How Innovators Think

IBM has a reputation for corporate precision and blue suits. It also has a well-earned reputation for innovation. The reason can be traced to IBM’s single-word mantra, “Think.”

Innovators think. Furthermore, they think about thinking, and they think in certain ways.

In a great article in Fast Company entitled “Lessons in Innovation From Six of the World’s Most Creative Thinkers,” authors Ali Rushdan and Alrick Pagnon describe how some of the world’s best innovators think, including Hayao Miyazaki, Maya Angelou, Jeff Bezos, Ferran Adrià, Bunker Roy, and Sangeeta Bathia.

Here are three

25 Most Retweeted #Innovation #Quotes

When people discuss influential technologies, the talk usually gravitates towards hot topics like Big Data, wearables, and the Internet of Things. However, I have found that some of the most influential technology still uses only 140 characters or less–in the form of tweets about innovation.

Here are 25 of my most retweeted #innovation #quotes:

  • "Anyone who says failure is not an option has also ruled out innovation." - Seth Godin
  • "The best way to get a good idea is to have a lot of ideas." - Linus Pauling
  • "Following the rules of your industry will only get you so far." - Max McKeown

More and More Trends for Innovators

In the classic 1946 movie "It's a Wonderful Life," success could be summed up with one word: "plastics." The top trends for 2015 can be summed up with another word: "digital."

In a Harvard Business Review article entitled "The Tech Trends You Can’t Ignore in 2015," Amy Webb identifies six key areas:

  • Deep learning: computers that "study," enhancing artificial intelligence by processing vast quantities of data in order to "learn," including images and other non-textual media.
  • Smart virtual personal assistants: digital assistants that make helpful interactions in business and personal life,

How to Innovate With a Reality Distortion Field

"What if we could beat IBM?" "What if we could colonize Mars?" These are voices from the Reality Distortion Field.

Certain innovative leaders seem to have an aura around them that bends reality so that anything becomes possible. Steve Jobs was such a leader. Elon Musk is another. In the early days of Apple, this phenomenon was dubbed the “Reality Distortion Field.”

Those who enter the Reality Distortion Field begin to believe that impossible things really are possible, and soon, they find themselves doing them.

Are Innovators Artists?

Once I saw a mural containing two phrases: “Art for Art’s Sake,” and “Art for Man’s Sake.” Those paradoxical phrases capture the essence of a profound debate, not only for art, but also for innovation.

It’s been said that the difference between fine artists and commercial artists is that commercial artists can pay their rent. Whether or not you agree, the point is that the commercial artist provides value that someone is willing to pay for while the artist is still alive.

Because of my background in digital imaging, I worked with some famous artists in New York to create high-end giclee