It’s often stated that breakthroughs can not be scheduled. I’m here to explain how this really is twentieth century thinking. The statement assumes that this word “breakthrough” is unambiguously defined. This blog post questions that assumption and offers one step-by-step help guide to achieving a breakthrough. My focus is on batteries, but with just a few tweaks, you can adapt this for other areas also.
Let me start with proclaiming that during the last century there seemed to be a feeling which a breakthrough was believed to be when, for instance, you find a whole new material for li ion battery containing, say, higher energy or maybe safer or anything. Those sorts of breakthroughs then browse through the traditional rigmarole of publications, licensing, technology transfer, peer appreciation, awards, products and the rest of the boring items that takes twenty years to obtain settled. In the age of Twitter, Facebook, Uber, and, Snapchat, this sort of length of time is made for the folks unwilling to look to new ways of achieving breakthroughs. When you are part of this “old” club, It is best to go forward. The following information will probably be of no use to you personally.
But exactly what is a breakthrough anyway? In terms of I understand there is not any body that proclaims something a breakthrough (a Pope for science?). And is also there really this as being an eureka moment? Although you may have one, it will probably be annually before you reproduce the experiment and have every one of the approaches to spot to prove it. And when the breakthrough should certainly be considered a product, it will take you 10 more years to scale it to make it.
But what if there have been a respected publication that really called something a breakthrough. And then it was validated and verified by other publications saying the same thing? That appears to be in step with the scientific method, would it not?
So, for that purposes of advancing, let us define a breakthrough as just that: It can be proclaimed as such by multiple publication. And to assist us move forward, publications will be broadly considered a peer reviewed journal article, or possibly a newspaper, or even a blog, or possibly a tweet etc. i.e., so long as the term breakthrough as well as your work show on the web somewhere, you happen to be golden. This article will assist you to get there.
Step 1: Before you begin the research, try not to read the literature. The peer-reviewed literature is full of things which were tried before. In the event you read them carefully, then what you are actually doing is definitely not new. Consider this mantra (courtesy of NBC when they were promoting reruns in the 90s): “If you haven’t seen it before, its new to you”.
Step Two: While you start the study, understand that facts just get in the manner. The literature is stuffed with facts (hence Step 1). In 1492 everyone thought the globe was flat; until Columbus took to the seas.1 We all thought it was round, until Tom Friedman proved it was flat. Till The Matrix arrived, we thought gravity was forever binding us to the earth. Breakthroughs happen when these laws are broken and it also requires a bold person to visit where no person went before. To paraphrase Marsellus Wallace from Pulp Fiction, you could feel a small sting once in a while when it appears as if you will be violating faraday’s law. Those are the facts f*ing together with you. f* facts.
Step 3: Now you did your research and ignored everything, it can be time for you to focus. Try and focus on a newly-discovered material, or atleast one that has been forgotten for some time. This is an important step. Around you can go after Steps 1 and 2, the greater studied the content, the harder it is actually to prove to yourself that you are violating each of the famous laws simply because you are charting a fresh path as opposed to screwing up. It’s so much easier to think this if it’s a new material. Graphene is useful (not as battery power material, but remember Step 2). So may be fullerenes (granted they can be old, but it feels like its time to revisit them). Graphite, however, could possibly be bad; except if you intend to use it within a new way; whereby it may be good. Lithium metal is obviously good; however, if you go this route you will need to get religion on Steps 1 and 2.
Step 4: As you start getting data on the new invention, revisit Step Two. Revisit many times, it, specially when you sense down.
Step 5: Time to start writing the paper. Always state that your invention is superior to Li-ion. The only way to get anyone excited is usually to point out that. This could sound hard, but it is not. There are several metrics that ought to be satisfied for industrial battery manufacturer, including, energy, power, charge time, cost, life, safety, low temperature and high temperature stability. If you think that you might have an issue that looks better in every one of those, you are carrying out a lot better than Li-ion. Pricing is the 55dexhpky one if everything else fails. You could always safely say something like “our preliminary cost estimates suggest that the battery will cost less than something-small/kWh”. Other end of your spectrum is energy, which is the hardest. If you decrease this path you really need Step 6.
Step 6: Always confuse energy with power. It’s completely appropriate to state “Our pixie dust battery can discharge an aspect of 10 faster than Li-ion, therefore EVs based upon pixie dust have a longer driving range comparable to Li-ion EVs” or “our batteries can be charged in 5 minutes, providing more energy than any battery known to man or aliens. Over a separate note, we simply appear to get one cycle from the battery; we believe it has something connected with aliens”
Step 7: The paper is ready in fact it is a chance to submit. Never send the paper to some journal that focuses on publishing papers in batteries. This will obtain your paper in the hands of traditional battery-types who remember past history, understand what works and what does not, and also a strong scientific foundation inside the field. Such knowledge is definitely an impediment for your out-of-the-box thinking. Remember Step Two. Always pick a journal that is certainly disconnected from your battery field.
Step 8: Together with the paper popping out, it is actually time to get prepared for a press release. Remember that the press wishes to hear that this is a breakthrough. So despite what the peer-reviewed paper proves, ensure you call it a breakthrough on the press release. Do not forget that Steve Jobs failed to really have a working iPhone as he announced it around the globe, and stated that they would ship in half a year. When it is adequate for Steve, I’m sure it is actually good enough for yourself. So don’t be shy in telling the press how great 18650 li ion battery will probably be. Make certain you give interviews to numerous publications. Remember our concept of a breakthrough: you will need multiple publications to say it is one. So target many outlets.
Step 9: Your day has arrived; the publications are out; and you will have spend the higher section of the day googling you to ultimately find out how far the word has spread. This is basically the day if you may hear skepticism (some contained within the articles yet others in emails addressed for your needs). Remember Step Two. Remind yourself how the iPhone had many critics (e.g, the proximity sensor will never work. Who may wish to browse the net over a phone anyway? Atleast they got the first problem right!). When it worked out for Steve Jobs, that could figure out for you too.