Thinkertoys: A Handbook of Creative-Thinking Techniques (2nd Edition) Paperback – June 8, 2006, by Michael Michalko (Author)
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.
“Shows you how to expand your imagination.” –Newsweek
“A special find. Period.” –Executive Edge
“A must-have book in any business setting.” –Women in Business
From the Publisher
This new edition contains updated examples, three new Thinkertoys and an entirely new group brainstorming section with five new chapters. Michael is also the author of Thinkpak (A Brainstorming Card Set), which is a novel creative-thinking tool that is designed to facilitate brainstorming sessions and Cracking Creativity (The Secrets of Creative Geniuses) which describes the common thinking strategies creative geniuses have used in the sciences, art, and industry throughout history and shows how we can apply them to become more creative in our business and personal lives.
From the Author
Most people of average intelligence, given data or some problem, can figure out the expected conventional response. When confronted with problems, we fixate on something in our past that has worked before. We ask, “What have I been taught in life, education or work on how to solve the problem?” Then we analytically select the most promising approach based on past experiences, excluding all other approaches, and work within a clearly defined direction towards the solution of the problem. Because of the soundness of the steps based on past experiences, we become arrogantly certain of the correctness of our conclusion. Typically, we think reproductively, that is on the basis of similar problems encountered in the past.
This is why we so often fail when confronted with a new problem that is similar to past experiences only in superficial ways, or on the surface, and is different from previously encountered problems in its deep structure. Interpreting such a problem through the prism of past experience will, by definition, lead the thinker astray. Reproductive thinking leads us to the usual ideas and not to original ones. If you always think the way you’ve always thought, you’ll always get what you’ve always got–the same old, same old ideas. My “Thinkertoys” are creative-thinking techniques that will change the way you think. Each “Thinkertoy” contains specific instructions and an explanation of why and how it works including anecdotes, stories, and examples of how others have implemented the technique to produce their breakthrough ideas.
About the Author
Michael Michalko is one of the most highly acclaimed creativity experts in the world. As an officer in the U.S. Army, he organized a team of NATO intelligence specialists and international academics in Frankfurt, Germany, to research, collect, and categorize all known inventive-thinking methods. His team applied these methods to various NATO military, political, and economic problems and produced a variety of breakthrough ideas and creative solutions to new and old problems. After leaving military service, he was contracted by the CIA to facilitate think tanks using his creative-thinking techniques. He specializes in providing creativity workshops, seminars, and think tanks for clients who range from individuals to Fortune 500 companies.
Paperback: 416 pages
Publisher: Ten Speed Press; 2 edition (June 8, 2006)
Product Dimensions: 7.5 x 0.9 x 9.1 inches
Shipping Weight: 1.7 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
An Essential Guide for Creative Thinking
By Michael Mandaville on October 8, 2008
This book, together with my treasured Roger von Oech books, sit prominently on my bookshelf when working on a variety of problems – software development, film production, creative writing for scripts or novels, and developing opportunities in this mediacentric age. These books break open your mind from the restrictive fences imposed on our thinking by the conventional world that we are surrounded by. These fences need to be torn down. If you are an older person (probably older than 30!), then your thinking will become ossified. Just like using your muscles, you need to rework your brain and your thinking with effort to create opportunities and connections to emerging technologies and new developments.