myths of innovation

The Myths of Innovation by Scott Berkun

I’m going to review the book, Myths of Innovation by Scott Berkun.

In Scott’s book, he busts up the “myth of epiphany” by breaking down the history and process of how new ideas become reality. He explains the methods behind innovation, challenges innovation faces and explains how it just isn’t one guy alone, who has the best idea.

I really enjoyed this book.

I like to think myself as an innovative person, and as Scott explained the challenges that innovators or innovative ideas come up against, I could related all too well. Scott explains that innovators don’t usually find support with the mainstream and that often drives them to work alone on problems others ignore, and how this could explain the connection between “breakthrough thinkings” and new companies. That makes me think of the Googles and Microsofts of the world, both of who are just two of some of the bigger examples of breakthrough companies.

I liked how Scott pulled in tons of information from other sources and linked it into a way that made it all make sense. The book had lots of content from other sources, that helps put some of these larger ideas into perspective for me. Scott also references some of the points from Malcolm Gladwell’s book, Outliers, (which I also enjoyed), such as the 10,000 rule and the influence of opportunity.

What I found particularly helpful, was Scott’s sections on helpful suggestions, such as “Creative Thinking Hacks, “How To Pitch an idea,” and “How To Stay Motivated.” This is particular challenge for me so I really appreciated the information and definitely plan to leverage what I learned in 2011.

Now, I read this version on the Kindle, so I don’t know if this is the same in the printed book, but I also liked the way all the chapter’s footnotes are at the end of the each chapter. I found this a refreshing way to read the footnotes while the content of the chapter is still fresh in my mind

Finally, I enjoyed Scott’s writing style, his sense of humor, and that way he was able to combine and weave them into the book. I would recommend this book, and look forward to reading Scott’s other works.

You can find the O’reilly Page for the Myths of Innovation here.

holding the spoon the right way

At work I’ve been doing some skunk works projects on Enterprise Collaboration, or Enterprise 2.0.  I enjoy setting up new things and seeing how they work and fit together. I also enjoy teaching new things to people and seeing them digest new ideas, so this has been something I’ve really enjoyed working on.

Cisco Networks released Cisco Quad, and I thought the best description I heard was, “When you are at home, you are addicted to Facebook… when you are work, you are addicted to this…”

That sums up my sentiment exactly.

There have been some well intentioned, yet primitive attempts at increasing collaboration across the company… wait… let me rephrase that.  People have been collaborating all long, via primate methods, at least by what has been available.

We have Microsoft’s Sharepoint 2007 in house, and I’ve become very knowledge about it in the last half of the year.  And I do see it as a potential enabler of virtual collaboration, but to me, it seems lacking in several areas.  Granted, our implementation has suffered from stability and usage issues, but it only recently began gaining any noticeable traction almost eight months after it’s initial implementation.

But, it hasn’t been good for sharing media, or spontaneous communication, and I certainly realize the potential is there.  I’ve seen Sharepoint 2010and it is an improvement, but unless it becomes part of our daily habits, or routine, Sharepoint 2010 could still languish.

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Making Snow at home!

we had a white Christmas

Well, it is almost that time of year and since here in Georgia, we did get snow on Christmas Day, (the first time since 1882), I thought it might be cool to post my video of me and my brother-in-law making snow last year.   I was surprised at the amount of views this got on Youtube and I’ve been enjoying reading the comments.

I don’t know if we’ll try again this year, but I bet we will.