Chance favors the connected mind (Where Good Ideas Come From)

I’ve read the reviews, I’ve seen the video (also embedded below), and I’ve listened in on the webinar. And now that the UPS guy has made his afternoon delivery, I can finally read Steven Johnson‘s (@stevenbjohnson) latest book Where Good Ideas Come From – The Natural History of Innovation. (Though it is going to have to wait a day or two until I finish The Mesh: Why the Future of Business Is Sharing.)

Having read many of Johnson’s previous books, I know that I like his writing style and approach and fully expect to enjoy reading this book. More than anything, though, I’m looking forward to his ideas on ideas, especially the idea that chance favors the connected mind. If this isn’t enough to convince you that you should probably go out and get the book, please read on.

A couple of tidbits from reviews:

  • In “Where Good Ideas Come From: The Natural History of Innovation,” Steven Johnson, an author and Internet entrepreneur, draws on natural science, intellectual history and 21st-century technology to identify the environments that are conductive to innovation. Johnson doesn’t define “good ideas” — or indicate whether their pathways to implementation differ from those of “bad ideas.”  – The Oregonian
  • Where do good ideas come from? That is the question posed by Steven Johnson, a writer known for the agility with which he makes interdisciplinary analogies, in his latest book. His “natural history of innovation” provides a taxonomy of seven ways in which new ideas can sprout from old ones. But this is no management text: for each of his seven patterns of innovation, Mr Johnson provides wide-ranging examples from technology, the natural world and culture. – The Economist

Luis Suarez (@elsua) has some excellent thoughts on Johnson’s TED talk on the subject, along with this ringing endorsement:

Do you happen to have about 18 minutes of your precious busy time … to spare to go ahead and watch one of those TED Talks that will surely keep you thinking for a while on what true innovation is all about? You do? Then you have got to go and watch Steven Johnson‘s Talk on Where Good Ideas Come From. It’s worth the 18 minutes and so much more!

Johnson is currently touring for the book, and will be in St. Louis on 14 October. (I must now make a choice: stick around at the Strange Loop Conference for theStrange Passions party or duck out to see Johnson. Decisions, decisions.)

One thought on “Chance favors the connected mind (Where Good Ideas Come From)

    Science requires any formula/process to be identifiable and repeatable. The Law of Self-preservation may well be at the root of random murders, massacres & or suicides. The below mentioned process makes possible Peace Cultivation & Violence Prevention within society.
    When confronted by would-be criminals, unprepared intended-victims feel physically and/or psychologically threatened. When the conscious ego is threatened, bruised and/or punctured due to fear and/or danger, a window opens to the unconscious & exposes a negative energy pocket, which projects, absorbs and/or mirrors negative self-images to others.
    Ironically, the Law of Self-preservation innately compels the would-be criminal to destroy the negative self-image mirrored by the unprepared intended-victim. Is this the answer to the heart-felt question WHY when senseless carnage takes place? The below mentioned wording/programming generates the alpha wave shield of positive energy that can be imbedded on a subliminal level and coupled with the triggering mechanism of the conscious ego being threatened, bruised and/or punctured due to fear and/or danger.
    We share one universal mind, one humanity and one planet.
    Therefore, what we do to another, we in turn do to ourselves.
    And what we do to ourselves, we in turn do to others
    (this wording aids in preventing suicide).
    Had our circumstances in life been reversed,
    Then our positions now too, would be reversed.
    Let us have only love, compassion and understanding
    For one another, for we are all a part of each other.
    This process when activated subliminally mirrors a positive self-esteem self-image to others, thus aborting the stress/crime encounter.
    Comment by Elizabeth Mehan Calter


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