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Basic ParaMind Theory

ParaMind is the first of the generative brainstorming programs written for the computer that goes beyond random word jumbling, flow-charting, or asking the user questions relating to their subject. By "generative" it is meant a program that produces new ideas from your idea, not a program that gives popular associations like a thesaurus or probes you with endless questions. ParaMind is the result of long investigation into how to create ideas by computer-human interaction, and ideas in its theory can be shown going back hundreds of years in philosophy.

The largest problem encountered is to get the computer to understand the complexity of word relationships. Failure in this area produces output that isn't grammatically correct, and if it is, the words are not in semantic context with each other, so they don't make sense anyway. Further study of word relationships in language usually doesn't produce interesting software for anyone but a few universities, and these programs have nothing to do with brainstorming. Also, anyone with recent experience using Microsoft Word can see how inaccurate and annoying such features can be, when the program tries to capitalize letters not meant to be capitalized and points out "grammar errors" that aren't errors at all.

With ParaMind, the user's work is always in context, and can be easily made grammatically correct, with features such as a common replace function, when it is not. All the Word Categories in ParaMind are reusable, so you don't have to type in new categories each time you use ParaMind. These are all faults found in other brainstorming programs.

ParaMind works by replacing only one or two words in your idea-sentence with words that are the same part of speech and even the same subject matter, tense, class, etc. You can then replace another word in the sentence for even more new ideas. You take out a noun to replace it with another noun, or you take out an adjective to replace it with another adjective. You can do complex searches of the database to locate related word chains to make new ideas appear fast and yet be related to your subject matter.

If the user could predict the results, he wouldn't need the program in the first place. With ParaMind, you can select word categories that are configured to fit into your own sentences. You scan through the word categories to see which category is best suited for your ideas.

ParaMind is also geared for those who want a hard copy, or a paper trail in their pursuit of their topic. No matter what idea you are after, you can work with that idea by typing in some of your own word categories, and then using the existing ParaMind categories to fill out the parts of speech that aren't specific to your idea. It can expand grammatically any idea with all its avenues, and you can make a hard copy to index that exploration when you don't have a computer nearby.

ParaMind can also help the user just find one idea, and splice that idea into pre-existing text, by using the "Replace Highlighted Word" feature.

ParaMind is an editor that lets the reader write out a entence or two of their idea and then expands that idea in any direction desired by the choice of the Word Categories.

This is how ParaMind helps you brainstorm your ideas. You can add your own Word Categories to the database with the simple "Category Add" feature. ParaMind also provides hundreds of word categories which the reader can merge into his sentences.

With ParaMind, you will be able to take an idea that was only a sentence and in five minutes come up with pages of information related to your idea. You can then easily export the ideas to your word processor and edit and print the results.

Using ParaMind means using the hidden properties of words. It means interacting words in ways never before thought of. The computer now becomes a brainstorming tool that creates usable output, not just a file cabinet or graphics tool. Now we are on the verge of using the computer as a tool that helps anyone explore and expand ideas. ParaMind involves learning a new technique to explore your ideas, and by learning this new technique you learn a way to explore avenues that no one has ever thought of before.

The merge routine concept in brainstorming was created to solve a simple problem: if words are segments of thought, and our library equals the interaction of these segments of thought, then how could more ideas be generated? The answer is simply by working on new interactions of words. The merge technique is ultimately the primary technique for re- interacting words with each other.

To merge simply means uniting or combining things. The merge concept of thinking is possibly one of our next major ideas. If our dictionary is a collection of words which are the units of ideas, and our library contains the contents of the dictionary organized in different intelligible ways, then there could be more books written which would simply be our dictionary's words organized in different intelligible ways. By working with the interactions of words we can find all manner of new ideas if we simple exhaust the interactions of words in ways that make sense.

We can further illustrate this with the fact that some floppy disc drive terminology was already present with us when Edison invented the phonograph. At that time someone could logically have seen the idea of the personal computer. We are of the opinion that in some sweep of imagination some brave soul stood forth and said, "You know, one day they will be able to write books on that thing, and have the rolls play back the books and move a mechanism that writes their contents on paper!" The ideas frequently come many decades before the fact. And the new ideas can almost always be stated in words from our own dictionary (or in combinations of the old parts of words such as suffixes and prefixes).

With the program of ParaMind, creative individuals, whether they be scientists, teachers, artists, business executives or social workers, can now start to seriously experiment with thinking augmented by their computer's power. Since all future ideas are represented by language, it could be said that by sophisticated new uses of language we will be able to find these new ideas.

This is where linguistic knowledge comes in. Linguistics is simply the science of language. We must be able to use linguistic rules to even get at sentences that make sense, let alone have any value. The easiest way to do this in computer brainstorming with the merge concept. The merge concept in brainstorming allows us to produce volumes of meaningful and grammatically correct output (with simple efficient editing where needed).

ParaMind can also be used by scientists at any level because anything can be typed onto the editor and the word categories can contain anything as well. Symbol, word, phrase, or number; anything that can be typed can be stored and re-used. ParaMind becomes a spreadsheet for ideas. ParaMind can do more for the deeply creative thinker than any other brainstorming product on the market. It will also provide brainstorming on ideas for making money, engineering, business planning, or anything else.

The thinker without ParaMind is stuck at the thinking speed of their own associations. They may have a library of books to help them, maybe even a CD-Rom and a modem on their computer, but they are still restricted to how fast they can type or how fast they can talk into a tape recorder. That is it.

Higher speeds of association are now possible because now we have the copy-merge concept of brainstorming. For instance, one scientist could merge together concepts in such sciences as electronics, industrial engineering, botany, and organic chemistry to form a totally new approach to supplying the needs of a technologically advanced society. Through skill in ParaMind we may arrive at these sciences in a few decades, totally saving us from any further degradation of the natural environment. Today, with the computer, we can discover new and un-named concepts but only if creativity shows us how. A new idea must first at least be named -- and that is a most important step. ParaMind helps the user by augmenting their ideas with possible idea developments. Everything in ParaMind is customizable therefore its limits are only your own.

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