Where Good Ideas Come From - Review


Where Good Ideas Come From Steven Johnson takes a critical look at the history of innovation in his book, "Where Good Ideas Come From." The subtitle describes his approach toward the natural history of innovation and sets up his analysis of thinking. The goal of his work is to identify trends in historical breakthroughs in science, and technology. By comparing and contrasting different types of open, closed, and commercial enterprises Johnson keys in on several qualities of a good idea.

Johnson bridges the gap between anecdotal and historical in this book. The opening examples are too perfect to be convincing until later in the text. Johnson broadens his approach and comes up with some insightful ideas behind... ideas. His final argument is for collaborative environments where thinkers can compound their good ideas in concert with one another.

...bridges the gap between anecdotal and historical...

I would recommend reading this book. The strong parts are in the middle with a tepid opening and distracting conclusion laced with vacuous thoughts concerning social structures. There is a strong central idea here and it is worth grasping for when trying to take purchase of your own good ideas.


Brent ColbyComment