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Creativity in Software testing - Greenhouse

原创 Linux操作系统 作者:AlexQin 时间:2011-02-08 10:56:32 0 删除 编辑
Few days back I wrote on the subject of creativity and how new ideas can be generated in software testing. Today I will share how these ideas can be preserved and turned into something tangible and useful. This process of nurturing new ideas and turning them into something useful is termed as greenhousing in Sticky Mind.

I will explain how these concepts were used in developing a new product PlannedDeparture. This product solves an interesting problem - what happens to our online data after death and how to ensure that key information about our life is transferred to people we leave behind.


When an idea originates in our mind, it is very delicate and can be crushed very easily. These new ideas are vulnerable and need time to grow. Most of us are not conditioned to preserve or nurture ideas. One of the main reason for this conditioning of our mind is the need to be analytical all the time because of the number of decisions we need to make on the day to day basis. This makes all of us very judgemental and we tend to pass judgement on everything quickly.

Now if you pause and think their might be situations when you or someone else opposed an idea in haste. This could be related to implementing automation in a different way, managing environments differently or a different way of presenting status reports. Most of us condition our mind to work in a specific pattern. If we continue to follow any pattern, it blocks our ability to think anything outside it. We become so comfortable in this pattern that any slight change in approach makes us uncomfortable, we become judgemental and oppose it.

So how do we deal with our judgemental nature? One way to deal with it is by encouraging SUN and reducing RAIN. SUN is the acronym used in Sticky Mind for Suspend, Understand and Nurture and RAIN for React, Assume and INsist.

So when I started talking about the idea of managing information and online data after death many people became judgemental - because it did not make sense to many people to think about information and online data after death. It was a quick reaction - Why do I care? Let google, Facebook and thousands of other services decide what they want to do with it. Many people assumed - who will need my information after death? Many times in such situations I started insisting instead of explaining, because these questions made me defensive.

But when people stopped passing their judgement and started understanding by asking me questions on the lines of why do you think people will use it and what makes you so excited about it, planned departure began to evolve.  

When our judgemental mind is at play, we react quickly, we assume we know everything and soon start insisting instead of exploring. When an idea is considered as right or wrong, it is probably a flawed approach because ideas are just alternatives and needs exploration before getting a right or wrong label. So start suspending judgement, understanding ideas in detail and nurture them. You might find that alternative approach suggested for automation does solve a difficult problem and new format of status report makes it easier to communicate status. Expose your mind to thousands of different things to ensure that it does not become slave of a specific pattern. You can start this by thinking about key aspects of your life and online data after death.

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