What do China, Seagulls, and Innovation have in common? Well, not a whole lot, or so I thought. Last week, my good friend Isak Bukhman dropped by for lunch. I always enjoy chatting with Isak. He is a TRIZ Master, and we always have interesting conversations about TRIZ, Innovation, and global trends which influence the innovation landscape.
On this visit, Isak was telling me of his recent engagements in China. It seems that there is a lot of interest in China these days in TRIZ and innovation. As the tiger is waking it is aware of its laggard position in the global arena and is intensely looking for ways to change that. Isak noted that China is struggling with the issues of intellectual property—what is it, how to play in the global community, how to not be hamstrung by the intellectual property of others. There is particular interest in the methods of patent busting (a systematic approach to finding non-infringing workarounds in the face of blocking IP).
We also talked about how innovation software and TRIZ achieve similar goals. TRIZ provides a structured way to lead the practitioner to a more expansive and comprehensive way of thinking about a problem and incorporating distilled innovation wisdom. Good innovation software does the same thing.
So, where do Seagulls enter into the picture? Coincidentally on the same day that Isak was coming for lunch, a funny post appeared on getFreshMinds. The post featured this video of a clever crisp-filching seagull.
I don’t know that I would call Sam an innovator, but the clip did remind me that Isak does on occasion give copies of Jonathan Livingston Seagull to his students as a homily on creativity. Certainly, we can all take from this latter seagull the lesson that perfecting innovation practice is a continuous journey of learning.