For a child, there is no difference between what is true and what could be true. A world of dreams & imagination that encircles childhood gives in to the power of logic as we mature. ‘Mature’, really? History has shown us that our imagination can create reality; to visualise a brighter future, one needs to be imaginative. Optimistically. Also, maturing is about starting to understand & realise smaller things, like recognising the importance of imagination! So, why mature, why give up on imagination?
Ideas are fundamental to any invention. The imagination which sparks off with an idea or imagination that can stimulate an idea can indeed give wings to explore beyond the tangible and perceivable.
Leonardo da Vinci, the most celebrated artist of all times, a ‘creative genius’, a painting virtuoso, had a great understanding of aerodynamics. Back in 1500 AD. True to the adage, nature inspires everything, his design ideas & sketches for flying machine were based on the ‘bird flight’. His works inspired future scientists to develop prototypes of actual man-powered flights.
Fiction, as a genre of writing has established profound significance & popularity due to the way it opens up the minds to create things out of nowhere!
‘Twenty Thousand Leagues Under the Sea’, a fiction novel of the late 1800s was a highly acclaimed work, considered ahead of its times. The novel involved elements of underwater adventure like the usage of a vehicle like submarine which was still not completely developed or was then in the state of infancy! Scientist Simon lake, the creator of the modern-day submarine was mesmerised with the ‘idea’ of underwater travel & exploration after reading this classic.
The creators of the very first cell phone were inspired by an imaginary 'Communicator' that was used in the popular science fiction television series ‘Star Trek’. In another case, the same show inspired the creator of Apple - QuickTime, a multimedia program. The show had its characters listening to multiple music tracks on the computer, which was a one-off idea to have occurred to the creator during those times.
The scientist who built the first liquid-fueled rocket got his inspiration from a classic novel, ‘War of the worlds’. Science fiction author Robert Heinlein wrote about a remotely operated mechanical hand. Based on this ‘idea’, real-life manipulator arms were developed by the nuclear industry in the mid-1940s.
Talking about nature-inspired inventions, Japanese are the masters at it. High-speed trains could unusually increase the noise-pollution levels, and due to the excruciating decibels, could induce headaches. In the 1990s, Eiji Nakatsu, an engineer at the Japanese Rail Company, took inspiration from the kingfisher (bird) to find a solution to the problem! A closer look at the bird catching its prey, the engineer realised that it hardly created a ripple when it swooped into the water to catch its prey. The train’s frontal part was redesigned to look like kingfisher’s beak. The change in design not just solved the noise problem but also reduced power usage and enabled faster speeds!
Things which seem impossible in the real world, at times find answers in imagination. Dreams, perhaps have triggered so many different ideas, shows history.
Beatles, the best-selling & the most influential band in the history of rock music has trivia attached to the origin of their groundbreaking numbers. Paul McCartney, one of the members of the group, is known to have composed the music for the famous album ‘Yesterday’, in his dream! He has revealed that the tune occurred to him in his dream and he woke up with it thinking it to be a very familiar tune. The next one month, he apparently went all around the place checking if somebody had heard this tune, just to make sure it was absolutely original! The composition created an uproar in the world of music soon after its release and the rest is history!
Constantly thinking about an idea often finds an answer in the sub-conscious thinking
James Cameron, a renowned film director, is known to have passionately wanted to direct an action movie of the extra-terrestrial, something similar to what he had appreciated in the ‘outer limits’ episodes, as a kid. A night with severe fever worked out positively for him. He witnessed an explosion in his dream, and coming out of it was a robot, cut in half, armed with knives. Despite his fever, he sketched down the robot and built a draft around it to carve out ‘The Terminator’. Terminator turned out to become one of the most successful films of all times.
For Stephen King, an accident, post-accident condition precisely, gave him the plot to design his horror-thriller, ‘Dreamcatcher’.
“Ideas, so, are worthless until you get them out of your head to see what can be done with them." Ideas at any stage can take shape only with the usage of it. So, any idea small/big is worth it as long as you work on them to create bigger - better things. So, keep dreaming, keep imagining, keep ideating and creating newer things.
More ideas to you!!!