Wednesday, October 15, 2008


TRIZ for Software

Darrell Mann's LONG-awaited book Systematic (Software) Innovation is now available from I'm offering this blog as a way to collect comments/questions/discussion, either on the book or on the subject in general.

Hi Ellen,

Here is my take...
I have just received the book, Systematic (Software) Innovation from Darrell Mann. He had mentioned about his book several times in last 4 years and the anticipation had become oblivious at some point of time for us. Last month he told me the launch of his latest book, Systematic Innovation for software and now I'm almost half done with that.

If you would have read his early edition of Systematic Innovation for business & Mgmt, and Technology, this is an easy read (hence I could finish half), flipping through the pages will do. However, if you are interested in learning TRIZ for software and are new to this concept, consider this as a good reference book, and suggest a thorough read, but not a very easy read as a book from Christensen..

First impression – Considerable changes in his style; not difficult to read, usage of nice and catchy words, phrases, simple explanation of the techniques. This is a great improvement considering his previous books.

I'm not intending here for a complete review. I guess, I need to read (or flip through) this completely to do enough justice to that. But, something out-there-in-my-mind:

- Good examples used across. However, should have had more detailed examples with "real" software stuffs; data structure, algorithms, architecture design etc. Considering the time he had taken for this book, I can understand how difficult it would be. But surely great scope for the future editions.

- Has covered lot of UI examples. I'm happy to see the Google search engine is there in his book

- Using perception mapping for software – I was expecting to see something more of this use in software when we were exchanging notes long time back.

- Very good, step-by-step approach to applying it in actual problem with lot of templates. Definitely a good help for the first timers, and especially for the software guys.

- A sole good chapter devoted how to teach this – Well thought through. Will help lot of new people would want to embrace this in their organization

- Last couple of chapters about the fascinating (for me at least) concepts about ToE (Theory of Everything). I'm sure he is writing his next book with this concept.

What is important to note here is that he started the book with a very important fact (Everybody in the software domain should know that); no real innovation in software for last several years (don't look at the USPTO website, he says they aren't necessarily new invention in the software world), and the innovation in software can actually happen not at the core, but at the outer layer – Design, functions etc.

Finally – Thanks to Darrell. Last four years of applying TRIZ for software in my company (no book targeting TRIZ for software existed until now) deriving our own approaches from the basic TRIZ and his previous books has been validated now. I can go back and show his book, applications, case studies, approaches to those who weren't ready to listen what I had to say without any "master data"!
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