Invention Centers

16 February 2016

Alan Kay:

Invention centers are 20 to 40 people doing odd things. Innovation is the process of taking something that’s already been invented and packaging it nicer.

Problem-finding is about how to get something out of almost nothing in some new area. You're by definition not doing something incremental. There’s a lot of playful stuff going on. The probability of a good idea is pretty low. Most of the ideation that happens [in an invention center] are things that get rejected, which is normal in this line of work. Very few people understand that.


The shortest lived group at Xerox PARC was "Office of the Future," because Xerox executives would not leave them alone.

I chose the most innocuous name for my own group, the Learning Research Group. Nobody knew what it meant, so they left us alone to invent-object oriented programming and the GUI.

So weird that something like CDG is backed by SAP.

(via Avdi Grimm)