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The Eureka Method: How to Think Like an Inventor 1st Edition

4.9 out of 5 stars 17 customer reviews
ISBN-13: 978-0071770392
ISBN-10: 0071770399
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Editorial Reviews

About the Author

John Hershey has a Ph.D. in Electrical Engineering and has been granted 134 US Patents. He has served the adjunct faculty at the University of Colorado, Boulder; Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute; and Union College, Schenectady, New York. Dr. Hershey also served five years as a Program Evaluator for ABET (Accreditation Board for Engineering and Technology). He is an elected Fellow of the IEEE and the author/co-author of seven books, including Cryptography Demystified (McGraw-Hill, 2002). Dr. Hershey was the co-founder and was co-editor-in-chief (1991-1993) of Academic Press’ Digital Signal Processing.

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 256 pages
  • Publisher: McGraw-Hill Education TAB; 1 edition (September 20, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0071770399
  • ISBN-13: 978-0071770392
  • Product Dimensions: 7.4 x 0.5 x 9.3 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 15.5 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (17 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #460,230 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback
The Eureka Method: How to Think Like an Inventor

Dr. John Hershey's book on the Eureka Method is informative and entertaining. It is one of the best sources for any creative thinker. He explains the complicated technical aspects of the world of patents in terms of easily understadable language and examples. Most of these came from his 140+ patents, several books, and many scietific journal articles. His depth of knowledge in internet communications, satellite communications, applied mathematics, cryptography, and many others is phenominal. In addition, he uses his own experiences in patent world into power line communications, sensors, locomotive controls and railroading, and signal and communications applications to explain the patent intricacies. This book is an outstanding addition to anyone's library interested in patents.
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Dr. Hershey's book is out of the ordinary. His writing style is entertaining, simple and clear. And the content of the book is extremely valuable for those who are interested in innovation, patent protection, and related topics. The book stresses basic principles building on three questions inventors must internalize (quoting one: how can I broaden my invention?). It is amazing how the author is able to bring case studies or examples from cross disciplinary areas - from the Web and the Camera, communications technologies, to bar codes and cooking. Dr. Hershey also surfaces the importance of laws, regulations and standards in the invention opportunities. In simple terms, Dr. Hershey concludes each chapter with a snapshot or a recap; this is followed by an interesting set of discussion points that the reader will find thought-provoking.
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A must read for those interested in creative thinking, innovation and invention. Dr. Hershey's experience from his140+ patents is the foundation for his informative, stimulating and entertaining approach to a detailed process for producing more useful and valuable patents. The book is illustrated with patents ranging from peanut butter and jelly sandwiches and golf tees to locomotive remote controls, the internet, digital cameras and encryption. Dr. Hershey's steps to create inventions in the 5% category of patents that have a positive financial return should appeal to those in R & D, managers seeking to leverage their intellectual property and patent portfolios and those in the general public interested in a new, useful and non obvious approach to creative thinking.
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Format: Paperback
There are a lot of books that can take you through the processes of brainstorming, marketing an idea, or writing a patent application. While "The Eureka! Method" isn't a treatise on any one of these topics, it touches on each of these in how they relate to turning an idea into the kind of invention that can be the basis for a successful commercial endeavor.

The first portion of the book focuses on how to take the basis of an idea, and turn it into one (or more) inventions. The next portion of the book pursues how an invention's success is influenced by the way that the invention relates to the market demand, existing technological landscape, and regulatory environment - and how an invention can be tailored to better respond to each of these factors. Finally, the book provides a good overview of the essential aspects of the U.S. patent system, and how this set of laws can help, hinder, or befuddle someone on the path from idea to market.

Although presented in a straightforward and easy-to-read manner, the author doesn't shy away from including specific technical examples (spanning a variety of fields), or from presenting approaches to his subjects that are based on a higher-level understanding of how technology evolves. For instance, the "POP" score ('prescience of patent') presented by the author is an analytic tool that is appropriate for an MBA-level class for venture capitalists. However, the presentation of the concept fits well within this book (no advanced degrees required), and does not bog down with detail. Similarly, the presentation of the material remains accessible throughout, and provides a jumping-off point for anyone who is looking to delve further into any of these concepts.

In addition to the framework discussed above, "The Eureka!
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John Hershey is the most successful and well-known person to ever walk the halls of GE Global Research, earning his wide respect through true merit. Thus, when he told me years ago that he was thinking of writing this book, I knew it would contain gems of wisdom, some of which may seem deceptively simple at times. However, like all good masters of their craft, John reduces complex concepts into an easy to understand format that will be accessible to anyone with an interest in innovation.

Like most researchers, I have an interest in innovation and have taken the TRIZ training course. While TRIZ seems to be successful in promoting high-level processes and theories to induce innovation, John's book provides practical, realistic concepts that work--- particularly in a very large corporate environment.

Of particular enjoyment to me is the chapter on "Developing an Inventive Mindset by Gaming the System." The insight and motivation to invent using this technique is inspiring. The bottom-line is that this book will serve to inspire, motivate, and educate you to achieve new heights in creating innovation. It is a sine qua non for idea generation.
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