Today I was totally in my zone because we did a ton of brainstorming! Now that we know about all of the projects, today we started brainstorming ideas for our sea perch designs and our product pitch. However, the designs are top secret so I’m not going to reveal anything until things go public, but I will discuss the process.
It’s always kind of weird to brainstorm with a new group of people because everyone has slightly different methods that work best for them. Plus I feel like I do so much brainstorming with ID that I’ve gotten use to having a really some sort of plan and method to brainstorming typically with time limits, but the average person’s instinct is to just all kind of start thinking and talking with people. I discovered quickly that trying to be super organized wasn’t going to be how this team operated for now at least.
We ended up naturally splitting into two groups and deciding which group would work on the surface robot and which would work on the under water one. Then we brain stormed ideas with out groups by drawing on the chalkboard then expanding our groups a little. Then finally we talked to the other team about their design to give feedback and discussed how we would split up the limited materials we have. We went back and forth at this step a few times, but then my team finally felt confident to go a head and start working on building our design (which we had already confirmed with the other group on).
I must say that it bugged me some that we could get our materials until like 40 minutes in because it was hard to brainstorm ideas without being fully aware of what we had besides a list of objects without dimensions or descriptions. I also don’t know if our end design will really win in the innovative category because to me it seems rather simple, which you know may be okay if it ends up working the best. It made me wonder if we could have taken more time trying to think of innovative solutions rather than just starting with productive solutions. I wonder how what task you start with effects the end results.
Later in the night we were brainstorming product ideas (that could literally be any idea for a product). I’m use to starting with finding problems then getting sticky notes and brainstorming creative solutions. Here we were given free range to just think of any solution and I must say I found it harder to brainstorm good ideas while thinking this way. This time we were lead by our TA’s and had 45 minutes to come up with 100 ideas (which to be honest seemed long compared to some time limits I’ve been given, and yet we went over time to come up with a full 100). I also noticed we had a lot of ideas shut down which was odd. Most of the time they were shut down because the idea already existed, but I feel like that hasn’t stopped a brainstorm of mine in the past. It was just odd…
I mean I still had a lot of fun and we came up with some good ideas (but we don’t really decide until tomorrow), but it was just interesting to go through a familiar process a different way. I guess you just have to do whatever works best for the team, and today our team kicked butt during our Mission Impossible game and came in first place scoring the first 100 points for the engineering challenge this term!!! I think I love our team spirit and bond the most of anything because it makes being around each other really fun as well as productive because we listen to each other well.