Monday, December 08, 2008

Lose that idea

In 1956, the Webster's Dictionary came out with a great idea. Or so several people there thought - an "Assemble it yourself" dictionary! The idea was to somehow save costs. Maybe back then, the bindery process cost more than it does now.

Anyhow, I'd wager that they didn't sell very many. I happened upon a box full of never-assembled pages in Heather's parents' basement (as we were moving them to a smaller place last summer). They had inherited it from her grandparents. No one ever assembled the thing. And now it's going into a recycling bin.

Your takeaway? What idea have you been working on that should not see the light of day? Be ruthless and kill it off.

I have to mention our friends at GM. They lost $38 billion in 2007. Not enough people there were saying "no" to bad ideas. (By the way, Ford only lost $2.7 billion and Chrysler $3 billion in 2007.) And now it may be too late for them. Or at least it's too late for the how-ever-many thousands of motor industry employees who will lose jobs because their bosses didn't say no.


richies said...

Th do it yourself dictionary makes more sense than the Cadillac Escalade Hybrid.

An Arkie's Musings

Paul Merrill said...

Totally agreed with that!!

The Lone Beader said...

Interesting! I'm thinking of designing a beading kit like that. You think anyone will want attempt it?? ;)

Jenny said...

Assemble the dictionary yourself?? Silly idea. I use a dictionary to find the words I don't know, not the ones I do!
I like the cover though. Maybe you should keep that. Frame it as a bit of art.

Paul Merrill said...

Good idea, Jenny!

bc said...

OK - this post is several days old, so I don't know who will see this comment ... but ...
My Mom collected the sections for this dictionary each week at the grocery store (the real leather cover - with cardboard 'inner' - was free).
This behemoth of a book sat in our 'front room' for years & years and was our "source" for many many things - including settling Scrabble arguments :-)

Thanx for the memories, Pablo!