Thinkertoys: A Handbook of Creative-Thinking Techniques / Edition 2

Thinkertoys: A Handbook of Creative-Thinking Techniques / Edition 2

4.4 19
by Michael Michalko

ISBN-10: 1580087736

ISBN-13: 9781580087735

Pub. Date: 06/28/2006

Publisher: Potter/Ten Speed/Harmony

Rethink the Way You Think
In hindsight, every great idea seems obvious. But how can you be the person who comes up with those ideas?
In this revised and expanded edition of his groundbreaking Thinkertoys, creativity expert Michael Michalko reveals life-changing tools that will help you think like a genius. From the linear to the

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Rethink the Way You Think
In hindsight, every great idea seems obvious. But how can you be the person who comes up with those ideas?
In this revised and expanded edition of his groundbreaking Thinkertoys, creativity expert Michael Michalko reveals life-changing tools that will help you think like a genius. From the linear to the intuitive, this comprehensive handbook details ingenious creative-thinking techniques for approaching problems in unconventional ways. Through fun and thought-provoking exercises, you’ll learn how to create original ideas that will improve your personal life and your business life. Michalko’s techniques show you how to look at the same information as everyone else and see something different.
With hundreds of hints, tricks, tips, tales, and puzzles, Thinkertoys will open your mind to a world of innovative solutions to everyday and not-so-everyday problems.

Product Details

Potter/Ten Speed/Harmony
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7.44(w) x 9.15(h) x 0.87(d)

Table of Contents

Preface to the New Edition    xi
The Barking Cat (Introduction)    xvii
initiation    1
Chapter One: Original Spin     3
Chapter Two: Mind Pumping     11
Chapter Three: Challenges     22
Chapter Four: Thinkertoys     35
Part One: Linear Thinkertoys     41
Group A
Chapter Five: False Faces (reversal)     43
Chapter Six: Slice and Dice (attribute listing)     53
Chapter Seven: Cherry Split (fractionation)     60
Chapter Eight: Think Bubbles (mind mapping)     66
Chapter Nine: SCAMPER (questions)     72
Group B
Chapter Ten: Tug-of-War (force-field analysis)     111
Chapter Eleven: Idea Box (morphological analysis)     117
Chapter Twelve: Idea Grid (FCB grid)     126
Chapter Thirteen: Lotus Blossom (diagramming)     132
Chapter Fourteen: Phoenix (questions)     137
Chapter Fifteen: The great Transpacific Airline and Storm Door Company (matrix)     144
Chapter Sixteen: Future Fruit (future scenarios)     150
Group C
Chapter Seventeen: Brutethink (random stimulation)     157
Chapter Eighteen: Hall of Fame (forced connection)     170
Chapter Nineteen: Circle of Opportunity (forced connection)     179
Chapter Twenty: Ideatoons (pattern language)     184
Chapter Twenty-One: Clever Trevor (talk to a stranger)     190
Part Two: Intuitive Thinkertoys    199
Chapter Twenty-Two: Chilling Out (relaxation)     203
Chapter Twenty-Three: Blue Roses (intuition)     210
Chapter Twenty-Four: The Three B’s (incubation)     218
Chapter Twenty-Five: rattlesnakes and Roses (analogies)     223
Chapter Twenty-Six: Stone Soup (fantasy questions)     239
Chapter Twenty-Seven: True and False (janusian thinking)    248
Chapter Twenty-Eight: Dreamscape (dreams)     256
Chapter Twenty-Nine: Da Vinci’s Technique (drawing)     261
Chapter Thirty: Dali’s Technique (hypnogogic imagery)     268
Chapter Thirty-One: Not Kansas (imagery)     273
Chapter Thirty-Two: The Shadow (psychosynthesis)     281
Chapter Thirty-Three: The Book of the Dead (hieroglyphics)     287
Part Three: The Spirit of Koinonia    293
Chapter Thirty-Four: Warming Up     299
Chapter Thirty-Five: Brainstorming    311
Chapter Thirty-Six: Orthodox Brainstorming    323
Chapter Thirty-Seven: Raw Creativity    341
Part Four: Endtoys    363
Chapter Thirty-Eight: Murder Board     365
Chapter Thirty-Nine: You Are Not a Field of Grass    374
Index    381
About the Author    395

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Thinkertoys 4.4 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 19 reviews.
garydale More than 1 year ago
Do you need any new ideas for practical designs? How about when something is wrong with your business and you cannot put your finger on it? Did you ever need to brainstorm but not have anyone else around? Have you ever been stuck with writer's block and for the life of you could not get back to work? In other words, have you ever been stuck with any mental problem that you felt that you cannot solve? If this is the case I think you should have a look at Michael Michalko's latest book, Thinkertoys: A Handbook of Creative-Thinking Techniques. Thinkertoys is a great play on words - anyone who grew up in the United States playing with Tinker Toys would not have a hard time remembering the name of this book. But beyond the title, Michael Michalko has done better than a yeoman's job of cataloguing tried and true techniques and exercises that work individually and for groups. Not a left brained person you say? You don't need to be. Not a right brained person? Again, you don't need to be. These tools that Michael Michalko provides puts you in a position that the outcome will be the product of great creative thinking as long as you actually do the thinker work that goes along with the exercise. The entire book pushes the reader to think outside of his or her comfort zone when solving problems, creating ideas, etc. Some of these tools I have already been working on and implementing myself. Let me give you an example. In addition to my other work I recently have become a monthly columnist with a magazine where I give advice based upon my knowledge and experience. But to be a columnist is very difficult in a way because you have to remain fresh - the material much be both focused and new every issue. Many regular columnists (and bloggers) use different methods to do this. For instance, Jack Welch actually goes on Twitter and asks followers to send him interesting questions or problems. As such I turned to Michalko's book and found an exercise that really helped to generate ideas for the column. (If you want to know specifically which tool this was contact me through my website and I will give a full explanation). Because of this tool though I not only found enough ideas, but rather more than enough ideas. I have now written several columns in advance for the magazine and am pretty much finished with the entire year's work. This is the kind of result you can get from sitting down and working with Thinkertoys - I can personally attest! Also, Michael Michalko has a related product called Thinkpak: A Brainstorming Card Deck. I went out to my local bookstore and bought this card set. It is a great companion to Thinkertoys because each card is directly related to a principle or tool in Thinkertoys. So I carry this card deck with me now along with a list of issues I need to resolve when I travel. Sometimes I pull this book or these cards out because I have work to do and sometimes I do it because, dammit, it is just a good workout for the old noggin!
jerry50 More than 1 year ago
If a significant portion of your life requires creativity that is attached to solving real-world problems, this book is tremendous. It offers tons of techniques with great details on how to get the ideas you need. It's a wonderful and useful read. In fact, it is, without a doubt, the most useful book I have ever read.
Mae22 More than 1 year ago
I facilitate creative thinking workshops and provide each participant a copy of this book. The chapter on SCAMPER is worth the price alone. You will find each tool well explained with examples. The "Ideabox" is one of the best tools you can use which also has a section with good examples. The author's second book Cracking Creativity repeats most of the tools with less examples and more theory. I highly recommend this book as a reference for innovation tools.
Mikki More than 1 year ago
This is a tremendous book that has changed my whole perspective toward creativity. It's a collection of well-researched and documented creative-thinking techniques that has helped me produce tons of new ideas, thoughts and insights. I bought a copy for my my supervisor at work and she bought copies for everyone in our department. We now meet for brainstorming sessions on a regular basis using the techniques from the book.
Guest More than 1 year ago
This book is a must for anyone in business who is in need of fresh, limitless ways to create the ideas and creative strategies businesses need these days of uncertainty and complexity. I got my copy from my manager who gives one to all new employees.
Guest More than 1 year ago
Creative-thinking expert Michael Michalko has applied his talents to the service of the U.S. Army, the NATO military, and the CIA now, he offers the updated second edition of Thinkertoys: A Handbook of Creative-Thinking Techniques, a jam-packed wealth of brain-twisting visual and verbal puzzles and exercises designed to stimulate new ways of solving problems and looking at situations. Exercises designed to stimulate logic and reason, intuition, brainstorming skills and much more are offered in accessible and adaptable terms, for self-study or use in a larger creative thinking workshop. Sure to captivate the reader with its thinking-out-of-the-box puzzles and even more important, advice for reexamining old problems with a fresh perspective, Thinkertoys is enthusiastically recommended for anyone striving to expand their creative mindset. As Michael says 'Change the way you look at things and the things you look at change.
Guest More than 1 year ago
There are lots of good books on different aspects of creativity out in the world, but there really aren't many that you can regard as a book to buy if you really want to change the way you think to become generally more creative. One is Thinkertoys now in its second edition. One of the great things about a good creativity book is that it gets better with age, rather that dating. Creativity doesn't change - and neither do the effectiveness of good techniques. In fact in this case I'd say it has got better. It's partly because this an expanded and revised version, but also because it's more obvious that Thinkertoys really stands out from the crowd. Practically from page one, this book leads you into the fundamental challenge of creativity - tackling the assumptions we make all the time, and that's an experience you will find repeated time and time again.
Albany More than 1 year ago
I really recommend Thinkertoys if you want to increase your creativity level. It has a lot of exercises that will help you find that idea you're looking for.
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This book presents a lot of useful tools for thinking. This is an excellent resource for creative thinkers -- I don't know how else to describe the book.
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