Get Ideas for your Next Project!

What should you do when you want to do everything? If you're fascinated by everything, and you've been called dabbler, dilettante, undisciplined, indecisive etc., this forum is for you.

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Get Ideas for your Next Project!

Postby HappyMind » Wed Dec 11, 2013 8:20 pm

Hello fellow Scanners!

I know we all LOVE diversity and that sometimes it can be difficult to find inspiring ideas (and sometimes we have too many -- I know!!), so I thought : why not open a forum entry where each of us can list the kinds of projects we did under the scanner-category they belonged to, so that other scanners can have a look at our lists and come up with some inspiration for new projects or concept-explorations of their own? Then, explore other people's lists for ideas of your own!

Just copy-past the template below and replace with your own projects to share with us! :)


***

INTERESTS, PROJECTS & PASSIONS IDEAS FOR SCANNERS

IDEAS FOR SYBILS - ''I never know where to start -- I just have so many things I constantly want to do, and doing one might mean missing on so many others!''

- Sketching botanic drawings, architectural designs (ex. Gaudi), and human body (ex. Grey's Anatomy and Bridgman's), or cartoons from images found on Pinterest
- Reading novels, books, magazines and blogs: biographies to understand the context where people from other generations lived in, fantasy to look at worlds of possibilities, non-fiction books on everyday presence of math in our lives, the effect of technology on daily life, history of philosophy, music history accompanied by a CD, art appreciation books, books on where things come from (etymology, history of spices and trade, or colors and dyes, etc.), psychological biology...
- Write: writing a poem with a workbook of poetry, writing a blog entry on my professional or personal blogs, writing a travel journal when abroad

IDEAS FOR PLATE-SPNNERS - ''My friends or coworkers are often asking me with help on their project or crisis, and so I end up involved in 10 000 projects at the same time!''

- Making Videos for friends' businesses and events to help them have advertising material
- Crafting and conducting interviews with well-known people in my industry to share on social media networks (ex. Linked In)
- Helping envision a new websites (and sometimes coding them) for my friends' small businesses


SERIAL SPECIALIST - '' I'll have a hobby for 4-5 years and then move on.''

- Take university lessons in choir, classical music and jazz both in a ear training & theory class and with an instrument (supplement by reading biographies and insightful books produced by great musicians such as Leonard Bernstein and Wynton Marsalis); learn to conduct an orchestra and study atonal music and modes from ancient Greece to impressionists!
- Go to an astronomy camp for several year with people who are all completing their PhDs in astrophysics - you'll be surprised at how much knowledge they will be happy to share in the face of your enthusiasm! Take astro-photography courses if you love a more hands-on hobby. You can also learn astronomical sketches for observation nights with telescopes.
- Make videos of very different styles: try your hand at trailers, stop-motion videos, ones with a blue screen, experiment with special effects, or just short videos showing moods without story-lines, music video clips, multi-trakcs, cartoons... (Then try your hand at photography : journalistic, portraits, urban, travel, B&W, etc to experience the contrast between stillness and movement capture)
- Experiment with sounds: explore singing by singing along to music you play with your instruments at home, explore music styles and interpret them in various languages (folk songs from all over the world), try recording multi-tracks, try karaoke singing of creative-common songs or even writing and producing your own creative-common song and sharing it with the world, try making your own music video-clip!)


SERIAL MASTER - ''I love pushing my limits and learning to master something unknown to me, and I love pushing others to go beyond their limits and fulfill their potential''

- Get into a national-level team for an artistic sport such as synchronized-swimming, swing dancing or other types of dancing
- Get to the national-level competition in Debate and travel around the country as you qualify for finals
- Compete in national business case competitions and try your mind at solving companies' dilemmas
- Spend a 7 years volunteering for a humanitarian organization and try out different leadership positions until you reach the international-level opportunities to share your knowledge and give back to the future leaders
- Run your own business or non-for-profit organization for 3 years, then go do something else
- Learn to plate food - learn through youtube, books, workshops - then perhaps expand that passion to photographing your creations, then go try something else!


JACK-OF-ALL-TRADES - '' I am very good at many things, but not great at any particular one ''
- At school : try a minor and major into unrelated fields, double-majors, generalized-studies (ex. MBA as opposed to marketing researcher specialist), take lots of electives and extra-curricular -- and keep up with them even once you graduate
- At work: take a highly-diversified job where you can learn about the industry on each mandate and earn a living from using your logic and making connections amongst your vast knowledge (ex. business consultant, functional analyst, etc.)



WANDERER - '' Everything around me looks so interesting - I don't understand how others can get bored! ''

- Explore linguistics - looks up the origins of all languages (the Proto-Indian-European Language), study etymology, sign-up for foreign language classes, watch documentaries on other cultures and their grammar, look up Chomsky's linguistic work, Timothy Donaldson, Dan Everett, and other Big Thinkers in phonetics and linguistics)
- Mathematics - take a ''joy of math'' class at your local university, read books on everyday math, look up Hans Rosling, explore data vizualisation, check out some information on the Excel graphic errors in representations, try reading books on operations management and business laws to understand the role of statistics in businesses in our community, watch math demonstrations, try exploring applied math in fields such as computer science (ex. look up relational algebra) and in architecture (look up Gaudi), listen to Khan Academy's - both the complex topics and the most basic ones to learn how to explain it to someone else (try tutoring a child!)
- Cartography - look up old maps in museums and on the internet, explore the ones in mythical worlds (ex. Tolkien), read on the connection between narratives and cartography, learn the architectural rules to design a plan of your home (or even just one room), explore on Google Maps, visualize historical maps or trace back the road of explorers or pirates on the seas, grab a scratch world map and scratch every country you visit as you go
- Philosophy: read books like Big Small Minds, the rough guide to happiness, and all of Alain de Botton's books (on travel, art, etc.), watch youtube videos about rhetoric and philosophy, try what the French call ''dissertations'' ( you can find the exercise and examples of ''good'' dissertation on the web as it is part of their high school program).
- Art: visit museums, try to paint ''in the way of...'' (different artist you pick), use tools like Pandora, 8tracks and Musicovery to discover new music; ask friends to compile a playlist for (or with) you to discover new things, make a yearly CD of your memorable songs of the year, watch documentary or fictional movies about musicians, buy one new CD in every country you visit, to discover new influences.
- Psychology : go to a mini-university class in your community, read up psychology magazines (ex. Scientific American), try out some psychometric tests such as the MBTI, read books from well-known thinkers like Daniel Goalman (or whatever is popular these days), make yourself a friend who has studied in psychology and quiz them!
- Etching, Mosaic, Painted-Glass : Take a class for fun for 3 months - enough to get a few artwork produced in the class - and offer them as gifts on holidays and birthdays to your friends and family


SAMPLER
- '' I want to experience everything once - and just once ''

- Participate in a one-day stocks simulation competition
- Cook a new dish every day
- Make a new craft with your friends on a special gathering
- Create a boardgame club and go to a special games café so you can try a new game every time!


HIGH-SPEED INDECISIVE - '' I spot opportunities everywhere! I don't really care about realizing them!''

- Offer to be the person who draws the mind-map or other special diagrams at meetings to help people see links and conceptualize their discussions - without being the person having to carry on implementation of the project
- Help out the office by organizing trainings - suggest training ideas and potential resources and enlist the help of other colleagues to make the details happen
- Organize a gathering for your friends or a party for colleagues - come up with the concept and the steps to make it happen, then delegate to make that vision come true!
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Re: Get Ideas for your Next Project!

Postby SquarePeg » Thu Dec 12, 2013 12:17 pm

Hi HappyMind, and Welcome!

Did you do all those things! Wow!

I'm currently re-reading "Refuse to Choose." First time through, I didn't bother to do the exercises -- I was just so intrigued by the material! This time, I'm *thinking* about doing them, particularly the "Things I've tried." So your suggestion fits right into where I'm at now!
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Re: Get Ideas for your Next Project!

Postby HappyMind » Thu Dec 12, 2013 10:22 pm

Oh how awesome, Square Peg!! Do come back and share! I'd LOVE some inspiration. I still have a list of things I'd love to explore but I am certain ideas from fellow Scanners could light a spark! ;)

And yes I did do all of these things but I am CERTAIN you too have things that might look quite ordinary to you, and that will look extraordinary and exotic/foreign/new to us! Do share :))
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Re: Get Ideas for your Next Project!

Postby SquarePeg » Fri Dec 13, 2013 6:25 am

Just a brief follow-on to your list...

I love Pandora. I discovered Reverbnation recently. A local singer / songwriter I discovered has an account on it. It's another way to learn about musical artists, but also with a geographic basis. It's like Pandora for concert goers. For example, choose a genre and then find bands that play that music locally. Musicians friend or fav others, etc.

Have you studied Aramaic?

Learning to play the harmonica might interest you.

I have some Scanner Daybook entries online on my blog..... To be continued...
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Re: Get Ideas for your Next Project!

Postby SquarePeg » Sat Dec 14, 2013 9:34 am

Here's a list on my blog, organized roughly by topic:
http://square--peg.blogspot.com/2013/12 ... -list.html

Getting it into the format as you did will be challenging. It was hard enough organizing by topic. For example, yoga might go into Health, Sport / Recreation and get coupled with meditation. I suppose it could appear more than once, but I wanted to avoid that. I wanted the number of lines in the list to represent the number of unique activities.
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Re: Get Ideas for your Next Project!

Postby HappyMind » Wed May 14, 2014 10:16 am

That looks like great ideas! I'll check these out!

You might like the musicovery app as well, in the same strand of ideas.

Recently, I've started some mini physical challenges all linked with a final travel plan to escalate a volcano on our next vacation -- and it's been a nice way to tie together things as random and varried as snoe shoeing, downhill skiing, swimming, hiking and local marathon-types of competitions :)

It's great to have diversity - while having a sense of continuity! :)
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Re: Get Ideas for your Next Project!

Postby Elaine Glimme » Fri May 23, 2014 1:04 pm

You're really going to climb a volcano? So cool! After you've done it, tell us about it.
Elaine Glimme - author - "Temporary Address" and "The Molly Chronicles"
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Re: Get Ideas for your Next Project!

Postby emspace » Mon Jul 21, 2014 10:30 am

INTERESTS, PROJECTS & PASSIONS IDEAS FOR SCANNERS

SYBILS - ''I never know where to start -- I just have so many things I constantly want to do, and doing one might mean missing on so many others!''

PLATE-SPNNERS - ''My friends or coworkers are often asking me with help on their project or crisis, and so I end up involved in 10 000 projects at the same time!''

JACK-OF-ALL-TRADES - '' I am very good at many things, but not great at any particular one ''

WANDERER - '' Everything around me looks so interesting - I don't understand how others can get bored! ''


I think I’m a bit of all of the above, so I don’t know which to put my suggestions under. Here are some things I’ve done to try to get it all in as a Scanner:

Got into digital multimedia as a career: this meant that I started out designing and coding interactive multimedia presentations, got into web design and front-end development and back-end coding, website architecture, user interface and user experience design, database design, web writing and editing, digital photography editing and post-processing, videography and video editing/post-processing, video animation, digital typography, and now filmmaking and cinematography. This is an endless well of things to learn, but they’re all heavily centred around sitting in front of a computer most of the day. Unless you get into more video production and photography and delegate the editing. It also takes up both the spatial design mind and the logical thinking mind so if you want to stay balanced, you can.

Volunteered at workshops & conventions of areas I’m interested in. You can go to 60-90 min breakout sessions of topics you wouldn’t otherwise get to dabble in amongst people you wouldn’t normally be qualified to engage with. I’ve volunteered at a physiotherapy conference and was able to choose some of the sessions I wanted to man the door for. When I was off shift, I could get into anything I wanted. I am not a physiotherapist, but I’m really interested in biomechanics and manual therapy and rehabilitation. Then at the marketplace you can get great discounts on products and books.

Volunteered at hospital sports medicine clinic so I could see the diagnosis and treatment of musculoskeletal dysfunction up close and personal.

Volunteered through Earthwatch on science projects around the world. Instead of going on a package holiday tour, working somewhere for a period of about 2 weeks among people who live in the region and speak the language is an incredible travel experience for a Scanner. You get to be in a different part of the world, you get to see part of the country off the beaten path of tourists and often even the locals, you get to learn about the ecology, the culture, the natural history, the local history of a place from the people who’ve studied it and lived it, and you get to help with research that will hopefully help the world in some way: more knowledge about how the ecosystem works, how to manage resources, or preservation of local knowledge. It’s not cheap though.

Volunteered to be a primary school math tutor and high school tutor to be able to help students in every subject while getting to use one of my skills as a coach. As a high school tutor in this one program, I show up and never know who I’ll be helping or in what subject. Pretty fantastic for a Scanner, and the administrators loved me because I could tutor French, Art History, Astronomy, Calculus, and so on without fear.

Volunteered to take photos for a non-profit (Jane’s Walk), to document their annual festival of events. This position gave me the opportunity to take photographs obviously, but to practice challenging myself to take interesting photographs with little control over location and light. It’s great practice for travel photography, trying to find the best light, the best moments with little to no planning, always on the go. Also, it’s a great way to meet interesting people (some of them also Scanners!) both from the area and visiting.

Coached rowing after work and on weekends: Love to row but rowing memberships are outrageous. So I supplemented my membership fee by coaching beginners, which is also incredibly fun for me. I love coaching, love the water, love physical activity, and I love being outdoors. Really a perfect gig for someone like that.

Pop-up book engineering: just a new thing I got into this year. Fun for people who like to use their manual dexterity, their spatial reasoning, and illustration. Not easy and not tidy, but very engrossing.

Storytelling from every angle: If you love telling stories, you can do this learning to incorporate all different media: writing, photography, illustration, pop-up art, videography, digital or concrete. My favourite is in photo essays, but I’m exploring more ways to use more media.

Pottery making: If you sit in front of a computer (like me) and design in pixels, something like sculpture and pottery ceramics is perfect for getting your manual touch needs met. I know a lot of people knit or sew or crochet. Same thing. But with clay, there’s a bonus of scratching the childish itch to play in mud, to get dirty and messy. Mainly, I went to classes to knead the clay and mold it, but I hardly made anything. I’m too much of a perfectionist to like any of the crap I make, so I just play and at the end of class, throw the bit of clay into the slip.

I’ve got more…
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Re: Get Ideas for your Next Project!

Postby SquarePeg » Mon Jul 21, 2014 1:29 pm

Hi emspace, I enjoyed reading your post. I was especially intrigued with Earthwatch because it's exactly the kind of thing I was looking to do to fill my vacation time. But then I read at the very end, "It’s not cheap though," which took the wind out of my sails. Surprising there's one in Boston that's doable for me.
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Re: Get Ideas for your Next Project!

Postby emspace » Tue Jul 22, 2014 5:46 am

SquarePeg wrote:Hi emspace, I enjoyed reading your post. I was especially intrigued with Earthwatch because it's exactly the kind of thing I was looking to do to fill my vacation time. But then I read at the very end, "It’s not cheap though," which took the wind out of my sails. Surprising there's one in Boston that's doable for me.


Oh SP, I highly recommended going, especially if you’re American. I forgot to include the one especially big bonus for Americans: the fees are tax-deductible and so is your flight if you don’t tack on extra days around the volunteering. That helps “discount” the cost a bit if you get a tax credit for part of it. I’m not American and haven’t filed US taxes so I don’t know what that works out to.

The reason I got to go to so many expeditions was because my employers let us decide where to “spend” their charitable contribution money every year for a decade. When I discovered Earthwatch, it was a triple score: our team got to help environmental research directly, our owners got tax credits, and someone (ended up mainly me) got to go on these trips and have an incredible experience. We had to pay our own flights and incidentals, but the expedition fee was fully covered.

Before the money dried up, I ended up going to 5, I sent one of our receptionists to Alaska, and another friend came with me to Kenya, where we added on two extra weeks to safari and visit her home town. I tried to get more to commit, but although many people expressed an interest, no one else went. Too bad for them; great for me!
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