Creativity in our lives, on and off line

When we screened Screenagers to employees at Pixar, the organizer Guido Quaroni, V.P. of Software R&D at Pixar (and also the voice Guido in Cars) and I talked about their recruitment efforts. He told me that the hardest people to find for Pixar were good story writers, animators, designers...  not programmers. The creatives, however, he said ... "Ahhh, man, that is hard."

In a Common Sense Media report they found that only 3% of what kids do online is actually content creation, i.e. making videos, music with programs like Garage Band. This not surprising because it's hard work to be creative (Elizabeth Gilbert talks beautifully about this in her TED Talk). The brain of teens, like us. gets seduced into relaxation through entertainment.

I've been shocked that my kids' teachers never give homework that involves using tech for creating. I'd love to see homework that requires actions like listening to music that ties into history and then have them try to compose a funny bit on their own using something like Garage Band. They have so much homework on the computer why not have part of the homework really focus on using it creatively?

Questions for Tech Talk Tuesday this week are about creativity:

  • Are you doing things online that are creative?  How about offline?
  • Do you feel that making Snapchat stories takes creativity?
  • How about building worlds in Minecraft?
  • Is there a creative aspect to Pokemon Go?
  • There is a new tool on Facebook called Facebook Live, how can that be used creatively?
  • Can you estimate how much time you spend online passively viewing other people's creations?