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where good ideas come from: are you allowing for idea collisions?

“Chance favors the connected mind.”
– Steven Johnson, Where Good Ideas Come From

I’ve been wondering about connectivity. Steven Johnson stumbled upon some fascinating insights regarding connectivity while investigating just what his new book’s title says – where good ideas come from. Most great ideas take years to develop. One person has a half idea. And that half idea takes form in a “slow hunch” – incubation, fertility. For 10 years maybe.

Then, boom. One person’s half idea collides with another person’s half idea. Now, the Internet. “The historic evolution of connectivity,” as Johnson tags it, has multiplied the potential for serendipitous idea collisions.

The other day, Will Burns of Ideasicle interviewed me to talk about creativity, connectivity, meditation, embodiment. But following his interview of me, I wanted to interview him. He pools 18 creativity experts to volley solutions to a company’s problem – and they do so virtually, in no single room, no face-to-face contact. His insights about collaboration were mixing up with some ruminations I’ve been having. Ping. Pong. Bam. Ideas colliding in delightful ways. (stay tuned for the interview)

When I hung up with Will, I buzzed. I buzzed because I connected with someone who’s spent his life in a field – marketing – wholly different from mine and yet our conversation sent ideas in me fluttering.

What about you? Have you connected with someone that led to a potential idea collision?

See you in the woods,

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