and enlightening clip. what really inspired me to comment on this blog (apart that’s obligatory 🙂 ) is that sometimes we do take things for grated. we use our PC’s, mobile phones without even thinking how creative was the person who created them, and how much we really need them. Without any doubt such technologies have made our life easier. for instance if i want to by pass a message i can either send an e-mail or a simple text message. Technology not only makes our life easier but it can save us a lot of time and costs.

  16. We, as future teachers need to find very interesting ways to engage our students. As Tiziana said above about some shocking statistics – of course parents have to be the first barrier for such sites but unfortunately we live in a society where people think that since their offspring “qed jitghallem il-computer” then he/she must know it all. I think many parents do not realise that the Web is as a potential good tool as it is bad and that the bad stuff is much easier to find than the good stuff.

    So we need to remember that the children before us in class are sometimes much more digital literate than we are and that we may be trying to give them today what they got bored with yesterday. Being creative with technology is not going to be simple so we need to really dig deep inside our talent store to find that creative flair some of us don’t know we have

  17. What an amazing video! What impressed me was his explanation using incredible drawings that helped me in understanding well the concept. It made me reflect on the advantages we have today using the internet although, as already said Daniela Deguara, it is easy to distract ourselves such as using Facebook as a communication tool, we are also going away from the traditional way of getting information (using books). In my opinion internet made life better in the accessibility of getting information faster and sharing ideas.

  18. Huwa importanti ħafna li aħna l-istudenti għalliema u l-ghalliema ingenerali nkunu kreattivi u noħorġu b’bosta ideat innovattivi biex nimmotivaw lill-istudenti tagħna. Biex nagħmlu dan ma rridux inkunu maqtugħin mid-dinja ta’ madwarna, iżda rridu naħdmu id f’id ma’ ħaddieħor b’mod kollaborattiv. Filfatt Ashley Montagu (1965) jisħaq li “Without cooperation of its members society cannot survive, and the society of men has survived because the cooperativeness of its members made survival possible…” Illum il-ġurnata l-internet qiegħed jgħinna nżommu kuntatt ma’ ta’ madwarna, jgħina biex ma ninqaflux f’bozza iżda naqsmu l-ideat tagħna lkoll flimkien biex fl-aħħar naslu għal prodott kreattiv, innovattiv u oriġinali li l-istudenti mhumiex imdorrijin bih. B’hekk nistimulawhom iktar u niftħulhom l-aptit għal-lezzjonijiet li nkunu ħejjejnilhom u t-tagħlim isir b’mod sħiħ.

  19. I once read that great authors connect, interpret, and recycle ideas from other great authors. Connections are what make the world go round with regards to knowledge. Connections are indispensable. I have one concern though. Not withdrawing the invaluable advantage of easy access to all kin of data and information,we have to be really aware of not rendering our brains ‘lazy’. What do I mean?

    If we try to remember our childhood days, when we were required to do a small research project, we may recall going to a public library, searching for books, newspaper back issues, and large volumes of encyclopaedias. It not only required physical and mental effort, but also a good hold of creativity so as to find relevant information and present it interestingly.

    In our times, all that I’ve mentioned can be searched for, and carried out digitally. By all means. However the new generations are more tempted to think that useful information is just a click away, with no need of that extra effort of thinking.

    To conclude, as one wise man have said, it is not the knowledge that you know that counts, but how much reflection you put on that knowledge.

  20. This whole video is in line with most of the strategies that this PGCE course is trying to foster in us; the future teachers. This clip is clearly embedded within the constructivist teaching philosophy. Ideas are refined when they are: challenged, investigated, critiqued, compared, analysed by other ideas. The coming together of ideas is the coming together of different people. Therefore teachers should create their engines of creativity, through the creation and fostering of a collaborative framework, which will surely improve the teaching profession because ideas are shared and discussed. The virtual platform is clearly an effective and practical opportunity for these engines of creativity to flourish. Are you going to be an effective and creative teacher or………???

  21. I think the most important part of this video is where it said that good ideas develop by time. I think one can show this in class to students especially if the teacher notices that he/she has students with low self esteem in class. This video encourages students to further with their studies and not give up. I think it would motivate students in class.

  22. I have had endless discussions and debates with family and friends over Facebook and its utility… and while for most it might truly be just another way to waste time, I love it because to me it is a great way to interact with others, to share and to explore… to learn and to develop… At the beginning I must admit that I used Facebook quite superficially, as a means to update friends really, but in time I began to come across interesting groups and pages and shared links and videos that were meaningful… nowadays this is what I look out for when I log in…

    (Examples: https://www.facebook.com/ONE; https://www.facebook.com/Avaaz; https://www.facebook.com/goodinc; https://www.facebook.com/FreeYourMindandThink; https://www.facebook.com/storyofstuff; https://www.facebook.com/pages/Created-Equal/133727729978295; https://www.facebook.com/successnation)

    Creativity always seemed like something beyond reach to me, a sort of innate trait that one is either born with or not. Johnson seems to think otherwise, and suggests a very practical way in which people can exercise their creative muscle: ‘create a space where ideas could mingle and swap and create new forms’. Facebook is of course only one example of such a space… the classroom could be another….

    According to Johnson, the great driver of scientific innovation has been the historic increase in connectivity and our ability to reach out and exchange ideas with other people. As teachers, our role is therefore to create opportunities for connectivity, whether they are in school or outside school, physically or virtually. And it is about giving students the space to voice their thoughts, rather than bombard them with our own. It’s exciting to think that us teachers will hopefully be witnessing creativity in action….

  23. This video is “spot-on” to what is happening nowadays. Personally, I find the internet very useful, however it is not my only source to get new ideas and information, I still rely very much on books. Having said that I still would find myself totally lost if I didn’t have the internet and today’s technologies, which make it easier to share ideas. Also, as mentioned in the video, ideas build up with time and can get better when sharing and seeing how other people might add their taste to your idea. During our TP my friends and I shared some ideas, and it was interesting to notice that all of us got different results, which we again shared afterwards and learnt from each other how to tackle the situation. It’s amazing how reflex the mind is when you are in a situation – you’d react very different than what you might have planned.

    It is true that one can become easily distracted using these technologies, but I think this is all about personal discipline. For example I set a time frame in almost everything I do. If I find something interesting and it’s out of my time frame, I just save it and refer to it later.

  24. As teachers, and as student teachers, we all strive to be creative in the classroom. In order to be creative, we must think and pick our brains for good ideas. Steven Johnson says that great ideas come from small hunches, which collide with other small hunches to result in the most creative ideas. Great ideas ‘’need time to incubate’’, meaning that they cannot be rushed and need considerable thought over a period of time. Therefore, as teachers, we must give this thought process time in order to come up with a creative lesson for our students to enjoy.

    Furthermore, great ideas at times are formed in the space where people and their own ideas can mingle and swap. A new creativity can be formed though this process. When applying this concept to the educational setting, one may consider the staffroom as one of these spaces where one can mingle, interact and share ideas. Educators must be open to sharing material, thoughts, and ideas so as to feed off each other’s minds of creativity. After all, this would be widely beneficial to our students.

  25. I love this video, not only for the animations which I think are amazing but for the message behind it all!! So creative!

    Sometimes, as a teacher you would want to come up with these new ideas, be creative, do things that you know the students will appreciate and enjoy! However, it is also true that there tends to be a difficulty when it comes to actually finding the things to do, to actually come up with these ‘Big Ideas’.

    Nowadays, some amazing ideas are only a click away… trough google searching an idea you have and see how this can evolve into something intresting. This is were the ‘half idea’ mentioned in the video comes in. One may know what he wants to do but does not know how to do it… with the help of a friend, collegue, or even through the internet these ideas can actually be created and used!

    Steve Jobs hit the nail on the head when he said, “The only way to do great work is to love what you do. If you haven’t found it yet, keep looking. Don’t settle.”

    Big ideas come from wanting to know more… wanting to be better at what you do and making every effort to achieve that. If we as teachers, love what we do, we will try our very best to come up with these ‘Big Ideas’ to make the academic life of our students an enjoyable one!

    ‘Creativity is just connecting things’ – http://visual.ly/where-do-ideas-come

  26. I think that in this clip the first thing that came to mind is group work. It’s important to mention that I am a PGCE PSD student and therefore everything I see/learn about that is connected to learning is seen from a biased point of view, that is: how would it affect the PSD class, and not your average academic class. I think that this clip is the very basic reason for which we employ group work in class, and the reason that the group work is always different from topic to topic and the reason why we encourage children to work with those they feel comfortable with, the advantage being that if they feel comfortable with each other they will be uninhibited from voicing their ideas and can get a great amount of work done together, and also why we encourage them to work with new people, the advantage being to explore new possibilities, ideas and relationships. Knowing this will definitely motivate more to employ group work activities in the classroom.

  27. What a creative video! It explains exactly how creativity and ideas work! The use of Technology has enabled us to have more access to different ideas and information and to an extent help us become even more creative.

    We must also keep in mind that we as teachers have to share ideas with each other sometimes even activities we have in mind especially if it has worked successfully with the students. That was we can even modify the idea into something better and then sharing it. Ideas have to to with a kind of give and take relationship. One person shares a thought with someone, and this someone can suggest another idea or ‘a piece of the puzzle’ to modify the idea.

  28. “We humans have not yet achieved our full creative potential primarily because every child’s creativity is not properly nurtured. The critical role of imagination, discovery and creativity in a child’s education is only beginning to come to light and, even within the educational community, many still do not appreciate or realize its vital importance.”

    (Reference: http://www.jpb.com/creative/Creativity_in_Education.pdf)

    This video is so interesting and creative. We as future teachers need to produce and deliver creative and immaginative lessons. These elements will help to engage and motivate and our students to participate in the learning process. We need to help our students to engage actively with schooling. Such engagement will lead to higher quality educational achievements, and these in turn will prepare the way for a dynamic process of engagement, learning and achievement throughout life.

    Education serves as a tool with which our imagination and curiosity can be enhanced. The use of computer technology in education plays an role in helping students to achieve their full development potential. Moreover, education plays an important part in preparing students to go into the world, therefore clear there should be a connection between the world and the classroom. Unless education reflects the world in which it exists, it has no relevance for the students.

  29. Creativity is the key word in this video. Sometimes when preparing lesson plans, especially after a day full of lessons, you’re not always into it and most of the time finds it difficult to get something creative. Other times you’re just driving and when you see something in the street or on a billboard or just from watching TV you come up with wonderful ideas on how to prepare the lesson based on creativity. This means that most of the time creative ideas come from episodes in your life or from events you pass through which gives you ideas to prepare creative lessons.

  30. I think this video is relevant to both us as teachers and to our students as learners. If, as the video states, good ideas come from combining our own thoughts and hunches with other ideas, sometimes ideas which we get form other people then it would be beneficial to give our students the opportunity to work together as a team, to share and build ideas.
    I think this also shows us the importance of teachers keeping contact with each other, and creating a sort of network. If all teachers shared their ideas about teaching, and we combined these ideas together, imagine what kind of amazing material could come out of it.
    I have already seen this taking place to a certain extent. In schools, some Heads of Department hold a weekly meeting for teachers of particular subjects. This not only gives them the opportunity to discuss certain issues that may have come up but also to share ideas about teaching. With the internet and facebook and blogging and twitter, this can be done on a much greater scale. All teachers, of every subject, from all over the world, could share ideas.

  31. It has become ‘easier’, so to speak, for ideas to flourish due to the fact that, because of social networking, we’re able to connect with so many more people than before that innovation has become easily accessible. In fact, companies are using Facebook, Twitter, YouTube and so many other websites to read and review user comments to further improve their products!

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