Academic research is often just the concept half of creating a heuretic

Is there a mapping between concept and implementation halves of heuretics and TRLs? Conception lives in the realm of TRL 1-3

Since Academia is the game where you gain status by getting attention for new knowledge the work necessary to make the knowledge impactful is devalued. Those priorities are not necessarily ‘bad’ but it does require explicit acknowledgement that there is a lot more work necessary to make a full heuretic. The creation of a heuretic has two steps - conception and implementation. The focus on conception means that academia does not create complete heuretics. Incomplete heuretics make transferring the technology out of academia deceptively hard (Manage the Transfer not the Technology.) Taking over an incomplete heuretic requires a lot more context. Context is important and underrated for knowledge transfer.

The need for context may suggest that it’s important to have whomever is taking over involved in the process during the conception. Organizations that successfully do transfers seem to do this:

A corollary to the increased need for context around a concept-only heuretic is that copying an incomplete heuretic is much harder than copying a complete one. Throwing things over the wall doesn’t work unless you have clean interfaces and only complete heuretics have clean interfaces and therefore the conception half of a heuretic can’t be thrown over a wall. This absence of clean interfaces may be a big reason why Just having the piece of literature doesn’t solve the problem! 🤯

Another corollary is that chaining together conception-only-heuretics will absolutely require talking to people in order to get enough context and that it can’t be done automatically by reading papers. (Roadmapping could be thought of as backwards-chaining together a series of conception-only heuretics)


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