In This Chapter
Finding and defining contradictions
Understanding the two types of contradiction
Solving contradictions by applying the 40 Inventive Principles
This chapter provides an introduction to one of the most popular TRIZ tools – the 40 Inventive Principles – and the powerful approach to understanding and solving your most difficult problems – contradictions. Contradictions are the kind of problems that most people avoid, because their resolution sounds impossible: when you have a contradiction you have a conflict; for example, ‘I want a refrigerator that holds lots of food but takes up very little space in my kitchen’. The pragmatic and apparently sensible approach is usually to pick one thing over another (big or small) or find some kind of compromise (a medium-sized refrigerator). TRIZ problem solvers say ‘No – I’m going to get everything I want and resolve the contradiction (all my food at the right temperature and a nifty kitchen)’.
Have you ever seen a problem so hard that finding a solution seems completely impossible? If so, you’ve probably been ...