Sunday, April 29, 2007


My first assignment for the semester is to conceptualize, design and develop a digital game using the software Panda3d. I'm doing a Maya module, but we're using Maya 8.5 and a convertor to an .egg file does not exist yet. So we have to use 3dStudioMax to do our modelling, which would be extra effort, but I guess it's beneficial to learn both softwares.

Anyway, the first week we had to come up with 10 different concepts. It was quite difficult because you are easily consumed by conventional ideas. So I had to put on my green hat. Yep, I was in Dr. Edward De Bono's lateral thinking course for 3 years. It's quite amazing because I was enrolled into the course at the age of 7. At that point in time, I didn't learn much to be honest, I was too young. The lecturers were world-class professors and the pupils were some of the brightest in the country. But when I recall now, a lot of what I heard during the classes start to make a lot of sense to me. I have quite an amazing memory, fortunately.

Edward De Bono is a world-renowned psychologist who is considered a pioneer in the field of lateral thinking. In layman terms, lateral thinking is simply thinking 'out of the box'. He asserts that lateral thinking is not reactive, but deliberate. I think this is still contentious today. I personally think it's both, because dreams can't be deliberate and people have come up with ideas through their dreams. I just thought out of the box btw :p

Anyway, Edward De Bono categorizes thinking into 6 strategies. These 6 strategies are represented by 6 thinking hats. The White Hat represents factual thinking. Milynn has this hat on permanently imo :p The Red Hat represents emotional point of view. This hat is interesting because when we try to assess a problem, we usually think factually, morally, and strategically. We sometimes ignore the emotions of others, somewhat viewing emotion has an additive rather than a component. The Black Hat represents critical assessment. This hat is crucial because when you assess a problem, whether it's a design solution or a moral issue, you have to prioritize what matters most. The Yellow Hat suggests that there are positive aspects to a negative problem. Let's say, murder in society. Can murder be good? Not in that sense, but the existence of murder warns us that security matters and individual responsibility and vigilance counts in keeping everyone safe. The Green Hat is creative thinking, or, lateral thought. Creative thinking is a very contentious concept. Marshall McLuhan asserts that Man creates the future by looking into the past. So we're not that creative after all? I really don't know. The Blue Hat represents Process Control. Process Control is usually cited in managerial roles, whereby data is used to neutralize problems or form solutions.

I remember stintly that I would draw some rubbish creatures for Green hat exercises. What they did was to give us a piece of paper that had some curves and lines on it. Then we were told to continue the drawing in any fashion we liked. My teacher often told me to draw something without thinking. It's almost like ontology. I was bad at it, I would draw Godzillas and what not lol. I was a very quiet kid during classes, maybe because the other kids were imba. Some of them were incessantly giving input, to the point where no-one else bothered. I never was aggressive. I play diplomatically and use intellectual discourse to establish relationships.

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