5 Tools I Use for Innovation and Creativity

I enjoy reading as well as listening to podcasts and audible books. With all the information I come across, I have to capture, organize, and recall to use them. I'm currently working on a new book as well as some disruptive innovation courses and workshops. The real challenge for me is finding a single tool that solves the issues stated.

Tools for Innovation

The Importance of Utilizing Tools

Over the last six months, I challenged myself to find the right tools for innovation. I combined them in a way that I can capture the input, organize it, and make it easy to retrieve. The criteria I emphasized was usability on a mobile phone and desktop. I carry an Android, iPhone, and laptop on me, as well as an iPad Pro.

I need tools to collect from books, podcasts, websites, magazines, and emails—information collection with minimal manual steps. The tools also need to adapt as the content focus shifts.

As of late, ethical innovation is my focus. Sometimes my focus shifts to discussing the digital divide and other things. I also need to be able to find information without remembering exact wording. I need tools that create the serendipity effect.

The 5 Tools I Use

Tools for Information Collection

The first tool I have used for innovation is the Moleskine notebook, which I have thousands of. Recently I have shifted to the reMarkable 2 tablet. Using the tablet is like writing on paper but better. There is a pen for writing and erasing, and it stores and exports all my information to my mobile phone and desktop. I actually wrote out the entire script for today’s show on my tablet.

On top of my writing, I read a lot of information from RSS news feeds. I am a big user of Feedly— for access to its AI engine. Very trainable, it interprets sentences to see what concepts are being talked about. I scan through 500-600 articles a day and save different feeds that I like to the Pocket app. The Pocket app is a collection of things that you save to read at a later time.

Another tool I get information from is through my Kindle Oasis. In the Kindle, I can highlight things I like. They are automatically fed into my workflow for future inspiration.

Podcasts are also things that I capture content from. Using an app called Airr, I use their podcast snippet that can capture interests with a touch of the screen. Otter.ai is another tool I am experimenting with to help me capture ideation sessions.

Organization/Combination, and Serendipity Tools

One tool that I found recently was Readwise. It collects and combines everything from my Pocket, podcasts, Kindle, hardcover books, articles. It also points out things in your collection that you might not have picked up. Readwise may trigger serendipity.

While Readwise is great, it only prepares information for what I am looking for. I also found an impressive tool called Roam Research. It takes everything from Readwise and organizes them. It connects words and concepts for you. Roam Research runs very well on mobile phones. I use the software for my show content, books, articles, as well as my project work.

To know more about tools for innovation and creativity, listen to this week's show: 5 Tools I use for Innovation and Creativity.

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