IdeaConnection Innovation

Posts by Peter

Be an angel, dear, and fix my bra.

Be an angel, dear, and fix my bra.

Dec-15-08 By Peter
Scott Dutton's wife complained that the semi-circular struts would slip out from under the cups of her bra.

Instead of mumbling, "Oh, really?" and continuing to focus on whatever guy-thing he was doing at the time, Scott came up with a permanent fix for his wife and scored a gold medal for Invention of the Year at the British Invention Show.

The Bra Angel bra repair kit was also selected from more than 200 other inventions to be included in the GMTV show and the BBC's The One Show.

So much for the applause. If Scott wants to make a success of his invention, he'll have to support his creative brilliance with cool, marketing smarts.

Brainstorming Better. A little help for my friend.

Oct-02-08 By Peter
A colleague wrote to me today.I wanted to bounce a premise off you. The Ad Club asked me to lead a workshop in December around a topic. I proposed "Better Brainstorming in Today's Idea Economy."

What I like is that brainstorming is something everyone takes for granted and something everyone believes they're good at. But as we know, there are good sessions and bad sessions. If you had to list the top 3-5 factors in successful brainstorming sessions, what would they be? I gave my friend my first-thing-in-the-morning, top-of-my-head response. I've polished it up a bit and it's below.
I’ll show you mine, if you’ll show me yours

I’ll show you mine, if you’ll show me yours

Sep-18-08 By Peter
Most of us were taught to share at a very early age. What happened? A big chunk of the world's population still starves every day, even though we know that when we do share, we all benefit. Especially when it comes to scientific learning.

Sharing among professionals is called collaboration. And as the world gets more complex and our challenges more daunting, services like our own IdeaConnection arise to enable and encourage collaboration among scientific minds around the world.

Likewise, the more we discover and invent, the more critical it becomes that we not only help each other solve problems but that we share what we learn. Recent advances in the highly complex field of genetics illustrate the need for an open-door policy of collaboration.
Literally Cool Inventions

Literally Cool Inventions

Aug-26-08 By Peter
In an earlier post, Old invention deserves a new life, I dug up the Crosley icy ball--a way to refrigerate without electricity. Since then, I've found some even cooler approaches to refrigeration. They also deserve some life.

Science News reports a Chip-size refrigerator that could fit inside future laptops. It still runs on electricity, but a lot less, and it removes a lot more heat than the current fans system in your laptop. How it works:
Thar’s gold in them thar crowds!

Thar’s gold in them thar crowds!

Aug-24-08 By Peter
Warning: It's coming. Whatever you do to make money, no matter how innovative, crowdsourcing will deliver it cheaper from the world at large. If not today, soon.

Just ask any professional photographer who has labored to peddle pics to stock photo houses. What they used to get paid $300 a shot for, buyers now can get for a dollar.

Crowdsourcing is sort of like outsourcing with a captialistic vengence and technological superpowers. So it goes with innovation.
Innovator makes bicycle bumps a bonus

Innovator makes bicycle bumps a bonus

Aug-21-08 By Peter
I'm tempted to make this post one of those "if life gives you lemons, make lemonade" lessons. But I won't, because there's so much more to the story. It begins this way: a poor, yong man in India realizes that the bumps on the rugged, rural roads he travels might be converted--literally--into foward motion.

So Kanak Das retrofitted his bicycle. Now the shock absorbers convert the energy they absorb, when the moving bike hits bumps in the road, into force that assists the pedals.
Old invention deserves a new life

Old invention deserves a new life

Aug-20-08 By Peter
In 1858 Ferdinand Carré invented a cooling device, based on the work of Michael Faraday, that can work without electricity.

More recently an enterprising Adam Grosser proposed re-introducing his redesigned version Carré's invention to parts of the world where refrigeraion is not available and where it could save lives.
Added-Function Funnels

Added-Function Funnels

Aug-19-08 By Peter
Have you ever wondered why it takes so long to come up with some inventions? The kind that make you go, "Duh! Why didn't I think of that?"

Why did it take so long to put wheels on luggage? Why did we have to go through so many seat-belt contraptions before we settled on the current, easy-pull, easy-stow version? Remember passive restraints?
Innovation Strikes Like Lightning

Innovation Strikes Like Lightning

Aug-18-08 By Peter
Courtesy Wikimedia

When the unexpected jumps out and smacks you in the face, it usually means, "Pay attention! A great innovation waits to be found." So we just might look for a connection between Usain Bolt's record-smashing 100-meter, gold-medal dash and the fact that he could be called a 200-meter specialist.

New Conrete Clears the Air

Aug-17-08 By Peter
In the Dutch province of Overijssel, a stretch of road has been paved with a surface of air-purifying concrete. Meant to fight pollution, the road consists of concrete paving stones spiked with a titanium dioxide-based additive. In sunlight, this additive should bind to nitrogen oxide particles spewed from car exhausts and converts them into friendly nitrates.

Page: 1  2     Next»