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An Introduction To Design Thinking

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This is a short well organized introduction to design thinking.  Such processes are key to rapid innovation.  I especially like the discussion about trying multiple ideas to prototype rather than just the perceived best idea.

Seems like there's something to be learned from multiple prototypes. If you have time. 

I think we should consider making the time.  We can get much more out of research and development efforts if we rethink how we do R&D.  It's like a giant funnel for the most part from the start to the finish.  What about all the great ideas, variations on ideas, alternate teams, and other applications of an idea that don't see the light of day - for whatever reason - including a poor choice?  There could be much to gain if we reconsider and review past alternatives not pursued at another time.

Looking forward - especially in a lean model - we can see the horizon better as we move towards it.  Perhaps we can better see where we've been too based on new knowledge.

You're right, but there are tradeoffs.

Time spent in research might not deliver the kind of feedback a shipping product can get. 

No argument.  Ultimately the market decides and ultimately a company needs to be self sustaining.  

I think how we approach all of this has something to do with the sector/domain we are dealing in.  Your point is especially true with regard to software and similar sectors.  When we are trying to commercialize basic science where there is a broad chasm to bridge, getting to a product that ships is often riskier and takes more time with more hurdles to overcome.

Context definitely matters.

But yes, there's no substitute for genuine feedback from customers in the marketplace. 

I think we're agreeing - agreeing to get product to market to get feedback from real customers in the real marketplace is the ultimate success of a product's viability - and agreeing the path to get there will take different paths depending on context.  

Amazing scientific discoveries are happening around us.  Commercializing them is not always a clear path and can be very tough.  A chosen productization of the science and getting it to market fast (if it can be) is very important to validation (and profitability).  

There are potentially multiple somewhat different applications of the same basic science a team (or even different teams) may drive to market.  The same basic science may be applied to one or more other applications with similar possible upsides.  I don't think it is necessary to pursue these alternatives serially.  A multi application approach, applied intelligently, can improve startup success and also accelerate opportunity flow for investment. 

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