What are some apps for brainstorming

Creativity apps: ideas at the push of a button

An urgent problem is waiting for a solution or ideas for the next major innovation project are becoming scarce. Wouldn't it be nice if you could give creativity a boost at the push of a button? We looked at apps that promise just that.

Like two sides of the same coin, innovation and creativity are inextricably linked. On the one hand, creativity is required for a wealth of ideas regarding desirable features and characteristics of new products and services. Creativity is also required for their implementation in the face of scarce resources and sudden problems. On the other hand, library innovations benefit from a greater variety of methods and systematic promotion of creativity.

Key qualification creativity

In addition, creativity is one of the key qualifications of the future. This is one of the results of the expert survey carried out by Telekom and the University of St. Gallen

“Work 4.0: Megatrends of digital work of the future - 25 theses” that non-linear, i.e. creative thinking is still a skill that cannot be substituted by automation and will therefore become even more important as a qualification in the future.

Anyone who should ever solve an important problem under time pressure or, in view of the relentless pressure to innovate on libraries, had the impression that their own creativity is paralyzing, will long for creativity at the push of a button.

Promote creativity in a targeted manner

There is a wide range of ways to systematically increase creativity. One of them is the reduction of stress, which is considered the greatest killer of creativity. A stimulating work environment, which can also include the establishment of special creative rooms, or the use of creativity techniques are also part of it.

Special apps also help bring more creativity into everyday work. Your starting points include visualizations, various creativity techniques that, for example, encourage a change of perspective or the promotion of creativity-promoting behavior in everyday life. There are a variety of apps - from simple and free to extensive and paid. We tested a few of them.

Brainstorming & mind mapping

Visually oriented methods have always had their place in the field of techniques for increasing creativity. Mind mapping alone or in combination with brainstorming is one of them. Software such as Mindjet, Mindmeister or Simple Mind is known. Apps like The Brain, MindView and iMindQ even use the mind mapping principle as a basis for project management and the organization of meetings. They also offer Office integrations and drag and drop functions for integrating external files.

Trigger me calls itself the "idea machine" and goes a big step further: methods such as questioning techniques, random images and word creations are excellently processed in a modern iPad app and serve as the basis for innovative work in projects.

IdeaGrowr is ideal for quickly jotting down and further developing ideas. A series of pre-formulated questions help with the conception and the first steps on the jumps. Your own questions and notes can be added and the ideas can be shared with other applications.

Collaborative whiteboards

Online whiteboards are used in the browser, but there are often also app versions in which you can gather together with a team or group on a joint project. Working is possible both synchronously and time-shifted.

Nice examples are the Realtime Board, Mural.ly and Conceptboard. But there are still a lot of comparable and proven tools in this area:

• Scribblar (link)
• Idea Flip (Link)
• Ziteboard (Link)
• Spacedeck (link)
• ShowMe (link)
• Padlet (link)

Visual thinking

Those who like it very innovative orientate themselves towards Viz Thinkers like Sunny Brown and the Doodle Revolution. It is based on the assumption that today's language-oriented societies only have a chance to keep up with the rapid development of new technologies if people remember their natural abilities of visual perception. Doodling lifts the art of drawing from its throne and allows anyone to visualize ideas, thoughts or concepts. Apps like Paper by 53, Adobe Sketch and Sketchbook opened the way to digital scribbling for everyone. These apps are not only available for iOS, the Google Playstore also has a large selection.

Your recommendation?

Do you use apps to get your creativity going? Which ones can you recommend?

→ Authors: Andrea Brücken, Birgit Fingerle (ZBW - Leibniz Information Center for Economics)