Reinventing the wheel

Sometimes people ask me what differentiates SOD and GIGA-mapping from other approaches and techniques like service design, mind-mapping and Rich Picture from Soft Systems Methodology.

For each of those neighboring fields approaches and techniques there are specific answers. Several times people have mentioned reinventing the wheel when comparing GIGA-mapping to mind mapping. This triggered me to think through two things: what does it mean to reinvent the wheel and what kind of wheel is GIGA-mapping.


(Img by Randal J, licensed under creative commons, edited by BS)


The wheel is a very old invention, and it has been with us for such a long time that it has many connotations and uses. There is a whole universe of the wheel out there and new wheels are constantly invented.


(Img by Gawrish, licensed under creative commons)


It occurs to me that reinventing the wheel is a big achievement! Standing on giants shoulders is a central idea in science. We can only dream of making a fundamental invention, the idea of the new is relative, we always work in a social context. 

Realizing this makes me feel honored instead of slightly annoyed when thinking of reinventing the wheel.

But what kind of wheel is GIGA-mapping?

I briefly produced a draft of the elements that are included and merged and forged in GIGA-mapping.


GIGAmap map_small

(Img by Birger Sevaldson licensed under creative commons)


Here is the first quick version and there is obviously much more to it to be mapped out in the next versions. But it is clear that GIGA-mapping is not only about big information rich maps but also about merging many different approaches, techniques and tools.

It occurs to me that GIGA-mapping is a multipurpose all-terrain wheel that has the potential to take you to places you did not expect existed.

More on this study of the nature of GIGA-mapping will follow.


Birger Sevaldson