Lateral Thinking Thinking that is Outside the Box! Can You Solve this Puzzle? Can You Solve this Puzzle? Can You Solve this Puzzle? Can You Solve this Puzzle? Lateral Thinking Lateral thinking is a term coined by Edward de Bono, a Maltese psychologist, physician, and writer de Bono defines Lateral Thinking as methods of thinking concerned with changing concepts and perception. What is Lateral Thinking? Lateral thinking is about reasoning that is not immediately obvious Ideas may not be obtainable by using only traditional step-by-step logic. Techniques that apply lateral thinking to problems are characterized by the shifting of thinking patterns away from entrenched or predictable thinking to new or unexpected ideas. What is Lateral Thinking? A new idea that is the result of lateral thinking is not always a helpful one When a good idea is discovered in this way it is usually obvious in hindsight Lateral Thinking Example It took two hours for two men to dig a hole five feet deep. How deep would it have been if ten men had dug the hole for two hours? The answer appears to be 25 feet deep But did you consider…? A hole may need to be of a certain size or shape so digging might stop early at a required depth. The deeper a hole is, the more effort is required to dig it, since waste soil needs to be lifted higher to the ground level. There is a limit to how deep a hole can be dug by manpower without use of ladders or hoists for soil removal, and 25 feet is beyond this limit. But did you consider…? Deeper soil layers may be harder to dig out, or we may hit bedrock or the water table. Are we digging in soil? Clay? Sand? Each presents its own special considerations. Digging in a forest becomes much easier once we have cut through the first several feet of roots. Each man digging needs space to use a shovel. But did you consider…? It is possible that with more people working on a project, each person may become less efficient due to increased opportunity for distraction, the assumption he can slack off, more people to talk to, etc. More men could work in shifts to dig faster for longer. There are more men but are there more shovels? But did you consider…? The two hours dug by ten men may be under different weather conditions than the two hours dug by two men. Rain could flood the hole to prevent digging. Temperature conditions may freeze the men before they finish. Would we rather have 5 holes each 5 feet deep? But did you consider…? The two men may be an engineering crew with digging machinery. What if one man in each group is a manager who will not actually dig? The extra eight men might not be strong enough to dig, or much stronger than the first two. Crime Scene Investigation Crime Scene Investigators must use lateral thinking techniques when trying to determine what most likely happened Theories as to what happened will be developed based on evidence and witness testimony Theories and either proven or found to be not probable You Try! At the Crime Scene: A body is discovered in a park in Toronto in the middle of a sweltering hot summer. It has a fractured skull and many other broken bones, but the cause of death was hypothermia. You Try! A Theory: A poor peasant from somewhere in Europe desperately wants to immigrant to Canada. Lacking money for airfare, he stows away in the landing gear compartment of a jet. He dies of hypothermia in mid-flight and falls out when the compartment opens as the plane makes its final approach. You Try! At the Crime Scene: The body of a man, who dies as a result of hanging, is discovered in an otherwise completely empty locked room with a puddle of water under his feet. Yet the police determine that his death was the result of a suicide. You Try! A Theory: He stood on a block of ice to hang himself. You Try! At the Crime Scene: A man is lying dead, face down in the middle of a field. He's wearing a backpack. How did this man die? You Try! A Theory: He jumped out of an airplane, but his parachute failed to open. You Try! At the Crime Scene: The body of a man, wearing swimming trunks, a mask and snorkel, and flippers is lying drowned in a dead forest. There are no bodies of water within a 100 kilometer radius. How could the man have drowned to death? You Try! A Theory: He was scuba diving when a firefighting plane landed nearby and filled its tanks with water, sucking him in. He ran out of air while the plane was in flight; then the water, with him in it, was dumped onto a burning forest. You Try! At the Crime Scene: Two people go to a New Year’s Eve party. There, they immediately head to the punch bowl and serve themselves identical drinks. One lives; the other dies. It is a case of murder in the first degree! You Try! A Theory: The drinks contain poisoned ice cubes; one man drinks slowly, giving them time to melt, while the other drinks quickly and thus doesn't get much of the poison.