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Innovation for Underdogs: How to Make the Leap from What If to Now What [Hardcover]

Dr David Pensak , Elizabeth Licorish
2.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
RRP: 16.99
Price: 15.67 & FREE Delivery in the UK. Details
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Book Description

15 Nov 2008
Have you ever wanted to change your life? Make it easier or, at least, get rid of the tough stuff? Have you ever simply asked yourself, What if? Anyone who wants a void filled, a problem solved or a question answered, can learn to innovate. And it doesn't matter how much education you have or how high you sit on the corporate ladder. If you think that learning innovation means reading boring instructional manuals and paying a fortune for classes, you're wrong. This book is a witty, intelligent and humorous entry into the mind of one of the world's greatest innovators, Dr. David Pensak. Creator of the first Internet firewall, Dr. Pensak has amassed a huge wealth of innovation inspiration through his own critical work. But he's discovered some of the greatest truths about innovation through his experiences with others - his childhood lessons from Einstein, his work as a university professor and his highly esteemed innovation lectures throughout the world. INNOVATION FOR UNDERDOGS shows the underdog (that would be you) how to dig to the root of your greatest problems and surface with solutions to make life a lot easier (and more lucrative!). Using entertaining, energetic and enlightening stories from Dr. Pensak's experience, this book makes it clear that the underdog is bred for creativity. Within these pages, you will learn how to clearly define and solve a problem and how to market the solution. Filled to the brim with advice, examples and exclusive interviews, INNOVATION FOR UNDERDOGS is the creative person's best friend.

Product details

  • Hardcover: 224 pages
  • Publisher: Career Press; 1 edition (15 Nov 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1601630352
  • ISBN-13: 978-1601630353
  • Product Dimensions: 21.5 x 14 x 2 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 2.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 5,508,684 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
2.0 out of 5 stars Stretching the analogy a bit too far.... 11 Mar 2011
By Nomesky
I just didn't get this book. Dr Pensak stretches the "underdog" analogy too far. I didn't find anything here on any value. The more Dr Pensak highlighted his innovative past, the less I believed mere mortals could be creative - this is man who taught himself a computer language in a matter of days in order to write a computer programme to analyse a scientists stats. Now I do not believe this is something that 'just anybody' can achieve.

There are much better books on creativity and innovation around ("Sticky Wisdom" by WhatIf? is by far the best, to my mind) which do indeed show that creativity is in the hands of us all.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 5.0 out of 5 stars  15 reviews
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Fascinating Informative Read From Inventor of the Firewall 30 Dec 2008
By James - Published on
This is a fascinating book -- truly informative and fun to read. It is one that brings to life real-world examples that illuminate how something is transformed from an idea into a reality in the marketplace. More importantly, Pensak has the credentials to back him up -- as the inventor of the firewall which was the world's most important invention to transform computer security, he was also the Chief Scientist at Dupont for many years, and has taught at University of Pennsylvania's Wharton School of Business. Never boring and always interesting - readers begin to understand how innovation begins with the smallest ideas (ie; making drugs that only need to be taken once a day versus 5 times) to something as large as making an international conglomerate compete effectively in today's global marketplace. The book expounds on everything innovation-related: from processes to products, from near-catastrophe to capital. A nice plus that is different from other books on innovation, Pensak gives hope to the entrepreneur and inventor -- teaching them "how to think" about innovation and how to make peace with the dozens of ideas many have at once, in order to get one to marketplace successfully. He chronicles what can go wrong and how to avoid it, and ends one of the last few chapters with one of the most pressing issues of our time, global warming and clean energy. Included is an insightful chapter on financing the venture, as well as historical perspective on the world's earliest innovators. An insightful read and page-turner.
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars ENERGIZING! 6 Jan 2009
By E.D. - Published on
Truly a book that will help you recognize your own creative energy and how to capitalize on innovative ideas!
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Every forward thinking person in this world should read this book 4 July 2012
By Louis Thomason - Published on
This is a book every forward thinking person in this world should read and use as their guidance. Instead of analyzing history, traditional political and religious concepts, and social dogma it engages the reader in the incredible creative possibilities of the mind... and the future.... anchored in some of the most important creativity of our time and validated by a continuing stream of creative ideas and thought. I have ordered copies for my son and grandsons ...

I was especially pleased to find the changes Dr. Pensak made recently included my copy. It would be helpful if the publisher could indicate the new editions in some way
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars A great guide, clearly written, by someone who actually does it 3 Jun 2009
By John Falcone - Published on
Dr. Pensak has created a really delightful text in an innovative (no pun intended)way, but what else would I expect from someone who sat on Professor Einstein's knee and was the developer of the first internet firewall along with many others! The book is large enough to cover the topic well yet small enough to assure you non-essential and boring subjects are avoided. I like this because it enables you to complete the book in a reasonable amount of time and use the rest of your time thinking about what you just read and how you can use it in your pursuits!

The book, in my opinion, is divided into three broad areas. The ideas and experiences that shaped his earliest ideas on the mechanics of innovation. Each set of principles have practical and funny examples plus a keen view into Dave Pensak's own thought process. The second group of chapters deal with the pragmatic essentials an innovator need be aware of to stay out of trouble. The third group deal with taking these principles and applying them productively by tickling new ideas in you. An 'efficient' read, you will thoroughly enjoy !
2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great entrepreneur's read . . . 17 April 2009
By James Bacchus - Published on
I read this book while trying to get an innovative product to market and found it a perfect energizer . . . a must read for the innovator and entrepreneur. In a sea of `how to' books, Pensak's book creates, using wit and witticism, a guide to everyday living . . . as an innovator.
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