Tuesday, June 8

Innovation and Creativity

My study of the use of patents continues.  A lecture, 'Charles Leadbeater On Innovation' on TED.com supports the open access of ideas and innovations as the world is changing, as new inventions are no longer the sole creation of highly-educated, lab-dwelling, research scientists.  Many 20th and 21st century inventions have come from the masses to be used by the masses.  

Leadbeater has studied innovation and creativity and he believes that the users of new ideas and innovations are the people that will dictate its use.  We may participate in the creation of a new idea, process or object but its use may not be known to the inventor until we see what others can do with it.  He states that the story of telephony, the use of voice communication over distances, including SMS, was created by people (one being Friedhelm Hillebrand) who did not understand how it would be used, until teenagers accessed the technology and rapidly began exercising their thumbs to text as if it was as essential to life as sleep.  We the people will have more of an effect on the culture that circumnavigates us, as we participate in decisions regarding inventions' uses. 

Why Is the Use of Consumer Innovation and Open Source Access Essential for New Developments?
1.  Most innovation and creativity is cumulative and collaborative and happens over a period of time not a single moment of brilliance (ie. Wikipedia).
2.  Users are the source of big disruptive innovations because they are a part of smaller groups and communities that encourage free thinking and new ideas.  Large corporations support ideas that have worked before, especially they look new but are merely repackaged.

Leadbeater takes the viewer down a pathway that suggests the users of new inventions will decide the  uses of new technologies and ideas, thoughts of collaboration and continual improvement that were introduced to me in the movie rip! A Remix Manifesto.    

In the Future Leadbeater Believes That:

1.  The domain of creativity will expand and that which is now closed will become more open.
2.  Public spaces and organizations will need to adapt so that there is more funding and better public policy to assist people in organizing change.

2.  The contest between two camps (ie Coke vs Pepsi, Apple vs PC) won't be such a dichotomy but there will be smaller camps along a path of invention sharing ideas with each other.

Leadbeater believes that "users will become producers."  I agree with him if we provide the space and ability of the individual to allow the use of previous ideas and inventions to create new technologies that work for modern day societies.  Part of me may still be upset if I had invented SMS and did not receive any monetary compensation, as is Hillebrand's experience.  Where is the balance?  This means I have to start researching companies and individuals who support the use of patents and controls so that the inventor does not die poor.  Perhaps one's name being spoken and repeated down the tunnel of time is more important than being buried in a gold coffin.  Can an inventor have both?  Any suggestions where I should look for pro-patent information?

Leadbeater's Talk on TED  

David Pogue's 4 Minute Song of Music Wars

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