Weekly bits of interest - 16 May 2011

Developments and articles of interest from the last week:

  • The UK Government launched a prototype site last week called Alpha.gov.uk, testing a new approach to a new single website for central government (H/t to Craig Thomler). The site has two overarching objectives:

    1. "To test, in public, a prototype of a new, single UK Government website. 

    2. To design & build a UK Government website using open, agile, multi-disciplinary product development techniques and technologies, shaped by an obsession with meeting user needs."[1. This quote is not covered by the Creative Commons licence or Commonwealth Copyright. From Alpha.gov.uk team blog accessed 16 May 2011 at http://blog.alpha.gov.uk/about]

  • In this post, Scott Anthony looks at how bordeom can drive innovation. "Our eyes are underrated innovation tools. It's easy to get caught up in a whirlwind of activities and miss opportunities that are literally right in front of your face. Make a regular habit of just standing and watching. You may be surprised by what you see."[2. This quote is not covered by the Creative Commons licence or Commonwealth Copyright. From Scott Anthony "How Bordeom Can Drive Innovation" 12 May 2011 accessed at http://blogs.hbr.org/anthony/2011/05/how_boredom_can_drive_innovation.html]

  • Gijs van Wulfen advises on how to structure your ideation approach including starting ideation only when there is a real business need, define clear criteria, and use both structure and creativity in your approach.

  • In this piece, innovation expert Stephen Shapiro challenges the value of iterative development in innovation and the lessons that come with failure. "Open innovation is a massively parallel process where failures and successes happen at the same time. You post a challenge and you get dozens or hundreds of solutions. Some won’t work. But all you need is one solution that does work. And with open innovation, you only pay for the solutions that do work. Failures cost you nothing in terms of time and money. With internal iterative development, you pay for the successes and the failures. Do you really learn enough from your failures to justify the extra cost and time involved?"[3. This quote is not covered by the Creative Commons licence or Commonwealth Copyright. From Stephen Shapiro "Why Edison Was Wrong" 9 May 2011 accessed at http://www.openforum.com/idea-hub/topics/innovation/article/why-edison-was-wrong]

  •  Tim Kastelle from the University of Queensland recommends a talk from innovation expert Nilofer Merchant on innovation which raises some key points such as that new ideas should change us, that we often filter out ideas that we have not encountered before, and that ideas grow when they are shared.

As always, please feel free to identify any other developments or articles of interest in the comments below.