The Power of the Paperfuge
Take the centrifuge. It’s a complex, expensive, and very important tool for hospitals and clinics.
Then tell a few engineers to come up with a version of that thing, but note that it shouldn’t require electricity, and should cost less than a dollar.
And a bit later, the engineers figure out how to do it.
This story is about the “paperfuge” and the power of thinking in a new way, as well as the good that can come from it.
What is something you rely on that is complex and expensive? With some classmates, come up with a list. Share your list with others in the class, and then try having a brainstorming session to see if you can come up with a different way of creating one of those things.
How would you learn whether your idea can work? Can you try it yourself? Can you find someone who can help you experiment with it?
Do you learn something new just by engaging in a brainstorming session?
One thing you might learn is that the people who created the paperfuge must have been really good at asking, “What if?”
This Simple Paper Centrifuge Could Revolutionize Global Health by WIRED on YouTube (3:20)
The NVIV (Next Vista Inspiring Video) series of posts are written by Rushton Hurley and designed to provide students and teachers with fascinating discussion prompts. For more information about how to use the variety of materials on our free site, feel free to contact us.