Tuesday, September 26, 2006

Pre-listing method

Listing information (facts, problems, goals etc) is an essential phase of any brainstorming/creative process and is widely documented. (see Mycoted Creative Problem Solving or CPS Model) The pre-listing approach adds an extra dimension to listing information and helps to suggest directions for the listing and also uncover hidden assumptions.

Pre-listing

If a creative (brainstormer, inventor etc) wanted to make a list of people, for example, they could represent this with a directive:

List people

And then ‘answer’ the directive by creating a list such as:

Tony Blair, George Bush, Nicole Kidman, Madonna, Nelson Mandela, Michael Schumacher etc

However, if they were to apply the pre-listing approach they would express the ‘list people’ directive as:

List X-people

The creative would then seek to find words to take the place of ‘X’. The chosen word will have a modifying role and will act as an adjective to modify/colour the ‘people’. So the new directive could appear thus, for example:

List dead-people, local-people, powerful-people, my-people, moronic-people, historic-people, male-people, mad-people, new-people, tribal-people, tory-people

The creative can then treat one of the directives as the answer. So, for example they could treat ‘local-people’ as a concept in itself. Alternatively they can use the directive/answer to prompt them to think of more specific cases. So with the directive/answer ‘local-people’ they could choose ‘my postman’ as a more specific answer.

Finding words for the ‘X’ modifier

The words I use as the modifier will come from two sources: the list of words produced by the pangram trigger and the list of words produced by directed free-association.

I’ve found that words of just two or three letters are initially the best words to use as the X modifier.

Assumptions
The pre-listing approach also helps to uncover assumptions. Notice how, with the directive

List people

A number of assumptions are automatically made in the listing of people. The creative may have assumed that the people must be alive, for example. However, with pre-listing, directives formed such as

List dead-people
List historic-people

the creative can (almost automatically) realise they were making the assumptions that the people listed must be alive and contemporary.

Subjects of pre-listing and their directives
At the start of the brainstorming the creative could choose the following (examples) as the subject of the pre-listing: information, facts, problems, expectations, goals, activitites

With the directives expressed thus:

List X-information
List X-facts
List X-problems
List X-expectations
List X-goals
List X-activities

So if the creative had chosen 'cinema' as the focus of creativity, the directive for List X-information could have led to the following directives/answers:

List new-information, old-information, dad-information, how-information, light-information, more-information, dull-information, deal-information, bill-information, wise-information, poor-information, today-information, to-information, cap-information, finish-information

From those examples, dad-information could lead to a consideration of the number of parents that attend the showings, so perhaps (among other possibilities) considerations about special deals for families could be considered. More-information could lead to considerations about consulting staff for feeback, ideas etc.

The concept level
If the brainstormer had chosen a supermarket as the subject of brainstorming/creativity and they wanted to list people they could express the directive as:

List X-people

The assumption that would be made here is that the listed people would be relevant to/associated with the supermarket. The creative can step to the concept level instead, so that instead of listing people associated with the supermarket they would list any people. The concept level is dictionary concept-level. So the creative would forget about the supermarket people (for the moment) and list people according to the dictionary concept of people. After that the creative could then go on to consider the supermarket-related people with a directive such as:

List X-supermarket people

Combining the X modifiers

Suppose the creative had been listing supermarket staff from the directive

List X-staff

This could have formed a list such as:

Ex-staff, happy-staff, young-staff, angry-staff, ambitious staff, absent-staff, old-staff, future staff, injured-staff, professional-staff, hungry-staff, pregnant-staff, noisy-staff

The creative can then combine the modifying words. Example

Ex-staff and angry-staff gives ex-angry-staff

The creative could then consider this as a concept in itself or again pre-list ‘ex-angry-staff’ with a new directive:

List X-ex-angry-staff

Or use ‘ex-angry-staff’ to think of a specific person.

Sunday, September 24, 2006

Unusual Businesses Ideas That Work

Just subscribed to this blog:

Unusual Businesses Ideas That Work

The blog lists existing businesses only, but here's a couple of rather wacky business ideas that spring to mind:

1) Sell the contents of the discarded vacuum cleaner bags from the vacuum cleaners used to clean Buckingham Palace. (I heard that house dust consists of ninety per cent dead skin -- so if you're buying the contents of the cleaner bags you're buying a piece of the Queen!)

2) (For the Tower Bridge souvenir shop): Make transparent plastic models of Tower Bridge and fill the models with genuine Thames water.

I'm sure I've got some more ideas for unusual businesses in 'ye olde files'. Must dig them out some time...

Sunday, September 17, 2006

Challenge: Can you invent a new sport?

From BrainReactions' Brainstorming tool:

Can you make up some new sports? (even if they are a bit silly)

I quite like this one:

Long distance races (such as 10000m) where the person in last place is eliminated every 500 metres. So, the resulting event tests both sprinting and stamina.

A website with ten seconds of every song

A website with ten seconds of every song

Most surely doable in some form on YouTube? Here's some ideas for video medleys that could be available:

A medley with ten seconds of every Beatles song (or any other group).
A medley with ten seconds of every song in the top 40 now.
A medley with ten seconds of every number one hit of the 60s (or other era).
A medley with ten seconds of every song from an album.

(Where no footage is available the screen would just show the name of the song.)

And a slightly different tangent:

A medley with ten seconds of all the music featuring in current TV commercials.
(The medley would also display the name of the track and the artist.)

Any ideas out there for other possibilities?

Sunday, September 10, 2006

Optician Project: Inserting actions into actions

FreeFoto.comI'm an optician and I'm about to do a project: I'll leave my premises to put advertising leaflets on the windscreens of local cars. I have hired a temp to help me distribute the leaflets. We have fifty leaflets each to distribute.

With this technique I select an action from the information pool and consider how a randomly chosen action could be inserted into that action.

Example

From the information pool I choose the action of: the leaflet distribution. I can make a guesstimate on the duration of this action:


Inserting an action

I can choose a random verb/action (see how to create a list of verbs) and consider how I would insert that action into the action of distributing leaflets. So, with the chosen action finding I consider how I can insert finding into the action of leaflet distribution:


So my creative challenge would read:

How can I insert finding into the action of the leaflet distribution?

Some possibilities:

1) During distribution, find new places that could distribute leaflets (shops etc)
2) Wait for a car owner to find their car and get feedback
3) Find a street with many cars parked
4) Go back later and find out if any leaflets are in the bin!
5) Find anyone I know and give them a leaflet

Variations

There are other variations to this approach: I can specify the duration of the inserted action before I choose a random action:


Or, I can make the inserted action longer than the main action:


Or, before I insert an action, I can name an action that occurs within the main action. In this example, an action that occurs within the leaflet distribution is: putting the leaflet on the car. Then I can insert an action into that action.



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Saturday, September 09, 2006

The Optician Project: The Grid Technique

FreeFoto.comI'm an optician and I'm about to do a project: I'll leave my premises to put advertising leaflets on the windscreens of local cars. I have hired a temp to help me distribute the leaflets. We have fifty leaflets each to distribute.


The grid technique is a simple technique for creating ideas for objects (and also for places and people). To use this technique I mentally superimpose a grid onto an object (or place or person) and create ideas for:

A specific square on the grid
Any square
or
All the squares

The creative directive


I set a creative directive in the format:

Create X square/area

and choose a random word for my X.

A leaflet from the Optician Project


Here's a leaflet from the leaflet distribution with a grid superimposed:


I want to create ideas for a specific square (but remain mindful of the option to create for any other square, or all squares). With the random word "exit", my directive reads:

Create exit square/area for the leaflet

At this point I want to create ideas quickly; they don't have to be great -- the important point is to guarantee newness. As discussed in the modified creating post I can either try to create an idea in five to ten seconds, or set a quota -- say, five ideas in a minute.

Exit square/area:

Idea 1) The leaflet has a square with details on how the customer can exit the shop
Idea 2) The leaflet has a square with details on how long an eye test takes: how long till the customers exits
Idea 3) The leaflet has a square that can "exit" the rest of the leaflet: it's detachable
Idea 4) One square says "This is the last part of the leaflet you should read"
Idea 5) One square says "We won't let you exit the shop until you are satisfied"

Developing an idea into a useful idea

I created an interesting idea from idea 1. I wanted to make exit the focus-word, so I restructured the sentence so that exit was the last word:

The leaflet has a square/area with details on how the shop's customers can exit

I decided to seek an alternative to exit (as discussed here) but immediately thought of an idea before I'd begun searching: the leaflet -- in addition to address details -- could provide other information to help customers find the shop:


Also, I can use the sentence:

The leaflet has a square/area with details on how the shop's customers can exit

to generate more ideas. I can list alternatives to exit:

The leaflet has a square/area with details on how the shop's customers can exit
__________ANDOR
pay, choose glasses, recycle or dispose of old glasses, switch from glasses to contact lenses, use contact lenses for a trial period, bring their children for testing, find the right product, contact us, park their car, book appointments,
etc.

More ideas

Create cut square/area.
Put key information on one part of the leaflet that can be cut out and kept.

Create Pluto square/area
Reclassify my job title. Instead of calling myself "optician" call myself "optical technician".

Create difference square/area.
Provide statistics on how long it takes an eye to become different -- how long it takes for a lenses prescription to become out of date. In fact, why not use the back of the leaflet to provide many unusual (but useful) facts about the human eye and the need for glasses and lenses?

Create decision square/area
Provide a means for the leaflet recipient to test their own sight to decide if they need glasses. Perhaps a link to a website that provides a simple preliminary test?

Create danger square/area
Use a section of the leaflet to explain that a sight test can discover health problems such as diabetes.


Tags:

Optician Project: Modified Creating

FreeFoto.comI'm an optician and I'm about to do a project: I'll leave my premises to put advertising leaflets on the windscreens of local cars. I have hired a temp to help me distribute the leaflets. We have fifty leaflets each to distribute.

If I consider any piece of information from the information pool (designing the leaflet, for example) I can set a creative directive such as:

Create an idea for the designing of the leaflet.

However, I can set a creative directive in the format:

Create X idea (for the designing of the leaflet)

and choose a random word for the X, to modify the creating.

Creating an idea

In answering the modified creative directive I like to create an idea as quickly as I can. I can imagine that I have been set a deadline to create an idea (any idea) in ten seconds. The important point is to guarantee newness. I can also set a quota: say, five ideas in a minute.

An example

Focusing on designing the leaflet I create my modified creative directive with the random word "accident":

Create an accident idea (for the designing of the leaflet)

So applying a quota (five ideas in a minute) here are the ideas:

1) We rely on chance to create the leaflet: we pick a leaflet at random and make an identical design to that leaflet
2) We make the leaflet blood red
3) We include statistics on the leaflet about road accidents caused by defective vision
4) We deliberately include spelling errors on the leaflet
5) We list mistakes that can be made during a design project (for future reference)

More examples

Subject (from information pool) = The front counter (of the shop)

Random word = prison

Directive = Create a prison idea for the front desk

(A slight tangent from considering the leaflet distribution project.)

Ideas:

1) All the information about customers is retained at the front desk
2) There is always someone at the front desk, 24/7 (person "imprisoned" at desk)
3) There are always leaflets kept at the front desk
4) We cater for unusual customers (prisoners etc.)
5) We publish a mission statement like "We don't let customers go until they are satisfied with our service and our products"

Example two:

Subject = Briefing the temp on my requirements

Random word = armageddon

Directive = Create an armageddon idea for the briefing of the temp

Ideas:

1) I set a deadline for the completion of the task
2) We make a list of things that could go wrong (or a worst case scenario)
3) We decide to make this the last time we will do the project
4) We destroy the leaflets and publicize the business another way
5) I offer an incentive -- such as a trip to the cinema

Example three:

Subject = Reflecting on the project at the end of the day

Random word = Individual

Directive = Create an individual idea for the reflections on the distribution

Ideas:

1) I ask the temp to write feedback alone
2) I ask the temp if any individual received a leaflet and seemed positive
3) I ask the temp to keep one leaflet on display in his own car
4) I ask the temp if he knows any individual who can promote the business in future
5) We decide that the first individual who arrives (as a result of the leafleting) will receive freebies

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Optician Project: Increasing and decreasing the degree of a characteristic

FreeFoto.comI'm an optician and I'm about to do a project: I'll leave my premises to put advertising leaflets on the windscreens of local cars. I have hired a temp to help me distribute the leaflets. We have fifty leaflets each to distribute.

This approach can be used to create goals or "What if?" thought experiments. There are five stages to this approach:

1) Choose a piece of information from the information pool.
2) Ask: How X is it?
3) Generate a characteristic for the X
4) Consider an increase or decrease of the degree of the characteristic
5) Use the increase or decrease to either create a goal or formulate a "What if?" thought experiment

1) Choose a piece of information from the information pool

I can choose any piece of information from the information pool -- whether it be a noun, activity, object etc. For this example I'll choose: the leaflet

2) Ask: How X is it?

The X will be a characteristic -- the word(s) chosen will either be an adjective or will function as an adjective.

3) Generate a characteristic for the X

I can generate a list of adjectives as described in the Listing adjectives and adjectival phrases

For my characteristic I will use the word blatant (from the Listing adjectives and adjectival phrases post). So this generates the question:

How blatant is the leaflet?

4) Consider an increase or decrease of the degree of the characteristic

At this stage I can either slightly increase/decrease the degree of the characteristic, or dramatically increase/decrease the degree to outrageous proportions. For a slight change of degree I can consider how blatant the leaflet is. I can imagine that the leaflet is made slightly less blatant -- thus it would attract less attention. Or, I can imagine it is more blatant -- more likely to catch the eye. Taking the degree change to ridiculous proportions I can imagine that the leaflet is so blatant that everyone passing by the leaflet can't help but stop to look, or I can imagine that I decrease the blatantness so much that not even the recipient of the leaflet notices it.

5) Use the degree change to create goals or "What if?" thought experiments

While increasing or decreasing the degree at point 4, I can be mindful of the option to either create goals or "What if?" thought experiments.

So at the point I was considering increasing the blatantness of the leaflet I can set a challenge in the format:

How can I make the leaflet more blatant (eye-catching)?

Where I increased the blatantness to ridiculous proportions I can create a "What if?" question in the form:

What if the leaflet was so blatant that passers-by stopped to look and felt compelled to read?

Another example

Info = the leaflet
Characteristic = inspecting
How can I make the leaflet more inspecting?

Increasing the degree of the inspecting to create a goal, this leads to the idea that the leaflet could in some way inspect the recipient's eyes. How about putting the leaflet some distance away from the windscreen so that the driver is tested in some way? Or putting the leaflet on the back window in reverse-type so that it is read when the driver looks in the mirror?

Do your eyes need testing? If you can't read this they do!

See also: "What if?" questions

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Sunday, September 03, 2006

The Optician Project: Creating straight alternatives for the focus-word

FreeFoto.comI'm an optician and I'm about to do a project: I'll leave my premises to put advertising leaflets on the windscreens of local cars. I have hired a temp to help me distribute the leaflets. We have fifty leaflets each to distribute.

In the Creative ANDOR post I used the following layout to show my intention to create alternatives:

The opticians is advertised by the leaflets ANDOR(operations)
________________________ANDOR
______________________(alternatives)

In this post I will be looking at the four approaches that can be used to create straight alternatives to the focus-word (leaflets). These approaches are: Random word, Information from information pool, New information, and Free/unguided choice. The information shown with all four alternative approaches looks thus:

The opticians is advertised by the leaflets
________________________ANDOR
(Random word) (Information from information pool) (New information) (Free/unguided choice)

Random Word

With this approach I use Edward de Bono' s random word technique (see: sources of random words). The random word "valentines" added to my idea format looks thus:

The optician is advertised by the leaflets
_______________________ANDOR
______________________valentines

I can generate several ideas from this:

Make thematic cards (with advertising) for special times of the year.
Have a theme at the premises.
Put advertising leaflets in the cards (or newspapers) on sale at local newsagents.

Information from information pool

With this approach I randomly choose some information from the information pool. For example, Finding the right product for each customer added to my idea format looks thus:

The optician is advertised by the leaflets
_______________________ANDOR
___________Finding the right product for each customer

Which suggests the possibilities:

I (as optician) find a novel way to find the right product for each customer.
The leaflets show my USP: I can quickly and efficiently find the right style of glasses for the customer

The information (also from the information pool): my diary in the idea format would look thus:

The optician is advertised by the leaflets
_______________________ANDOR
_______________________My diary

Which could suggest:

I blog about the project (to advertise my business) and use the blog to publicize my business.
I provide diaries for customers (with my business name emblazoned on the front).

New information

With this approach I focus on the information the leaflets and apply one of the information-listing methods:

Quota listing
Listing key information with category-triggers
Inger profiling
Using random words to list information

in order to to list some new information that pertains to the leaflets. I can remain mindful of my challenge -- to create a means to advertise the business -- while I do this.

For example, if I use Using random words to list information and my random word is "complexity" then my focus will be on the complexity of the leaflet. My idea format looks thus:

The optician is advertised by the leaflets
_______________________ANDOR
___________________the leaflet's complexity

which could suggest that the leaflets are made with an unusual design that attracts attention.

Free/unguided choice

This is the easiest approach of all. I merely write my idea format:

The optician is advertised by the leaflets
_______________________ANDOR
__________________________?

and see if the consideration of alternatives alone is enough to trigger an idea.



Tags:

The Optician Project: Carrying out operations on the focus-word

FreeFoto.comI'm an optician and I'm about to do a project: I'll leave my premises to put advertising leaflets on the windscreens of local cars. I have hired a temp to help me distribute the leaflets. We have fifty leaflets each to distribute.

In the previous post I used the following layout to show my intention to create alternatives:

The opticians is advertised by the leaflets ANDOR (operations)
________________________ANDOR
______________________(alternatives)

In this post I will be looking at the three operations that can be carried out on the focus-word (leaflets). These three operations are: upping the concept level, naming, and modified naming.

Upping the concept level

The three techniques for stepping up the concept level are explained in the post Selecting information and stepping up the concept level. The three techniques there are:

1) Stepping up to dictionary level
2) Stepping up to category-triggers
3) Stepping up to the level created by hindsight-questions

Naming and Modified Naming

The naming and modified naming techniques are explained in the Naming and Modified Naming post.

An example of the operations in use

My information shown with all the five operations available to me looks as follows:

The opticians is advertised by the leaflets ANDOR: (Step up to dictionary level) (Step up to category-triggers) (Hindsight-question level) (Naming) (Modified naming)

I can now consider my focus-word -- leaflets -- and apply an operation. For this example I choose to step up the concept level with a hindsight-question. To give the answer "leaflets" my hindsight-question could be "Name a paper advertisement". Thus my new concept level is: paper advertisement. I can add this as my first alternative to leaflets. This is the first idea:

The opticians is advertised by the leaflets ANDOR paper advertisement(s)

A sequence of operations

I can use a sequence of operations. For example, with my information:

The opticians is advertised by the leaflets ANDOR a paper advertisement(s)

I can now carry out an operation on paper advertisement(s). Using the naming operation I set a directive:

Name a paper advertisement

Possible answers:

Yellow Pages
Newspaper advertisements
A billboard
A business card

I can then select any (or all) of these answers to complete my information and thus create ideas:

The opticians is advertised by the leaflets ANDOR paper advertisement(s) ANDOR newspaper advertisements

At this point I can continue to apply operations to newspaper advertisements or apply operations to the information listed previously: leaflets or paper advertisements.


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The Optician Project. Creative Phase: The creative ANDOR

FreeFoto.comI'm an optician and I'm about to do a project: I'll leave my premises to put advertising leaflets on the windscreens of local cars. I have hired a temp to help me distribute the leaflets. We have fifty leaflets each to distribute.

The first step I take when using the creative-ANDOR is to write some information; I can find my information by randomly picking an item from the information pool. For this example I choose:

The leaflets advertise the opticians

In this sentence, opticians is the focus-word -- that is, if I am looking to create ideas my search for ideas will be based on that word.

Changing the focus-word by restructuring the sentence

I can opt to make any word in the sentence the focus-word. I do this by simply choosing a word and rearranging the sentence to make that word the last word of the sentence. So with:

The leaflets advertise the opticians

I want to make leaflets the focus-word, so I rearrange the sentence to give:

The opticians is advertised by the leaflets

The creative ANDOR

With leaflets my new focus-word, I want to make changes with a view to creating new ideas. There are two main changes I can make: I can either select straight alternatives to the leaflets, or create alternatives by carrying out some operations on the leaflets. I show my intention to do this by adding two ANDORs to the sentence:

The opticians is advertised by the leaflets ANDOR
________________________ANDOR

To the right of the ANDOR next to leaflets I will be carrying out operations on the leaflets. Beneath the ANDOR under leaflets I will be listing alternatives to the leaflets:

The opticians is advertised by the leaflets ANDOR (operations)
________________________ANDOR
______________________(alternatives)

Carrying out operations on the focus-word
Creating straight alternatives for the focus-word


See also: Serious Creativity: Using the Power of Lateral Thinking to Create New Ideas by Edward de Bono. (Chapter : Alternatives)

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The Optician Project: The Creative Phase

My posts to date of the Optician Project have focused on one activity alone: the listing of information. My posts henceforth will discuss the creative phase: the idea generation, brainstorming etc.

The techniques listed so far I would consider to be my core techniques for the listing of information:

Starting out (with a handle on the situation)

Listing key information with category-triggers

Switching the focus

Inger profiling for the listing of information

Using random words to list information

Listing information with hindsight-focus

Selecting information and stepping up the concept level

Listing information with action-units

Naming and Modified Naming

and of course, a quota-listing mentality can be applied at any stage of listing.

However, I am currently considering more techniques that can be used for listing information. These are at the thought-experiment stage, but I will outline the details on my shadow blog:

Listing multiple starts (link to come)
Listing "utterances" (link to come)
Watered-down challenges (link to come)

and then add these techniques to this blog if I find that they serve as useful information-listing tools.

There are other information-listing techniques on this blog that are worth a look and that I may also add at a later date:

Finding key facts with the suffix and stem methods

Possession-string for listing information

Ing-est for listing information

Using adverbs to list information


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Optician Project: Naming and Modified Naming

FreeFoto.comI'm an optician and I'm about to do a project: I'll leave my premises to put advertising leaflets on the windscreens of local cars. I have hired a temp to help me distribute the leaflets. We have fifty leaflets each to distribute.

Introduction

With the naming and modified naming techniques I choose some information (from the information pool) and name many different examples of that thing (person, activity, object etc).

Naming Technique

The naming technique is simple. I choose some information from the information pool -- say, optician (the person) -- and create a naming directive:

Name an optician

Then I name as many different opticians as I choose:

Opticians in this town. London opticians. Trainee opticians. Retired opticians. Good opticians. Reputable opticians. etc.

Modified Naming Technique

With modified naming again I choose some information, but this time I set a naming directive:

Name X optician(s)

where X will be replaced by a word (or phrase etc) with a modifying function. For example:

Name a new optician(s)

This could suggest: opticians looking for premises for a business. Opticians that have just qualified. Opticians that have just opened a new shop. Opticians that use the latest technology. etc.

One syllable words as modifiers

At the start of the naming exercise I create a number of one syllable words. To do this I randomly choose a letter (or two letters) and create one syllable words using the letters as triggers. For example:

Be = beast, beat, best, bell, bear, bed etc.

Then I use any (or all) of these words as a modifier in my naming directive, thus:

Name best optician(s)

This could suggest: the best optician(s), highly rated opticians, opticians who were most successful in their studies, opticians who are successful with customers, opticians who show the highest profits. etc.

Using random words

I can use Edwards de Bono's random word technique to provide a word to be my modifier. For example: expectation completes the naming directive:

Name an expectation optician

Which could suggest: opticians who expect an increase in customers, opticians awaiting a delivery of stock, someone who is training to be (and expects to be) an optician etc.

Forming new concepts

Sometimes the information in the naming directive is worth using as a new concept in itself. For example, if my modifier is old my naming directive reads:

Name an old optician(s)

I can decide that "old optician" is worth forming into a concept: old-optician(s). This new concept can be used itself in a naming directive. With the modifier done my naming directive reads:

Name done old-opticians

Which could suggest: old opticians who are tired and ready to retire. Opticians who have retired. Old opticians who have introduced new innovations etc.

See also: Five sources of random words


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Saturday, September 02, 2006

The Optician Project: The Information Pool

Here's the information pool showing information listed regarding the Optician Project. I must stress that this information is only the information generated within each of the previous posts; ideally I would like to carry out an extensive (and potentially exhaustive) listing of information (something I will do when time is being kinder).

Optician Project: information pool

The category-triggers:

Time(s) Duration(s) Place(s) Project(s) People(s) Thing(s) Object(s) Activity(ies)

From Quota listing:

Me (as optician). Receptionist. My wife. The temp. Most regular customer. The manager of the restaurant next door. The future boss of this opticians. The editor of the local newspaper. Tony Blair. My first ever customer. Location: 22 New Cambridge Road. East end of the street. Next to barber's shop. South England. My home. My car. The map/sign at the end of the street. The local newsagents. The local park. My advertisement in Yellow Pages. The homes of my regular customers. The pair of glasses that Mr Rogers bought five months ago. The local swimming baths.

From Starting out:

The project. Putting leaflets on cars. This afternoon. Promoting awareness of my business. Bringing in more customers.

From Listing key information:

Briefing the temp on my requirements. Leaving the shop. Putting the first leaflet on the first car. The end of the project. The first customer comes in with a leaflet. The afternoon of the leaflet distribution. Today. Ten seconds (the time to put a leaflet on a car). Five minutes (the time it takes me to explain my requirements to the temp). Six weeks (the time over which I expect new customers to arrive with leaflets). The optician's premises. The street with cars. The location of the first car to receive a leaflet. The location of the last car. The delivery area allocated to the temp. Designing the leaflet. Printing the leaflet. Putting the leaflet on one car. Greeting and helping the customers that result from the leaflet distribution. Our returning to the premises after the leaflet distribution. Any individual that receives a leaflet. The first impression a leaflet gives. The way a leaflet is left on a car. The "feelgood factor" that will occur when the distribution is complete. The receptionist's thoughts on the project. The leaflet's colour. The first leaflet. The windscreen wipers under which the leaflets will be placed. Any car that receives a leaflet. The hand that puts a leaflet on a car. Choosing a car to receive a leaflet. Allocating fifty leaflets to the temp. Reflecting on the project at the end of the day. Putting a leaflet under a windscreen wiper. Ending the distribution when we run out of leaflets.

From Switching the Focus:

Opening time. First customer of day arrives. New stock arrives. Closing time. Anniversary of first opening. The Christmas period. The half hour it takes for an eye test. Weekends. The business year. Purchase made. The front counter. The display area (for glasses). The front window. The eye-test room. The forecourt. Arranging the displays. General maintenance. Utilizing latest technology. Finding the right product for each customer. All customers. Rival opticians. Dissatisfied customers. Ambience of premises. Winter/summer temperature. The risk of vandalism/shoplifting. Demand. Size of premises. Any glasses on display. Contact lenses. The telephone. Eye-test equipment. Furniture. Receiving a phone call. Cleaning. Maintaining records. Greeting customers. Arranging stock layout.

From Inger profiling:

Customers who get a good deal. Lack of customers coming to shop. Reading about an optician who did a similar project. The local car park won't let us put leaflets on the cars there. My diary. The printers -- who printed the leaflets. My home -- where I wrote the first draft of the leaflet. My desk -- where I store the leaflets ready for distribution. The printing of leaflets. The first draft. The storage of leaflets. Preparing for distribution. My PC -- where I designed and amended the text. The printer's PC -- used for cosmetic amendments to the leaflets. A local business proprietor could be influenced to do a similar project. A youngster passing a leafleted car could steal the leaflet. Our leaving the premises with a handful of leaflets. The printer reviewing his accounts sees a record of my investment in his services.

From random word information:

The movement that a leaflet makes when a car owner moves a leaflet from under their windscreen wiper. The distribution area that produces the most customers. The individual who distributes the most leaflets in the shortest amount of time. Some of the leaflets will still be on the cars at night. I'll be reflecting on the project tonight. Any lady whose car receives a leaflet. Success = when a leaflet produces a customer. Success = when the leaflet distribution is completed. Cars outside the cinema will be leafleted by us. The number of leaflets distributed by us gradually increases. The second car to receive a leaflet. The temp is second in command. This is a pioneering project for this opticians.

From Listing information with hindsight-focus:

I scribbled my first draft on a piece of paper. I'll be paying the temp with cash. I'm keeping a record of the number of customers generated by the distribution. The job advert that made the temp apply for the job. The advert for the printer in Yellow Pages. Leaflet recipient's reading of a leaflet. Recipients becoming customers. The distribution route. The leaflet's layout on my PC. Potential customers. 100 distributions. 100 placings of the leaflets onto cars. The print run. The original draft. The cars' owners. Passers-by. The wording on the leaflets. Who to employ to help me distribute leaflets. Where to distribute the leaflets. The number of leaflets to distribute. The plastic bags we are carrying to cover the leaflets (in case of rain). The back of the leaflets. My rivals. Our presence is seen in the high street. The copy of the leaflet I display at my premises in the window. The printer and the printer's staff will see the leaflet. The presence of something on cars will no doubt make some motorists think they have a parking ticket. Our approaching cars and putting leaflets under the windscreen wipers. Our absence at the optician's premises will no doubt be noticed by some (existing) customers.

From Stepping up the concept level:

Leaflet (dictionary level concept). Leaflet = A printed sheet of paper with information, to be distributed for advertising purposes. Leaflet distribution (at dictionary level concept). Things that took hours to prepare. Paper advertisements. Something that people read that tells them about a business.

From Action-unit listing:

Optician distributes leaflets. Optician designs leaflets. Optician prints leaflets. Optician carries leaflets. Optician amends leaflets. Optician alters leaflets. Optician benefits from leaflets. Optician believes in leaflets. Optician creates leaflets. Optician carries leaflets. Optician distributes leaflets. Optician designs leaflets. Optician edits leaflets. Optician favours leaflets. Optician gathers leaflets. Optician handles leaflets. Optician holds leaflets. Optician initiates leaflets. Optician inspects leaflets. Optician joins leaflets (together). Optician keeps leaflets. Optician likes leaflets. Optician makes leaflets. Optician manages leaflets. Optician needs leaflets. Optician notes leaflets. Optician orders leaflets. Optician proof-reads leaflets. Optician quantifies leaflets. Optician reads leaflets. Optician relishes leaflets. Optician shares leaflets. Optician transports leaflets. Optician understands leaflets. Optician values leaflets. Optician waits for leaflets. Optician walks with leaflets. Optician copies leaflets. Optician yields leaflets. Optician zones leaflets. Optician sings praises of leaflets. Optician deletes drafts of leaflets. Optician shows final draft to receptionist. Leaflets advertise optician. Leaflets bolster optician. Leaflets champion optician. Leaflets further optician. Leaflets grab (interest) of optician. Temp gathers leaflets. Car owners gather leaflets. Printer gathers leaflets. Receptionist gathers leaflets. Car owner's family gathers leaflets. Car owner's friends gather leaflets. Passers-by gather leaflets.

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