Be Curious, Please

October 17th, 2012 by Caroline Scheinfeld View Comments

What do you get when you combine modern technology with unlimited curiosity? The answer: Innovators with life altering innovations. The great Albert Einstein once said, “I have no special talents I am just…curious.” Without a doubt from this comment we can assume Einstein was a man of modesty because he sure had tremendous skill. On the other hand, perhaps curiosity is what separates the doers from the talkers. A few weeks ago, I attended the Feast Conference, where innovators/entrepreneurs/”potential game changers” gathered to question, share and discuss ways to make our world a better place. During the conference, a common thread was leveraging the accessibility and advancements brought upon by technology brings with the persistence and diligence of those willing to challenge today’s existing behaviors.

Innovators, life shakers and inventors must not only constantly question but must also strive and prepare for criticism. During the conference, general manager of Chaotic Moon Labs, Whurley, said, “If you don’t hear no a lot, your idea sucks.” While you should be prepared to face critics during the innovation process, be careful not to judge your own idea too harshly. According to Lead NASA Engineer Adam Stessler, “in the beginning if its truly stretching the state of the art it will look crazy. You can’t bear criticism in the beginning of the process.” While those looking into your projects should unleash their negative questioning, be careful not to do it to yourself!!!! Ideas can be crazy! The lesson here is challenging behavioral norms can often lead to success. When one steps outside the box and discovers new solutions to current problems, people will often judge harshly. Paradoxically, don’t be discouraged if your idea appears to be too simple, because sometimes the best inventions are just that. Ideas do not have to be complicated but they should be followed with critical questioning (by others)! As part of society, it’s our job to look to the future. LORE founder Joseph Cohen said, “the future belongs to the curious.” And “curiosity gives birth to boldness and gets us to try.” If you possess high hopes for the future then please apply your questioning to good use. With the advances in technology, there are tremendous opportunities in making today a better place for tomorrow. Adam Stessler quoted Intel CTO, Justin Rattner, “science and technology have progressed to the point where what we build is only constrained by the limits of our own imagination.”

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About Jay Levy

Jay Levy

Jay Levy is a co-founder and principal of Zelkova Ventures. Jay focuses most of his time in working with the current portfolio company and looking at new investments in the software-as-a-service, internet media and green tech space. More »

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