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Sunday, 11 March 2018

He stole my idea....

Hatake Kakashi, the Copy-Ninja of Konoha a.k.a. Rokudaimei Hokage-sama

He Stole My Idea...

I bet most people around me have said this to me, or about me, or even I would have said this to someone

I was motivated to write this post by an intense discussion with a few Juniors at our college regarding a Business Research Plan to be patented, I felt that were getting nervous and had a feeling that I may end up copying their plan. 
But guys, don't worry I follow a principle which is, "Don't Be Evil".
We're Proud to Be Original of Ourselves!
It is my code of conduct and though it may appear in a few instances that the concept we work on might be relevant to yours actually we're all connected and everything in this world is interdependent and thoughts of discussion do start the subconscious memory to crank the engine of productivity! so just chill and read a few of things that I do to be calmer....
And yes even I've been in the same situation and its good to feel possessive & insecure, its the product of thousands of years of evolutions (seriously, its in our DNA). So congratulations! you're human.

Research is an addiction and just as traditional addictions happen to go, it does have its own faults that are the theft of ideas and it may not really happen but there are a lot of emotional influences that such thoughts leave on your productivity.

Developing ideas and concepts isn't an easy job, the dedication and its okay to feel insecure while discussing the ideas and concepts with others!

I bet even Nikola Tesla would've felt tremors of insecurities while dealing with Thomas Edison, recognized as the inventor of the electric bulb & owner of then Tech-Giant, General Electric. 
So here are a few things I personally do to make sure that I play safely in this Game of Ideas, though it may not be full proof at least it adds a little peace of mind to my brain that's struggled too hard for producing this output.

Get it documented!

I'm a particularly religious person and this is kind of a ritual I perform before committing myself to a project or adding any person to an existing project.

The documentation could be in the form of Agreements such as Non-Disclosure, Deed of Partnership, et cetera (seriously Its too much but worth the effort)

Having documented your scopes and rights give you a firm foundation and sense of confidence that there won't be any kind of fraud with you and this ensures that even you cannot betray the committed members, its simple!

Also, it feels really cools to be able to talk law and act like a lawyer preparing contracts and agreement drafts, I personally do this for almost all of my projects. Without this, I don't get the confidence and also it forces me to act and work on the project even if I there is a lot of drain on the motivation to work. Just think of it, whenever you see that piece of paper lying around, you'll be reminded that there's a task that you need to complete forehand.

Get Professional

Instead of bumping in and emitting radio waves corresponding to a patentable concept in the public, try the professional approach...
Prepare a research Proposal involving all terms, scopes, investments, returns, risks, et cetera and instead of approaching a person directly just send a formal email expressing a few parts of the concept that you intend to discuss with the person but ensure that you don't give off the complete concept! unless you're confident Else all you'll have is the Babaji's Thullu! and later deal with an emotional disaster.

A social media study research proposal email concisely discussed a few points but not everything

Why should you email forehand? 

That's a good question, email is considered as a professional mode of communication and unlike phone calls or instant messaging services like WhatsApp, Facebook, Linkedin, etc. the conversations there can be recorded and printed in a tangible media if required, this provides a lot of confidence in dealing with such thoughts! So even if someone later steals your idea you can at least rip them off by showing the timestamp in the email unless they've replied to you with negation and settled the claim.

Once you've discussed the concept with the parties you intend to partner with, draw an informal conclusion report about the points discussed and don't forget the role of each party during the meeting, the roles could be like discloser & receiver and make sure to get their signature to conclude the minutes of the meeting.
After the meeting is concluded, I would highly recommend that you mail all the stakeholders with the minutes of the meeting and also attach the note that you initially signed...
See there, it is being printed from an APPLE Printer 

All these methods provide a lot of satisfaction to the brain and may also boost your productivity.
These procedures might give a little structure to our projects, collaborations & relations with other people but the most important factor that governs the universe of human interaction is "Trust". If you trust in the existence of a system then it'll exist else everything according to science is evolved from 0 (seriously, how is 0+0=1! Daaaarvin?). We humans are fragile and often end up messing up systems most probably due to lack of communication, understanding or an improper attitude.

Next time, believe that all people are good, helping in nature. The worst part about learning to get patents and research works published is that people aren't that open to discuss these matters. It is my personal experience, I discussed with people, professionals on Linkedin, friends, and acquaintances from top institutes such as IITs before I landed with the correct person who guided me. The problem is that they'll inform you about the process and even go out of the way to help but on both ends, there is mistrust and fear of being deceived. The guide thinks that there may be a loss to the person receiving or the person may not be comfortable to discuss the concept & so avoids getting deep into the roots while the student/person thinks that there may be possible deception. This is the irony of human interactions, even if you want to help you cannot. But! humans are smart and have always had innovative solutions to their problems, even the oldest civilization is known to man had devised contracts and documentation procedures to aid their operations.  

I once attended a very inspiring TED talk (virtually via YouTube 😉) by Amal Kasser, The Muslim On the Airplane and the takeaway quote which I always remember is (a bit modified due to my limited cognitive abilities).

To Go beyond Anything we ever knew and anything we ever feared, it Takes 2 things
1. The elephant who offers Mint! and 2. the one who takes it
Also while interviewing a few delegates for our BE Project, I realized that being open to people is a good policy and it is extremely critical on how you maintain it. And People will go out of their way to help you out (it is our ancestral trait that we retain). I remember that a BIM expert from UK was willing to spare time from her busy work schedule and even try waking up early in the morning to compensate the 5 hour difference between India and UK so that we could have a Skype discussion. This enough of an evidence of the generosity and helping nature of most people, yet a few have tainted our minds with the fear of getting fooled.

So I hope that this post might have ignited a few wooden logs in your mind and heart, but please take a serious note that I am just a student like most of you'll (I know it because I receive the analytics) and anything written here is just a suggestion and may not be accepted as a legal advice. Do consult a lawyer in case you've been Taken down by someone!

In an article I read, I was extremely convinced to hire an attorney to write the patent documents and claims for you instead of you getting into it and loosing much of the benefits you that could have extracted from it. I'd love to listen from you'll about your experiences discussing ideas with other people, we love brainstorming we're a group of students like the Sannins of Konoha, always plotting for new adventures in this information & technology driven world of today. So we'd love to listen to your story, go ahead we kept some space down below!
Also a side note, I've used the image of Hatake Kakashi just because he's portrayed as the best copy ninja and not because he has stolen my idea. Think of it to be some sort of click bait for the Otakus out there...

Thank You very Much For Reading..
As Always, Keep It Halal!

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