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Ideas from "Understanding"
  • what does it mean to understand understanding?
  • mathematical structures that explain and generate representations in different disciplines

Ideas from "music and programming"
  • time is the essential dimension of music
  • music has structures that are similar to computer programs

Ideas from "Binary Choices"
  • exploring dualities of creativity
  • exploring dimensions of desicion making
  • creativity research: an orphan? marginal topic?

What are the key ingredients?

What are the research methods in understanding new modes of creative practice and interdisciplinary research?

What models and tools are needed to support collaboration, innovation, design, etc.?

Are there theoretical contributions needed to improve creativity?

  • enormous potential, don't know ahead of time what the impact will be

  • the things we know, we know too much about

  • conceptual clarification, standard terminology is needed

  • need models and theories of creativity

  • List of components that make up creativity - and then look at these individually

  • in theory, theory and practice are the same, in practice they are not

  • theory provides a basis for generating hypotheses

  • theory provides a basis for evaluating models and tools

  • Is creativity in IT any different from creativity in general?

    • research in the physical sciences can't be done without IT anymore

    • IT provides a new paradigm for studying reality

  • There will be no significant progress in our understanding of creativity until it is demystified.

"Any sufficiently complex technology will be indistinguishable from magic."
~ Arthur C. Clarke

  • do we need to develop an ontology of creativity?

  • understanding creativity versus supporting creativity

  • How does taking an intentional stance inform our understanding of creativity?

  • Put social scientists into creative groups.

  • What sort of theory of creativity will support our purposes?

    • What would be the attributes of a theory of creativity?

  • If we are going to get funding is to support IT and creativity, then we need a theory

  • Is creativity domain dependent or domain independent?

    • Stephen Hawkins and Madonna are creative in their own domains.

    • But they'd better stick to their day jobs.

  • It takes someone 10 years to make a creative contribution.

    • Expertise versus creativity.

We need a theory that distinguishes the difference between expertise and creativity.

need theories on designing representations and notations supporting creativity


participant observer
objective observations
Descriptive accounts
What makes a good descriptive account?
what is the research method for making something new?
use constraints in your world to enforce creativity to emmerge

rapid prototyping

  • Evaluating the product vs evaluating the process.

  • Instead of trying to define what creativity is, try to determine when creativity has happened.

Personal observations can be legitimised through second-person observations that can lead to empirical studies.

  • Hard to make environments that allow people to go beyond existing design spaces.

  • Different stages of study require different levels of rigour.

need to place the research in the broader range of research stages

  • Transformations of design spaces are easy to discuss and very difficult to formalise. The problem arises because the formal mechanisms that describe design spaces are very general; indeed they typically can represent every possible state of a symbol system. This means that the informal notion of a design space is formally represented as moves (rules) in the larger formal space. A design space transformation is then cast as a change to the rule set. Given that rule authoring is an essential part of authoring a design space in the first place, it becomes unremarkable to assert anything special about this act. Works such as Knight's Transformations of Languages of Designs do show the post facto explanatory power of rule transformations. None of this contradicts in any way the useful insight that creative processes often 'break' or 'change' the rules of the 'game', either by changing how designs are composed or how they are evaluated. It is just hard to get a convincing symbol level account.

~ How do we make more creative people?

  • Guidelines for people that want to record their creative process.

  • Focus on the union of expertise and creativity rather than the difference.

Design as a research methodology.

design as a research method

  • More powerful when the product of the design process are generic.

How about motivation, inspiration, pressure, luck, mistakes?

Next generation of IT tools to capture the creative process.

tools that capture the large number and versions of design alternatives

focus on fragements of information is a killer to creativity (need to look at ideas)

tools for finding new connections

standards can help creativity

premature standards can kill creativity

need for standards that enhance rather than stifle creativity

need criteria to stop "hopeful people" from dissipating their energy

implicit knowledge in creativity – tools are needed to help make implicit knowledge explicit

Last modified 22 May 2007 at 6:08 pm by haleden