I’ve often talked about the fact that there is no problem-free.  But other than making a list of the problem sets and then choosing the set of problems you’d rather have, one of the best "look at it from another angle" examples I’ve seen in a long time is the idea of a ghoti.  What’s a ghoti?  It’s another way of looking at things.  Tripped across it today over on Marketing Profs Daily Fix.  Check this out:

Ghoti’s not pronounced like it looks.  It’s actually an alternate spelling for the word "fish".  The

  • GH makes the F sound, like it does in the words lauGH or enouGH.
  • O makes the I sound, like in the word wOmen.
  • TI makes the SH sound, like in the word naTIon.

What’s it got to do with problem-solving?  Well, when you first look at ghoti no one pronounces it like "fish".  And when you first look at many problems they look like they can only be understood a certain way.  But it’s really a matter of perspective.   And in the words of Alan Kay, "perspective is worth 80 IQ points."  Want to get smarter?  Learn to look at things from a different angle…a new perspective…a ghoti.

Thanks to Paul Williams over at Marketing Profs Daily Fix for the idea.  It’s a really good one!

Problem Solving with a Ghoti