We will solve all the impossible problems – eventually

Categories: Innovation Insights

Today I am writing in a flying tube that, according to the wisest people just one hundred years ago, cannot fly. I am typing into a tiny computer – my second HP iPaq – despite claims that there would only be a need for a few computers – ever. Before I left the ground, I called Sweden, the UK, I left a voice mail for someone in the US, all from a gadget – the mobile phone – that was unimaginable just twenty-five years ago by all the experts in telephony.

I have been reading a good book – The Fruits of War – that raises many issues about how innovations come about, and how warfare makes basic needs all the more pressing. I intend to write more on this topic, but one subtle message did ring out, and that was the general negativity and apathy towards new inventions. It seems as though many people are programmed to be negative, to squish the visions of the innovator, to replay the role the original luddites played when they destroyed farm machinery.

These people have universally been proved wrong. Often they have been right, but for a period of time only. Sometimes they highlighted the right problems, and then were frustrated by some bright solution to an insoluble problem.

My prediction is that this will always be the same. We will always have naysayers stating that problems cannot be solved, and bright people solving impossible problems. To me this means that all the impossible problems, from finding drugs that cure people to reaching Mars and beyond, are all doable. The naysayers are will always be there, but there is nothing like a challenge to stimulate human creativity!

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