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on 22 July 2017
Really did not get on well with this book. At the start sounds like a solution for all problems, in the end leaves you with little.
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on 14 April 2011
TRIZ for Engineers. Wiley, 2011. Karen Gadd.

TRIZ (the theory of inventive problem solving) represents a short-cut to previous experience in problem solving. TRIZ has many champions including Karen Gadd. An on-going challenge to TRIZ, despite its champions' efforts, is that although many people have gone through training courses a good proportion of these same people don't use the tools of TRIZ and as a result are not able to develop their skills in TRIZ. Karen has spent many years facilitating TRIZ sessions and training up a host of people in the use of TRIZ. This experience has been revealed in her book, TRIZ for Engineers.

I have just spent the last two days reading the book from cover to cover. It is an engaging read. My interest stemmed from having been a TRIZ toolkit fan, user and creativity facilitator for several years. Karen has produced an excellent book on the subject and has used over 160 cartoons to illustrate many of the principles that are used in TRIZ to assist in problem solving. The cartoons really help in providing a temporary diversion of attention that helps to enforce the points being made while also being interesting and encouraging a thirst to find out more about the toolkit that is TRIZ.

As well as the excellent use of cartoons, I was also struck by the value of the bad solutions park to encourage a group to get going in an ideas session and feel comfortable in getting ideas out into the open. Karen also emphasises the need to satisfy multiple criteria in the development of a solution (delivering both the primary and secondary benefits) .

I have very few criticisms - some of the images and tables are too small, but the author has a web site that does provide access to a number of these and it is not a major issue. Although the author is able to cite case-studies where TRIZ has been the toolkit that has aided innovation, several of the tools are described using examples from the history of innovation where the individuals concerned did not use TRIZ. The toolkit that is TRIZ is powerful enough not to need examples from other domains.

Overall the book is an excellent description and manual for TRIZ. It is accessible and the cartoons enable and encourage engagement. I thoroughly recommend TRIZ for Engineers by Karen Gadd to you.

Peter Childs.
Professorial Lead in Engineering Design, Imperial College London.
14th April 2011.
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on 13 April 2011
TRIZ does not fall into the Keep It Simple Stupid set of management consultancy methodologies. TRIZ isn't that complicated either, but it does require study. This book, written by an enthusiast, but also a practitioner, is meant for those who want a good look at the TRIZ engine before buying. Karen Gadd isn't selling her own "apply-to-everything" toolkit, rather she's helping to explain something that worked well both inside one of the worst innovation environments, the former Soviet Union, and some of the best, e.g. Rolls Royce. This book sits on the path between knowing TRIZ exists and then getting stuck in to some formal training. It's also a great read. For some the cartoons might grate, but for me they worked, helping me realise that TRIZ is actually great fun - making a better world by thinking creatively in a structured way.Clean Business Cuisine: Now and Z/Yen
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on 20 June 2013
I'm a chartered mechanical engineer and I've used TRIZ for about ten years in various engineering and design environments. I think it's an excellent read, very accessible for people learning about TRIZ and for people like me who want a hefty reference tome packed with examples and ideas. The illustrations are colourful and fun throughout the book, make it really lively and they really do a great job of embedding the principles and tools into your subconscious. TRIZ is much more than just the 40 principles, which are covered thoroughly, but the book really supplies you with a clear description of the whole range of tools in the TRIZ toolkit (again with lots of examples). I don't tend to use the whole TRIZ process on projects as I tend to run 1-2 day workshops with engineers and scientists and pick tools from the toolkit that are most relevant to the problem that we're trying to solve; the book is a very handy reference for flicking through and choosing our approach to each problem.

So, for engineers, designers and students, this is an excellent book that is applicable to every corner of your work. There's so much info on TRIZ on the internet, but save yourself the confusion of wading through it all and get this high quality, clear and thorough book.

If you've searched for this book I guess you already know what TRIZ is, but I'd just like to highlight that it is a range of tools born from the analysis of millions of patents - this is an engineering toolkit designed to exploit you and your colleagues creativity in the most effective way, enabling you to approach problems from many more directions than if you didn't have the tools. It is based on the analysis of a huge body of inventive knowledge within science and engineering, it is not management tool or `another creativity tool'. Enjoy!
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on 9 December 2011
Karen Gadd is an excellent teacher of TRIZ and a truly lovely person. She has proved with this book that she is also a talented author.

TRIZ "The Theory of Inventive Problem Solving" is in its first iteration, a toolkit for developing solutions to engineering problems. Its principles can be adapted to other areas of endeavour.

This book contains more TRIZ material in a more accessible style than any other TRIZ book I have encountered-and that is no small number. There are now two "Must Have" TRIZ books- this, and "And Suddenly the Inventor Appeared" which has, to be fair, always been there.

Karen's style is informal, and highly informative, light years away from the many unreadable dry as dust texts you will find, although there are other fine books out there. On an information per £ basis, this knocks all other TRIZ books into a cocked hat.

When you "get" TRIZ, it is something of a lightbulb moment. However you use the TRIZ methods, it will greatly improve your creativity. The style of this book should endear it to a wider audience, and its style should, for a practising Engineer, make it more appealing to your boss, helping to promulgate this valuable toolset still further.

There is much in the library of TRIZ books that is highly academic, and not necessarily what a practising engineer needs. At the end of "Jonathan Livingston Seagull", Fletcher is trying to exaplin the idea of the "Great Gull" to a group of student flyers. The response is "this doesn't sound like a rule for a loop."; well, the rule for a loop is probably what the Engineer wants- it's certainly what I want, and in this book, I believe you can find the rule for your loop quite readily.

In Karen's book, like her training courses, she takes the TRIZ theories, and gives them to you in ways you can apply immediately.

Highly recommended.
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on 9 April 2011
I liked TRIZ for Engineers. As a practicing engineer for 20 years, and as a student of TRIZ for five years, I have read a wide range of text on classical TRIZ and higher levels of TRIZ approaches used in inventive problem solving. The book presents real engineering problems in short form scenarios and through case studies that include detailed notes on how to use a range of TRIZ tools to generate solutions. The example problems are engineering based, but less industrial focused, so the examples have a wide application to the engineering market and technologist new to the basic TRIZ concepts.

The book offers problem solving maps and algorithms that illustrate how the TRIZ tools presented in the chapters can combine to form larger algorithms. The solution maps present through out the chapters flow through the early phases of developing a problem statement, identifying which TRIZ tools fit the problem scenario and onward to developing and applying solutions. The book also offers color figures and tables, which compliment the text as it illustrates how TRIZ is used to model systems and analyze functions. Thematic cartoons are included, as the author notes to bring some levity to the educational process. In my opinion, the cartoons present a physical contradiction as a reader, as they both add and distract from the text and the more formal diagrams and figures.

The author emphasizes that TRIZ is a set of tools, which can offer more than one solution to a problem and that all solutions have some level of merit based on the users needs. This perspective is well supported in the book's classical TRIZ modeling examples. The later chapters include examples of the Traditional TRIZ 76 Standard Solutions, Substance-Field modeling, and ARIZ, which adds clarity to modeling problems with higher-level TRIZ tools. These advanced concepts discussions are supported with case study based examples. The book offers illustrations of blank worksheets that students can use as a reference to help analyze and execute the book's algorithms while problem solving. There are also chapters describing how the TRIZ concepts can be used to analyzing trends and inventing with TRIZ beyond the basic problem solving.

The best part of the book from my perspective is the text-based descriptions of creating a functional analysis model and developing solutions through trimming and substitution of the functional models. I complement Karen Gadd on her efforts to bring TRIZ to engineers, and will recommend the book to TRIZ novices and more experienced inventive problem solvers.
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on 15 April 2015
You will not get such a simple and clever application of Triz from any other book. Very, very practical book for Engineers who really want to use it, or even to test the value of Triz when applied correctly. Unfortunately, I have seen other books from other authors that do Triz an injustice, by under or over cooking it. If this is your experience too, then give yourself a second chance with Triz applied correctly with this book by the author who simplified the application of Triz successfully, and has tremendous practical experience in applying it. Standard application of Triz also covered in the book for comparison. Full of amusing and informative cartoons for easy reading. Not necessary but is more "ideal".
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on 14 October 2014
I read this ahead of attending a TRIZ course developed by the author. The book is a good introduction, but I think it would be difficult to begin applying TRIZ without also attending the course. TRIZ is a toolkit and this is a very useful introduction to the tools, due to the toolkit nature of TRIZ, it is difficult to put a prescriptive method together to apply the tools. Consequently while there are a lot of examples in the book it does jump around a little as it introduces the tools.
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on 18 October 2016
It's an amazing book. I love its pictures and clear explanation.
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on 15 June 2015
Excellent book
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