Thinker it through

Via John Maeda's announcement that he was blogging the Illinois Institute of Technology's Design Strategy Conference, I found "ThinkeringSpaces," which is a cool name and a better cause. The MacArthur-funded ThinkeringSpaces are

interactiveenvironments that encourage school age children to tinker with things, both physical and virtual, reflect upon what they discover, and elaborate their ideas in ways they can share with others.

Having watched my two young sons grow up interacting with computer games, I'm an optimist about information technology and gaming. I've undoubtedly set the bar pretty low, but they'll both be a bit brighter than their dad in part because they've had access to the instant feedback from computer gaming. For heaven's sake, I surreptitiously watched my 5 year old playing CHESS on the home iMac last week. And no, I never showed him how.

Anyway, at the top of the Design Strategy conference blog right right now is a great quote from Nicholas Negroponte, founder of the One Laptop Per Child initiative on design strategy.

Creativity comes from differences. The best design strategy for almost anything is to explore differences.

Hundreds of years from now, I believe historians will look back on the convergence of design and strategy in virtual environments as a monumental time in human history.

Thinker it through.