Posted by: Xhyra Graf | 19 January 2007

Model 38

The Cognitive Operator Extremes Model

Another mind type model of creativity is this one, the cognitive operator extremes model. This is a model of ordinary cognitive operations

carried to extremes, of speed, accuracy, breadth, depth, and so forth. Creativity occurs when one or several ordinary cognitive operations are

thus enhanced (Petroski, 1998; Zeldin, 1983; Ward et al, 1997, 1995; Wallace and Gruber, 1989; Smith et al, 1995; for fascinating neural net

brain hardware perspective on creativity see Elman et al, 1999 and do the exercises in Plunkett and Elman, 1997).

This is hard to visualize without an example. Consider people who glance through a twenty page chapter in a minute and come away with

200 main points, named in a complicated hierarchical order, from the article. This seems like magic and certain people allow others to

believe that to be the case. It is actually a structural way of reading that is taught in certain school systems. It increases standardized test

verbal ability scores by hundreds of points, too. When such a reading ability is deployed seriously to the literature on a certain deep topic in a

field of knowledge, creativity often results. When such a skill is deployed along with several other different cognitive abilities carried to similar

extremes of performance, even more creativity results.

This model is quite close to the productivity model. It differs in its emphasis on cognitive skills and on extremes of performance that include

things beyond mere productivity. Such extremes might include, for a reading skill example, marking every 20 lines of a book with which of

the ten key concepts from a theory of creativity, a theory of political negotiation, or a theory of self organizing systems dynamics they illustrate.

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