Dennis D. McDonald (ddmcd@outlook.com) is an independent consultant located in Alexandria Virginia. His services and capabilities are described here. Application areas include project, program, and data management; market assessment, digital strategy, and program planning; change and content management; social media; and, technology adoption. Follow him on Google+. He also publishes on CTOvision.com and aNewDomain.

An Inspiring New Movie about Imagination, Innovation, Science, and Engineering

By Dennis D. McDonald, Ph.D.

I was fortunate this week to attend a screening at the National Academies of the new film, Imagine It!, a work by Rudy Poe and Richard Tavener of Infinite Loop Media LLC. This 50 minute film, still in production, shows the importance of science and engineering in solving serious global challenges through innovation, imagination, and education. The version of the film I saw, introduced by Charles Vest, President of the National Academy of Engineering, is targeted at “leaders” such as adults, parents, and teachers. Other versions of the film are being developed specifically for junior high and high school students.

Young people are the real targets of the film’s messages, which include, quoting from the producers’ handout:

  • Challenges are positive opportunities for people to change the world
  • Educators and parents can win the battle for the imagination of our youth
  • Connect science and engineering with creativity and imagination
  • Imagine a more perfect world and then get involved in making that happen

At first I was skeptical about the film. I was concerned the audience was in for almost an hour of “talking heads” interspersed with comedic interludes.

It’s not like that at all. In fact, the serious messages of the film are communicated by an extremely well edited and organized series of comments and interviews with established professionals as well as young scientists and engineers.

There’s very little “fluff” in this tightly knit film. My immediate impression, which I communicated to the producers in the lively post-screening Q&A session, was that it is a pleasure to see a film that contains so many ideas of substance, including:

  • The need for innovation
  • The power of big ideas
  • The practical benefits of science and engineering
  • The role of technology in solving big global problems
  • The need to revolutionize education
  • The connection between art and science
  • Creativity as a process

The thought, care, and attention that have gone into the production and organization of this film are clear. I hope its various versions get wide distribution and exposure!

Via YouTube, here’s a sampling from the film:

Text copyright (c) 2009 by Dennis D. McDonald

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