Airbags protect drivers – but why not protect pedestrians too?

Deutsch: Phasenfoto der Funktionsweise von Len...    When we think of a car’s internal airbag, the first assumption is it protects the driver and front passenger.

This has been the safety feature in cars for decades, and will continue being so.

But here’s a “What if…” question:

“What if airbags can protect pedestrians?”

By pedestrians here, I mean exactly that: the people who throng the sidewalks, pavements and occasionally cross the roads. I can already sense the answer among the more enlightened beings to the question above: “Sure, why not?”

That’s exactly what Volvo has done. In a brilliant step in its relentless drive for auto-safety, Volvo has turned the table and done some reversal thinking in airbag technology:  it has just announced what it says is a first – an external airbag on the front of the car designed to help protect pedestrians in the event of a collision.

As they stated in their website:
“Sensors in the front bumper register the physical contact between the car and the pedestrian. The rear end of the bonnet is released and at the same time elevated by the deploying airbag. The inflated airbag covers the area under the raised bonnet plus approximately one third of the windscreen area and the lower part of the A-pillar.”

The driving force behind this safety feature for their 2013 V40 model is captured by Thomas Broberg, the company’s senior safety advisor, “Volvo aims to ensure that nobody should die or suffer serious injuries in a new Volvo car by the year 2020.”

Visit Volvo’s website to check the external airbag in action.

I think this is simply an awesome idea in protecting pedestrians from further or serious injury upon a collision with a car.

Now why didn’t any other auto-maker think of that? Will they now follow suit?

(For another idea using Reversal Thinking, click here)


10 tips to help you break your routine and be more creative

Routine. A quick check in an online dictionary describes it as “a prescribed, detailed course of action to be followed regularly; a standard procedure” (

We may be in this state without even knowing it. Getting up the same time each day, fixing the same breakfast, going to work the same way, getting caught up in the daily grind, doing our best to meet deadlines with no room to do anything different.

If not checked, routine breeds monotony. It is like falling into a rut and finding no motivation to get out of it. Stay too long in it, and you will lose the impulse, knack or desire to go that one extra step that moves you ahead of the game. The reason is because routine gives you a sense of comfort and predictability.

And when trying to think up new ideas or do something new, staying in routine is like a self-imposed mental and emotional prison that stops you from even taking the first step.

But you’re holding yourself back if you get too caught up in routine. Not breaking free and embracing some change can sometimes leave you far behind.

Continue reading

Creative or “Wrong” Answers to Test Questions?

I got these amusing images in my email. You’ve probably seen them before too.

Have a look at the answers given to some test questions. The students were of course “not wrong”. Although they may have scored “zero” for a test on knowledge, I think they still scored top marks for creative and “not wrong” answers.

Looking from a different perspective, were they really “wrong”?.

I know what you are thinking: they were being tested for their knowledge and grasp of the subject, so they should have given the answers expected to prove it. I do not disagree with this, because they are in an institution to learn and a form of assessment is required from time to time to gauge their knowledge.

But on the other hand, the teacher should also encourage creative thinking. Continue reading

An awesome idea: Win customers by making them disloyal!

Get more customers – by making them disloyal!

How’s that for a brilliant example of how “Reversal Thinking” works in creating a bold new idea?

This idea has its roots in England where the 2009 World Barista champion Gwilym Davies initiated the idea in his own café. Erik Posthuma from Antics – Digital Creative Agency and Luke Norman – coffee connoisseur and writer of, decided to try it out in Singapore. The participating cafés were Jewel Coffee, Smitten, Jimmy Monkey, Loysel’s Toy, Forty Hands, Oriole, Broers Café & SOHO Coffee.

The campaign ended on 31st December 2011. From what I heard, the response from customers, cafes, and publications like Springwise has been great.

When almost every retailer I heard of is working their guts off thinking up new tactics and promotions in winning over customers, this concept came as a refreshing breeze.

Continue reading

Link: How To Be More Interesting (In 10 Simple Steps)

A great, short and sweet article I just found on Forbes site. Click here to read it.

Now isn’t that just what we should do? Be simple, be shameless, be aware, be innocent, just kick off those shoes and dance and live and share. In short, its about being you. Ignore what people are going to say. Ignore your ego, or the naysayers inside you and outside, go explore, discover, play. Just do.





This Christmas, remember to send your greeting – differently!

Its the time of the year again. Besides the shopping, wrapping and baking (and eating of course), there’s also the Christmas greetings to be sent to your family, friends, customers, clients, partners… the list may be endless.

So like most people, you may start scrambling to get the cards out, scribble a warm wish and sign off. Many companies usually have all staff signing off, some even have cards pre-printed with all signatures. I’ve had my share of cards coming my way signed off this way. What can be more impersonal than that? In this day of paper and tree-saving, its almost a crime to do this again.

So imagine my delight to hear what a good friend is doing for all her clients and partners: send them a video greeting!

The company is Redbox Studio, located in Penang but serving clients all over Malaysia. Continue reading

Great Quotes About IDEAS!

Here’s a few great quotes that underline the importance of Ideas. Hope you enjoy reading them:

“Nearly every man who develops an idea works it up to the point where it looks impossible, and then he gets discouraged. That’s not the place to become discouraged.”
–  Thomas Edison

“If you have an apple and I have an apple and we exchange these apples then you and I will still each have one apple. But if you have an idea and I have an idea and we exchange these ideas, then each of us will have two ideas.” 
–  George Bernard Shaw 

An idea that is not dangerous is unworthy of being called an idea at all.
– Oscar Wilde

Take up one idea. Make that one idea your life – think of it, dream of it, live on that idea. Let the brain, muscles, nerves, every part of your body, be full of that idea, and just leave every other idea alone. This is the way to success, that is way great spiritual giants are produced.
– Swami Vivekananda

An idea that is developed and put into action is more important than an idea that exists only as an idea.
– Buddha

Good ideas are common – what’s uncommon are people who’ll work hard enough to bring them about.
– Ashleigh Brilliant

Continue reading

Forget powerpoint: present with dance!

Next time you want to present something, use dancers instead of powerpoint.

Sounds crazy? Ah… but I say what a simple and brilliant idea! Think of the amazing possibilities you create with this idea:

  • You present, teach and entertain in a bold new way
  • You turn a boring presentation into a spellbinding session the audience remembers forever
  • Provide extra income for struggling dancers
  • You WILL stand out!

I came across this amazing idea from a TED Talk a friend sent me. And immediately I saw the brilliance behind it, in a creative standpoint. Continue reading

“Why Management Ideas Matter” – article in Harvard Business Review Blog

I just read this article and found the writers’ (Des Dearlove and Stuart Crainer, founders and directors of the Thinkers50) arguments quite compelling, about the importance of management ideas today.

In any field, including business, ideas are important. A simplistic notion, maybe, but with implications. Every idea brings with it its own uniqueness and potential for the field it is related to. Businesses struggle when faced with new threats to their way of doing things: the production and delivery of their services at speed, advertising and promotion in an age of message overkill, recruitment of the right talent, diminishing resources, etc. New entrants keep overturning traditional ways of doing things, and that’s why old solutions do not have much impact anymore. Business thinkers provide fresh perspectives and solutions produced from their research and insights, and it pays sometimes to listen to their wisdom to benefit from their ideas.

The simple reason is this: management ideas helps management gets things done.

Read the article here.

Striptease + Cycling = Losing Weight!

I just saw this cool ad on youtube and thought its a fantastic example of how Connections work in creating a new idea: by connecting 2 separate ideas together to create something new.

In this case, they combined the idea of a striptease and that of cycling and lo and behold! A new way to lose those calories!

Enjoy the video.