My brand-spanking-new employer, Improving Enterprises, had a guest speaker yesterday. Luke Hohmann of Enthiosys led us through one of their latest Innovation Games (he's written a book by that same title), called Buy a Feature. You can try it free right now while it's in beta.
These games are particularly fascinating to anyone who's ever been involved in developing a product. Based on years of market research, including the contributions of data-munching, big-forehead university types, they serve to get people involved in the kind of face-to-face interaction that often goes missing in today's business processes.
Of course normally the exercises are run in person -- usually by a trained facilitator -- but the web version of Buy a Feature was created at the behest of a rather large company whose sheer numbers and geographic distribution made such a meeting less than feasible. The result is a peek into the process for those of us who had heretofore never been exposed to such creative genius.
Bear in mind that the current implementation is a bit rough, but it does give a taste of the kind of collaboration that the game encourages.
This probably won't end up in the main news feed, but I'm finally online. I'm looking forward to contributing to the greater good here, and making this place a little homier in the coming months.