I spend a fair amount of time brainstorming, both ‘on-fees’ and in the back of my mind -it’s my default mode of thinking. There is something special, ie emergent, about the combination of brain processes that occurs when people are encouraged to shout out ideas whilst reading and listening to other people’s suggestions.
I’m always looking for ways to help enhance ideas generation. Today’s invention is a combination of tools which already exist. This is aimed at allowing people, who may be geographically remote from each other, to contribute to a brainstorming session. This way you don’t have to rely solely on the five or six people who happen to available in Company X on the afternoon in question: they are almost never the best equipped.
Each person would wear a headset into which they bawl their single-phrase contributions in the usual way and which allows them to hear the inputs of others. These words are converted by speech-to-text software and displayed as a ‘cloud’ on the screens of contributors, deliberately delayed by a second or two.
In addition, word association software could be used to spot links between elements in the existing cloud and distantly related ideas…and to display these as if they were the input of some extra, supersmart participant.