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Thinking out of the box

thesoreon profile image Paul Susicky ・2 min read

We have all heard this sentence (or cliché?), but what does it mean?

According to old good friend wikipedia, it means to start thinking differently or unconventionally about some sort of problem, puzzle or whatever else. Simplified we should see it from other perspective.

Example!

I'll take a most common problem and i'm pretty sure you've already seen it.

The problem: "connect the dots by drawing four straight, continuous lines that pass through each of the nine dots, and never lifting the pencil from the paper."

ninedots

Okay, i see no problem in this, let's do it!

ninedotsfilledwrong

Oh, that's wrong? Yeah, they are connected, but with FIVE straight lines and i need four.

Ok, so i'll try another way! However, i don't want you to scroll five years, so we know that there is no way how to solve it with this method or might be?

Solution!

So if we think about it out of box. We should end up with solution below.

ninedotsfilledcorrectly

And that's the solution. The interesting thing is that our brain automatically created an "imaginary square" that we cannot escape, but in the reality we CAN, because there is no rule telling us to stay in some kind of square.

Btw can you find a solution(s) for this puzzle with same rules, but you can use only 3 straight lines?

Other interesting puzzles

Towers of Hanoi
Very well known Rubik's Cube
Drawing

Conclusion

In my opinion this thing is connected with learning of anything, where you have plenty of ways how to solve the specific problem. It's very important to see other's work for our best improvements, everyone has a different style of thinking so we can collaborate why someone used this method and the other one used this one.

Thanks for reading

This is my first post and i hope you liked it just a little bit! If you can please leave a comment down below. I very appreciate any kind of critism especially for my writing skills and i know about my poor vocabulary.

Posted on Nov 23 '19 by:

thesoreon profile

Paul Susicky

@thesoreon

18 years old developer from Czech republic. Love Calisthenics and Fitness.

Discussion

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I agree with you. A hugely useful tool in problem solving is identifying our assumptions and then deciding whether they're actually valid or not. I like the example of special relativity that Einstein developed early in the 20th century. At the time, there were a lot of people smart enough to figure it out, and who had worked out ideas that were pretty close, but Einstein was the only one at the time who was fearless enough to seriously propose it.