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"well, my idea is to stick metal bars in water and...

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"well, my idea is to stick metal bars in water and...

Maggie Peng

Visitor

Maggie Peng

A while back I was a lab monkey doing a product development project for an interesting green tech company. I had a hypothesis and needed to make an industrial appliance out of it. During the process of bringing this invention to life, I shocked myself with direct current, burned many wires, destroyed many lab equipments, forced to cut my hair at work (cuz I got industrial glue on it) and wasted tons of time doing experiments that led to nowhere.

And if you are still reading thus far, sorry to disappoint you, this is not a success story :) I didn't come back from causing all the havoc into achieving my ingenious invention. But I do have a point...somewhere...okay, it's at the end.

I was a busy bee everyday talking to all the brilliant inventors, industry experts and academia (I even called my professor for help while I was at work) about my ambitious invention which actually sounded like a nut case's plan to take over the world. At the same time, the problem I needed to conquer escalated so I had to come up with a temporary fix fast! I JUST wanted to find the most primitive, simplest, quickest way to solve that problem at that moment so I could go back to my crazy elaborate design and experiments.

Turns out, my "temporary fix" became the basis of a provisional and soon to be non-provisional US patent that saves huge amount of water for big building structures such as hospitals. And this new product, due to its extreme simplicity, is very sustainability itself. I didn't even bother using electricity, relays, crazy metal alloys, etc like what I envisioned for my original design, which is gone with the wind.

I guess my point is, well, Sustainability, Youth and Innovation! I think innovation is one's desire to improve, guts to venture into the zone of "wacky-ness", and most important of all, the instinct to problem-solve the simplest way possible. You'd be surprised that sometimes the simplest solution is actually the most sustainable too. :)



edited 1 time

12th February, 2010 @ 5:26 PM CEST

Alja Sulčič

Visitor

Alja Sulčič

I love this story Maggie, thanks for sharing with us! And yeah, I guess the lesson here is to keep trying, test all kinds of crazy ideas, because you never know where the next big invention is hidden.

12th February, 2010 @ 8:14 PM CEST

Saad Khan

Apprentice

Saad Khan | Action team

haha ie you were crazy.. and on a serious note i agree we have complicated ourselves so much that in pursuit of something new we neglect the fact the even simple stuff can be helpful :)

14th February, 2010 @ 7:00 PM CEST

Maggie Peng

Visitor

Maggie Peng

Agreed.
Being a lab monkey is pretty crazy but it's good fun :)

15th February, 2010 @ 9:42 AM CEST

Batric Krvavac

Visitor

Batric Krvavac

At the start of the story i tought that you became a super hero or some supero powerful mutant :P...
As i've written in my quch challenge advice, pay attenntion to small things.
A quotation from Hagakure - 'Matters of' great concern should be treated lightly...Matters of small concern should be treated seriously."

25th March, 2010 @ 10:29 AM CEST

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