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In other words, the “trick” was revealed in advance.Would you like to guess the percentage of the participants in the second group who solved the puzzle correctly?Yet participants’ performance was not improved even when they were given specific instructions to do so.That is, direct and explicit instructions to think outside the box did not help.For example, there have been some theories such as those of Schopenhauer (see his remarks about Genius) and Freud (see his remarks about Sublimation) that propose creativity is something more like a capacity provided by nature rather than one acquired or learned from the environment.Rather than disproving the myth, in other words, the experiment might instead offer evidence that creativity is an ability that one is born with, or born lacking, hence why information from the environment didn't impact the results at all.Although studying creativity is considered a legitimate scientific discipline nowadays, it is still a very young one. One of Guilford’s most famous studies was the nine-dot puzzle. Guilford was one of the first academic researchers who dared to conduct a study of creativity.
At the first stages, all the participants in Guilford’s original study censored their own thinking by limiting the possible solutions to those within the imaginary square (even those who eventually solved the puzzle).It's an interesting experiment, but the author's conclusion cannot possibly follow from the results of it.your conclusion: that the second experiment disproves the theory that thinking outside the box is useful in solving problems, is itself a fallacy.That this advice is useless when actually trying to solve a problem involving a real box should effectively have killed off the much widely disseminated—and therefore, much more dangerous—metaphor that out-of-the-box thinking spurs creativity.
After all, with one simple yet brilliant experiment, researchers had proven that the conceptual link between thinking outside the box and creativity was a myth. But you will find numerous situations where a creative breakthrough is staring you in the face.
No one, that is, before two different research teams—Clarke Burnham with Kenneth Davis, and Joseph Alba with Robert Weisberg—ran another experiment using the same puzzle but a different research procedure.