Chindogu: the Japanese Art of Invention A hands-off workshop NCIIA Conference 2011 ©  Francisco Ruiz, 2011
Dedicated to the Japanese people ©  Francisco Ruiz, 2011
Outline <ul><li>Why? </li></ul><ul><li>Definitions </li></ul><ul><li>Examples </li></ul><ul><li>Exercise 1 </li></ul><ul><...
What's inside this logo?
Innovation Pyramid ©  Francisco Ruiz, 2011 <ul><li>Ventures </li></ul><ul><li>Business   Plans </li></ul><ul><li>Prototype...
Some definitions <ul><li>Chindogu: [ ‘tʃin-do-goo ] </li></ul><ul><ul><li>= valuable/priceless tool </li></ul></ul><ul><li...
Really “not-useful”? ©  Francisco Ruiz, 2011
The 10 rules of Chindogu <ul><li>1.  “A Chindogu cannot be for real use” </li></ul><ul><ul><li>It must be an invention tha...
The 10 rules of Chindogu <ul><li>6.  “Humor must not be the sole reason for creating Chindogu” </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Altho...
Chindogu vs. Patentable <ul><li>Patentable: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>New </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Not Obvious </li></ul></u...
Exercise 1: Chindogu ©  Francisco Ruiz, 2011 Draw a not-useful idea for a personal item Time: 10 minutes
USPTO Chindogu <ul><li>Beerbrella </li></ul><ul><li>United States Patent 6637447 </li></ul><ul><li>Inventors: </li></ul><u...
More than 100 years <ul><li>Grave Alarm </li></ul><ul><li>US Pat. 500072 </li></ul><ul><li>Issued 1893 </li></ul><ul><li>I...
How many appliances to change a lightbulb? <ul><li>Light bulb changer </li></ul><ul><li>United States Patent 6826983 </li>...
No comment ©  Francisco Ruiz, 2011 US Patent 3216423 Apparatus for Facilitating the Birth of a Child by Centrifugal Force ...
Exercise 2: not-Chindogu ©  Francisco Ruiz, 2011 Draw a more useful version of your Chindogu Time: 10 minutes
Why are we so hung up on usability? <ul><li>For: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Innovation requires a user </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><...
Local maxima ©  Francisco Ruiz, 2011
Invention as an Art <ul><li>The classical Arts: </li></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Painting </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Scu...
Recap ©  Francisco Ruiz, 2011 What did we learn? How to use it in class?
Thanks! <ul><li>Want to help pass the word? </li></ul><ul><li>[email_address] </li></ul>©  Francisco Ruiz, 2011
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Open 2011 - Creativity Workshop - Chindogu-The Japanese Art of Invention

  1. 1. Chindogu: the Japanese Art of Invention A hands-off workshop NCIIA Conference 2011 © Francisco Ruiz, 2011
  2. 2. Dedicated to the Japanese people © Francisco Ruiz, 2011
  3. 3. Outline <ul><li>Why? </li></ul><ul><li>Definitions </li></ul><ul><li>Examples </li></ul><ul><li>Exercise 1 </li></ul><ul><li>More examples </li></ul><ul><li>Exercise 2 </li></ul><ul><li>Reflection and take-aways </li></ul>
  4. 4. What's inside this logo?
  5. 5. Innovation Pyramid © Francisco Ruiz, 2011 <ul><li>Ventures </li></ul><ul><li>Business Plans </li></ul><ul><li>Prototypes </li></ul><ul><li>Ideas </li></ul>
  6. 6. Some definitions <ul><li>Chindogu: [ ‘tʃin-do-goo ] </li></ul><ul><ul><li>= valuable/priceless tool </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Developed by Kenji Kawakami: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>“ 101 unuseless Japanese inventions” </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>not really useless </li></ul></ul></ul>© Francisco Ruiz, 2011
  7. 7. Really “not-useful”? © Francisco Ruiz, 2011
  8. 8. The 10 rules of Chindogu <ul><li>1.  “A Chindogu cannot be for real use” </li></ul><ul><ul><li>It must be an invention that is almost useless. If it turns out to be practical and that one can use it on a daily basis, it is not regarded as a Chindogu. </li></ul></ul><ul><li>2.  “A Chindogu must exist” </li></ul><ul><ul><li>It must be something that you can make and use. It cannot be just a mere idea or concept. </li></ul></ul><ul><li>3.  “Inherent in every Chindogu is the spirit of anarchy” </li></ul><ul><ul><li>They can be seen as a form of philosophy. The idea behind them is to challenge the “suffocating historical dominance of conservative utility” by producing something that is almost completely useless. </li></ul></ul><ul><li>4.  “Chindogu are tools for everyday life” </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Since there is a certain critical philosophy behind them and thus are a “form of nonverbal communication” they must be understandable to everyone. If it turns out that the philosophical idea behind the object is only understood by specialists, the invention cannot be called Chindogu. </li></ul></ul><ul><li>5.  “Chindogu are not for sale” </li></ul><ul><ul><li>They are not allowed to be sold to anyone, not even as a joke, otherwise the purity of the intent is forfeit. </li></ul></ul>© Francisco Ruiz, 2011
  9. 9. The 10 rules of Chindogu <ul><li>6.  “Humor must not be the sole reason for creating Chindogu” </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Although they might seem funny or silly to people who look at them, they should not be produced for humorous reasons; they should be created to solve a problem. </li></ul></ul><ul><li>7.  “Chindogu is not propaganda” </li></ul><ul><ul><li>They are invented to solve a potential problem and to be used, at least in theory. “They should not be created as a perverse or ironic comment on the sorry state of mankind.” </li></ul></ul><ul><li>8.  “Chindogu are never taboo” </li></ul><ul><ul><li>They are not allowed to cross the line. Their concepts may not contain any vulgarity, cruelty or “debase the sanctity of living things” . E.g. sex toy inventions are not allowed. </li></ul></ul><ul><li>9.  “Chindogu cannot be patented” </li></ul><ul><ul><li>They cannot be patented or copyrighted, since they are produced to share a certain idea which is there to be shared with everybody. </li></ul></ul><ul><li>10.  “Chindogu are without prejudice” </li></ul><ul><ul><li>They must not discriminate against anyone and should be able to be enjoyed by everyone, not matter what race, age, gender or ethnic group they come from. </li></ul></ul>© Francisco Ruiz, 2011
  10. 10. Chindogu vs. Patentable <ul><li>Patentable: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>New </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Not Obvious </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Useful </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Chindogu: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>New </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Not Obvious </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Not Useful (?) </li></ul></ul>© Francisco Ruiz, 2011
  11. 11. Exercise 1: Chindogu © Francisco Ruiz, 2011 Draw a not-useful idea for a personal item Time: 10 minutes
  12. 12. USPTO Chindogu <ul><li>Beerbrella </li></ul><ul><li>United States Patent 6637447 </li></ul><ul><li>Inventors: </li></ul><ul><li>Mcmullin, Mason Schott (St. Louis, MO) Bell, Robert Platt (Alexandria, VA) See, Mark Andrew (Alexandria, VA) </li></ul><ul><li>Application Number: </li></ul><ul><li>09/981966 </li></ul><ul><li>Publication Date: </li></ul><ul><li>10/28/2003 </li></ul><ul><li>Filing Date: </li></ul><ul><li>10/19/2001 </li></ul><ul><li>Primary Class: </li></ul><ul><li>135/16 </li></ul><ul><li>Other Classes: </li></ul><ul><li>206/217, 220/694 </li></ul>© Francisco Ruiz, 2011
  13. 13. More than 100 years <ul><li>Grave Alarm </li></ul><ul><li>US Pat. 500072 </li></ul><ul><li>Issued 1893 </li></ul><ul><li>Inventor: A. Lindquist </li></ul>© Francisco Ruiz, 2011
  14. 14. How many appliances to change a lightbulb? <ul><li>Light bulb changer </li></ul><ul><li>United States Patent 6826983 </li></ul><ul><li>Inventors: </li></ul><ul><li>Magdi, Thomas (Rockledge, FL) </li></ul><ul><li>Application Number: </li></ul><ul><li>10/361528 </li></ul><ul><li>Publication Date: </li></ul><ul><li>12/07/2004 </li></ul><ul><li>Filing Date: </li></ul><ul><li>02/10/2003 </li></ul><ul><li>Assignee: </li></ul><ul><li>Magdi (Rockledge, FL) </li></ul><ul><li>Primary Class: </li></ul><ul><li>81/53.11 </li></ul><ul><li>Other Classes: </li></ul><ul><li>81/52 </li></ul>© Francisco Ruiz, 2011
  15. 15. No comment © Francisco Ruiz, 2011 US Patent 3216423 Apparatus for Facilitating the Birth of a Child by Centrifugal Force Issued 1965 Inventors: G. B. Blonsky C. E. Blonsky
  16. 16. Exercise 2: not-Chindogu © Francisco Ruiz, 2011 Draw a more useful version of your Chindogu Time: 10 minutes
  17. 17. Why are we so hung up on usability? <ul><li>For: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Innovation requires a user </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Efficiency with time and resources </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Quality </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Design optimization </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Against: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Users often can’t formulate their needs </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Freedom and creativity </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Quantity </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Avoiding local maxima </li></ul></ul>© Francisco Ruiz, 2011
  18. 18. Local maxima © Francisco Ruiz, 2011
  19. 19. Invention as an Art <ul><li>The classical Arts: </li></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Painting </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Sculpture </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Music </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Dance </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Literature </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Theater </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><li>The modern Arts: </li></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Cinema (the 7th art) </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Video Games (adds interactivity) </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>Invention (utilizes any material) </li></ul></ul></ul>© Francisco Ruiz, 2011
  20. 20. Recap © Francisco Ruiz, 2011 What did we learn? How to use it in class?
  21. 21. Thanks! <ul><li>Want to help pass the word? </li></ul><ul><li>[email_address] </li></ul>© Francisco Ruiz, 2011

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