After all, inventions are often new ways of combining old bits and pieces.
|Faceted||Metal||Attached Cap||No Cartridge|
|Sculptured||Paper||Cleaning Cap||Cartridge Made of Ink|
Invention: A Cube Pen; once corner writes, leaving six faces for ads, calendars, photos, etc.
An excellent way of implementing this method is with a computer program to enumerate the combinations and prompt the user with random combinations. Often the combinations are useful idea prompters and stepping stones to other solutions. I have such a program written in Hypercard, but the technique is not difficult.
Of additional value is to have a collection of attribute lists for plugging into your morphological analysis. Here are some of mine:
|Human Ages||Baby, Toddler, Pre-Schooler, Child, Adolescent, Adult, Retired|
|Time Units||Milli-seconds, Seconds, Minutes, Hours, Morning/Afternoon/Evening, Days, Weeks, Fortnight, Month, Quarters, Years, Decades, Century|
|Colours||Red, Orange, Yellow, Green, Blue, Indigo, Violet, Black, White, Brown, Pink, Crimson|
|Meals||Breakfast, Snack, Lunch, Dinner, Supper, Snack|
|Six Questions||Who, What, When, Where, How, Why|
Think of the very popular books produced by Rick Smolan (photographer) which included A Day in the Life of Australia and his more recent A Day in the Life of Cyberspace. My using morphological analysis, you could replace A Day with the list of time units, Life could be replaced with Birth/Death/Growth/Decay and the last word could be replaced with a list of your areas of interest, eg My Family, My Country, My Dog.
As you evaluate the combinations, you will encounter such combinations as: "A Year in the Death of my employer" which could prompt you to examine the decline of your employer following your retrenchment. (I speak from experience!).
Send your comments to Charles Cave