Different Viewpoints, Greater Innovation
Inspiration: We all lose it from time to time. Sometimes we find it again in the strangest places, and other times, in the most obvious.
How many times have you gone into a meeting expecting minimal outcome only to have the light bulb go off after someone’s comment? Today, we have access to some of the brightest minds in the world thanks to collaboration technologies and virtual networking. And as a result, the spark can come from anywhere.
Take for example the Bloodhound SCC (Super Sonic Car). The ‘engineering adventure for the 21st century’ aims to not only build a car that can go 1050 mph, but to inspire and teach students about engineering, math, science, and technology. By using Cisco networking and video services, they are able to reach out to schools all over the world and inspire the engineers and scientists of the future. This is much more exciting than local robotic car racing competitions held in the engineering schools during my university days. And when a problem needs to be solved, engineers and scientists can come from anywhere—virtually—to provide different viewpoints to help troubleshoot.
Recently, I was lucky enough to attend the E.G. Conference, which I mentioned in my previous post. With a montage of presenters from a range of professions including authors, scientists, musicians, film makers, and many more, the conference proved to be an amazing source of inspiration as well a wonderful way to recharge. It also reiterated my thoughts on how important it is to obtain the viewpoints of others. One memorable session was Adam Savage, of Myth Busters fame. Savage told a great (and humbling) story about failure, which remarkably, was a wonderful example of the importance of balancing our perspectives. Another memorable session was Ginny Breen, who read poems written by her daughter, Elizabeth Bonker, who has autism. The poems were beautiful and elegant reminders that with life and especially with people, there’s much more than meets the eye. Fortunately, this once-limited-audience conference was made available to attendees anywhere through a virtual, interactive platform provided by Cisco, allowing attendees to watch live streaming or on demand.
Ultimately, if we’re not able to extend inspirational experiences, we’re squandering opportunity. And that’s why it’s incumbent on us to find ways to use technology in new ways—to collaborate and to bridge the distance for meaningful interactive exchanges.