Posted on August 7, 2011 by Albert Tung
Young Scientist Challenge Week 5
Choosing one problem and solution took a great deal of time and energy. The solution had to be practical, available to the public and innovative. It took a while for me to realize that there are two main solutions in the world. One solution is simple, addresses the problem and effectively fixes it. The other solution is high-tech and new. In some cases, people like simple solutions because they are more readily available and cause less problems. In other cases, people like fancy solutions because they are new and appeal to curiosity, much like smartphones.
I decided to risk it and chose a high-tech solution but that doesn't necessarily mean that it's full of extraneous material and unnecessary garbage. I drew upon the experiences of innovators throughout history who had stepped forth with a bold idea. Some ideas flunked, others succeeded.
My 3M mentor has kept me thinking about what I need to keep in mind as I develop my solution. He reminded me that it's easy to get carried away and that addressing the problems of the solution, which is rather ironic, is essential to creating an effective innovation. I remain excited as I am researching the possibilities and starting to sketch more realistic ideas.
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