Where Good Ideas Come From

Monday, October 18, 2010

Steven Johnson looks into what sparks brilliant ideas and how innovation happens. In Where Good Ideas Come From, he tells the exciting and encouraging story of how we generate the ideas that push our careers, our lives, our society, and our culture forward.


Steven Johnson

Comments [11]


One of the smallest particles of our physical world has a double name because it was posited & searched for by two different groups of physicists simultaneously. One group called it J, the other called it Psi. Neither group was willing to concede in the naming, and hence the particle is called the J/Psi particle. Not a technology, but still humorous.

Oct. 18 2010 01:32 PM
JOE from New York

Hi Leonard,

Very intersting subject, I'd like to hear this guy again.

Also is it possible to get a 2 hour show on Jacque Fresco ideas.


Oct. 18 2010 12:42 PM
Mike C. from Tribeca

A most interesting segment. Please have this guest on again, Leonard.

Oct. 18 2010 12:41 PM
jgarbuz from Queens

Next stop, "Brave New World" as prophesied by Aldous Huxley in the late 1930s. Children produced in test tubes, and variegated by IQ for different occupational castes. Abolition of marriage and that quaint cottage industry "family system" of producing and rearing children, replaced by well managed corporate demographic controls. Legal soma drugs for everyone. We're getting there.

Oct. 18 2010 12:39 PM
greg blonder

There are actually THREE different kinds of technology diffusion. Where there is an existing distribution network (e.g. the web or electricity) then new ideas can emerge in a year or two. When the idea requires new principles converted to practical manufacture, it takes 15-20 years. And if the network itself has to be built (say the the highway system) closer to 50 years. Entrepreneurs who ignore the lessons of technology diffusion rates, are often too early and thus doomed to fail.

Oct. 18 2010 12:37 PM
joe from NYC

What does your guest think about Jacque Fresco's ideas ?

Oct. 18 2010 12:35 PM
John from Bushwick

This is a great topic for people looking to transform how business operates. Business leaders should open the dialogue among all employees to share ideas much like Google does. Check out the link to Steven Johnson's video on TED talks-

Oct. 18 2010 12:34 PM
Sainted_Mother from Harlem, NY

YES, DIVERSITY in large areas. EXACTLY the reverse of "if you can make it here, you'll make it anywhere" ... NICHE markets can survive in areas of large people concentrations.

Oct. 18 2010 12:29 PM


Oct. 18 2010 12:23 PM
Amy from Manhattan

I agree that great minds (like Newton & Leibniz on calculus) thinking alike depend on the existing background. Sometimes it seems as if the next step is waiting to be taken, & more than 1 person is working on that next step, like Volta & Galvani on the role of electicity in biology.

Oct. 18 2010 12:19 PM
Dr. Liz from East Village

I work for a certain local university, and believe me, sometimes it feels like an echo chamber: fashionable ideas are repeated ad nauseum and contradictory views are shouted down. If you want tenure, you have to play the game.

Oct. 18 2010 12:19 PM

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