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Wednesday, November 24, 2004

Santa's Brand New Bag
Stocking Stuffers for Idea Guys & Gals
With the Thanksgiving holiday just a day away, I'm not certain if I'll get many chances to post before the biggest shopping day of the year -- I actually know people that plan their post-turkey-day shopping excursion like it's some military exercise -- so please consider adding these items to your holiday "hit list".

My friend Kes has created an INCREDIBLY cool brainstorming board game called MetaMemes. It's part Cranium and part Trivial Pursuit. It needs to be experienced to be believed. A great idea-generating gift for we "idea types" to be sure, but it's still fun for simply getting together and playing with friends as a straightforward board game.

Get an overview of the game and see sample cards at the official website:

PPO Cubes
If the MeteMemes game used dice, they'd have to be PPO Cubes.

While the name (in my humble opinion) lacks a bit in the creativity department, there's nothing lacking in this item's core concept of useability in the idea-generating department!

PPO stands for "Personal Pattern Overlay" each face of this 12-sided die has a colorful (albeit blank) dot. That's where the "Personal Overlay" part comes into play -- YOU get to decide what sort of creativity keywords are added to the dice.

Add words, pictures, logos, symbols, etc. to each side of the dice, concentrate on the project/problem/challenge for which you'd like to create ideas, and then let 'em fly! Use the stimuli chosen by the random roll to explore ideas on your topic. Since you chose the areas and concepts, the ideas and associations come quickly and easily. PPO Cubes are an excellent stocking stuffer.


Free the Genie Cards
I'm a fan of creativity cards decks, especially Roger von Oech's Whack Pack and Charlie Girsch's Creativity a la Card. Free the Genie is unique in that there's a free online version (yes, I know there's an online Whack Pack) but Free the Genie has several card game options/creativity readings from which to choose -- not just the "One Card Oracle" of the Whack Pack, but "Either / Or D'oeuvre", "Incubation Nation", and "What Suits You." Each game adds an edge and focus to the creative exercise.

Play it online, and then buy your own set of cards from Idea Champions (there is a TON of other innovation tools and toys available on their site!)


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