And certainly, every new development paves the way for even more astounding technologies.
But often, the most revolutionary developments aren’t a result of accepting and building on those of the past. Rather, they come from challenging and interrogating assumptions about how things work and why they are the way they are.
The greatest thinkers of pretty much every era, from Johannes Gutenberg and Albert Einstein to, more recently, Elon Musk, have quite a bit in common with most third graders in terms of how they approach problems. That is, they ask “Why?” quite a lot.
This method of problem-solving is called first principle thinking. It postulates that complex problems should be broken down into fundamental pieces (axioms), and then rebuilt from the ground up.
We recently spoke with inventor and Chief Innovation Officer at 9n Feisal Adams, who uses ClickUp to apply a first principle approach to developing, among other things, brain-computer interfaces (BCIs), which allow the human brain to interface with an external device.
Or, as I like to call it, mind control!
- Tell us about 9n!
- I imagine you and your team must juggle a lot to tackle something so ambitious. What ClickUp features help your accomplish all this?
- What tools, if any, do you integrate with ClickUp?
- How do you use ClickUp to push your projects forward?
- About how many hours a week do you save using ClickUp?
- How would you say ClickUp has improved your work and life?
- What advice do you have for others looking to streamline their productivity?
Tell us about 9n!
Simply put, 9N develops artificial intelligence and technology solutions in and for businesses.
To go into a bit of detail, our vision is to improve lives by evolving biotechnology through identifying biological factors and conditions and combining with technology to alleviate them.
So a practical example of this mission is leveraging technology to create better opportunities for people with disabilities and autism. We also look at the implications and effects of tech on topics such as bullying and mental health to try to create more equitable systems.
The end goal in these examples is to use tech to provide affected individuals with the tools for everyday life and encourage inclusion within society by making people more able, and thereby empowering them.
I imagine you and your team must juggle a lot to tackle something so ambitious. What ClickUp features help your accomplish all this?
The ones I can create, which is just about anything! ClickUp is so cool because I can create any interaction I need, so there are too many favorites for me to choose just one or two.
One recent example of how I used ClickUp to streamline an otherwise time-consuming process is with ClickUp’s Form view and Automations. I created a form in ClickUp and added a button to our website linking to the form.
Then, I built a ClickUp Automation that sent an instant custom reply to anyone who submitted a form based on the information they provided. It used information like location to say “I hope the weathers nice in [location].”
I was able to do this for every form field, so the automated reply would include name, project information, contact info, you name it. All this made the reply feel personal and clever, not like your standard bot reply.
Now if one uses their imagination, there are so many inputs one could ask for that could help build a more intuitive personal response. 💭
What tools, if any, do you integrate with ClickUp?
Email is honestly the only thing I’ve integrated with ClickUp.
But I’m finding that ClickUp itself can do pretty much anything I need. So I’m really trying to build internally and I don’t see much of a need for many integrations in my workflows.
As ClickUp adds more and more native features, I think integrations will phase out not just for me, but for a lot of users.
How do you use ClickUp to push your projects forward?
I think the example I just gave about using Form view plus Automations is a great example.
Really, anything to do with leveraging ClickUp’s awesome Automations and creating complex interactions based on open models.
Having a platform that’s as customizable and flexible as ClickUp makes it so there are no constraints on how I can do things better and smarter.
About how many hours a week do you save using ClickUp?
Can I say 100? I mean, that’s how it feels. Using ClickUp to automate things that would otherwise take my time, like responding to emails, saves more time than I can calculate!
And this time saved lets me triple my efforts on other projects that really require brainpower.
How would you say ClickUp has improved your work and life?
Its revolutionary first principle approach has allowed us to create a hub for task management, client management–everything, really.
That is, ClickUp is totally customizable and lets us get so granular. So you can break down any problem, challenge, project, whatever, into little fundamental pieces and then build a system that encompasses it all in ClickUp.
Being able to do this for pretty much any challenge, business or otherwise, relieves a lot of stress. And potential roadblocks are easy to navigate since everything is planned out to a tee.
What advice do you have for others looking to streamline their productivity?
High level, ClickUp allows you to accumulate many into one: many projects, ideas, disciplines, you name it.
So with the right tags or labels, you can create a hotspot of activity that’s both organized and scaleable.
Evan is a Content Coordinator at ClickUp, where he’s usually absorbed in composing copy making efficiencies more efficient. When weather permits, he can be found jogging around Cleveland. When it doesn’t, he can be found somewhere warm painting, cooking, and consuming all things horror- and fantasy-related.