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Idea Lab Origin

The term "Idea Lab" is commonly used, but here we owe the reference to Tim Urban in his excellent book "What's Our Problem", where Tim defines an "idea lab" as the opposite of an "echo chamber" -- it's a place where ideas get challenged, and everyone can contribute to the goal of clarity and understanding. 

The core concept is that, if you were to graph it, the "what do you think" would go on the horizontal access. The "how you think" is the ladder part on the vertical access, where the ladder has four rungs.

The top rung is "thinking like a scientist". Ideas are vigorously tested and debated.


One rung below that is "thinking like a sports fan". We all play by the rules and want good competition, but we each have our favourite.


The next rung down is "thinking like an attorney". We're arguing two different sides and loath to concede ground, but the system still works.


The bottom rung is "thinking like a zealot", where we cling to our ideas with religious zeal. An attack against our idea is an attack against us.


We take the time to summarise that concept of "idea lab" here because it is central to our culture. At Kind we want to bring new ideas to life, and this is the expected mindset we should all take as we work together. We may not always get it right, but when we don't, this is a handy place to point to as a reminder!

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