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The Riddle: Where Ideas Come From and How to Have Better Ones Hardcover – Jan 28 2008

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 256 pages
  • Publisher: Jossey-Bass; 1 edition (Jan. 28 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0787996327
  • ISBN-13: 978-0787996321
  • Product Dimensions: 16.3 x 2.4 x 23.6 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 363 g
  • Average Customer Review: Be the first to review this item
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #2,542,644 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Product Description

From Publishers Weekly

Razeghi's self-help text is designed to assist the everyday genius in finding those ah-ha ideas like those Albert Einstein and Thomas Edison came across in the past. Razeghi presents his thoughts in a straightforward, user-friendly manner, which leaves little room for interpretation for narrator Jim Bond. Though his voice is deep and affirming, it becomes monotonous, and listeners may find themselves tuning out halfway through this seven-disc set. Bond sounds like he's simply going through the motions in an uninspired and dreary narration. While the target audience may find some of Razeghi's tips useful, there is little effort made to keep them interested for the duration.
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. --This text refers to the Audio CD edition.


Voted a Smart Book for 2008 by Fast Company

"Razeghi's self-help text is designed to assist the everyday genius in finding those 'ah-ha' ideas like those Albert Einstein and Thomas Edison came across in the past. Razeghi presents his thoughts in a straightforward, user-friendly manner." --Publishers Weekly, February 25, 2008

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Front Cover | Copyright | Table of Contents | Excerpt | Index | Back Cover
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) HASH(0xa4d11fcc) out of 5 stars 12 reviews
21 of 23 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0xa4ba4ef4) out of 5 stars The Answer to the Riddle? Starts strong -- finishes weak Feb. 5 2008
By M. Webb - Published on
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
The first part of the book is a decent read. The author is interesting and convincing enough in the first four chapters, (The Innovation Intent, The Gods Must Be Crazy, the Eureka Moment, It Came to Me in a Dream). However, much of the support for the author's positions are not well defended, but are still thought provoking in those first few chapters. The most over-used analogy in the book is the Archimedes myth/story "Eureka" moment appears just about everywhere from Chapter three on and does get tiring to the reader. Chapter one and two set the stage quite well. The most interesting content comes in Chapter three and four and are worth your time. Chapter five, (In The Mood for Innovation) falls off the edge of the world by going into creativity measurements focused primarily on Schumann who had been clinically diagnosed with bipolar disorder. Chapter six, (Endlessly Intriguing) picks up the pace again with some interesting but brief treatment on the development of Brail. Interestingly, this chapter could have been about collaboration in the innovation process, but it is not really mentioned. Chapter six, (Painfully Obvious: Constraints) does a decent job of bring a focus on constraints as derived from perception and that we can view them as opportunities and not hard and fast rules to be overcome. From there on the book has little to add to the subject. Chapter ten, Suddenly Brilliant" isn't. The "Codes" are just those particular formula the few individual examples cited in the book use. The "Codes" is not developed well enough for the reader to be convinced this book provides a way to develop your own creativity code, which is the intent as near as I can discern.
5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0xa4b1a6f0) out of 5 stars Practical Help...for Supposed "Left Brained" Among Us! May 4 2008
By Mark C. Howell - Published on
Format: Hardcover
Looking for encouragement in your attempt to increase creativity? How about practical exercises that you can employ in stimulating innovation? The Riddle: Where Ideas Come From and How to Have Better Ones by Andrew Razeghi proposes that there are five precursors that "appear to be the most effective at inspiring creative insight: curiosity, constraints, conventions, connections, and codes." Does he prove it? I think so. Every chapter is finished off with a helpful list of implementable practices designed to help flex underdeveloped muscles. What could be better? Could certainly use a better collection of stories and examples. Other than that, this is a book that is packed with practical steps for the supposed "left brained" among us.
8 of 10 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0xa4bb6288) out of 5 stars Magnificent, a fun read with worthy insights Feb. 8 2008
By Arlyn R. Rubash - Published on
Format: Hardcover
The Riddle: Where Ideas Come From and How to Have Better Ones fills a void that serious managers should address to insure long-term success. For ages managers were satisfied to find new opportunities with nothing more sophisticated than serendipity. This mantra can be summarized as "Even a blind pig finds an acorn once in awhile." I have repeatedly asked, "Isn't there a better way to find useful ideas?" Razeghi provides an entertaining overview of the idea creation process. He examines foibles and successes from the past and explains what happened. Unlike other authors who never get past the entertaining phase, Razeghi concludes his book with a prescription for success. He identifies the general precursors needed for creating an environment conducive to fostering innovation. Curiosity, constraints, connections, conventions, and finally codes are used as a cleaver development of his principles. Finally, Razeghi enumerates a specific action plan that can be implemented. If you want your organization to stay in business and remain relevant for the long-term, read this book!
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0xa4b25b58) out of 5 stars Left-Brainers Listen Up! Aug. 17 2011
By Rachel Berbiglia - Published on
Format: Hardcover
This book changed the way I look at things forever. That is something that doesn't happen with every book I read, but should probably be one of the goals of any book, especially nonfiction. If you are in the mood to introduce a new way of thinking into your life, you should pick up this book.

Are you creative? That is something that most of us answer as a yes or no question. I would have answered `no' before reading The Riddle. One concept that I got from this book that had never occurred to me before is that creativity is not limited to what we traditionally call the arts. You see, I can't sing, play an instrument, dance, or draw, so I've always considered myself a left-brainer. But, Razeghi points out that creativity associated with solving problems is called innovation. Innovation and creativity are the same processes with different outcomes. I solve problems all day long. Voila! I'm creative. I'd like my membership card please!

I started Building a Bookshelf to solve a problem. There are lots of families out there who are struggling to put food on the table and pay the rent. They can't afford to buy their kids books. I wanted to solve that problem. I came up with a creative (innovative) way of doing this. Was my idea earth-shattering? No, I didn't reinvent the wheel. But, we've given out over 3,100 books this year. That could make a difference to at least one of the kids we touched.

One of the other big lessons I took from this book is that it is important to expose yourself to many different parts of life. When you get outside your comfort zone, you experience new things. These new things can help you look at those things within your comfort zone in a new light. I have always believed in learning new things from a philosophical stand point. I just never made the connection about how the information I learn in an area way outside my daily life could be beneficial to my daily life. So, I encourage you to do something different today. Pick up a magazine for a topic you know nothing about. Instead of checking your usual websites, find a new one. Or, instead of picking up another romance novel, pick up The Riddle. You'll be glad you did.
5 of 7 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0xa4b25f78) out of 5 stars Good but no cigar March 23 2008
By RLE - Published on
Format: Hardcover
Covers a lot of ground but does so in such a boring, visually unstimulating way. I expected a book on ideas to more mentally stimulating, too text bookish for me.