Home > Business Innovation, Collaborative Innovation, Participatory Design, Visual Thinking > Gamestorming – XPLANE’s Dave Gray talks about his new book

Gamestorming – XPLANE’s Dave Gray talks about his new book

Dave Gray of XPLANE has a new book out titled Gamestorming: A Playbook for Innovators, Rulebreakers, and Changemakers – a book that he has co-authored with Sunni Brown and James Macanufo.

Gamestorming is a book about creating an environment for creativity and innovation in organizations through playing team-oriented games. I currently have the book on order, so I can write about it yet. But here’s the blog that inspired the book. And here’s a wonderful video of Dave Gray at IxD10 presenting the ideas that motivate the book:

There is one segment of the video that I particularly like, starting around 26:40 – and it’s on the topic of Artifacts. Here’s Dave Gray:

What is an Artifact? Usually an artifact is something we find in an archeological dig. … But artifacts are usually portable, as opposed to the Parthenon. An artifact is usually something that people have imbued with meaning of some kind and we may or may not know what is it. But it’s an object that has meaning to people, that meant something, and they used it to carry meaning around, like we do with our laptops or books.

So what Artifacts do for us in knowledge games, is artifacts give us a way to make information tangible, so we can put our meaning into motion and make it portable.

So when you’re trying to have a meeting, and all the stuff is just floating around in the air and people are just talking about it and there are no tangible artifacts … you’re expecting everyone to hold all this information in their head, and it’s very hard [for people] to actually think what they want to do with this information, when they’re just trying to track it.

In a nutshell, artifacts “anchor” meaning so that it’s tangible, explicit and can be communicated/shared.

I’ll update this post once I’ve had a chance to read the book.


  1. August 8, 2010 at 11:01 am

    Thanks for the post Glenn, I look forward to hearing more of your thoughts after you’ve had a look at the book.


    • August 8, 2010 at 11:23 am

      Appreciate the reply Dave. Actually, I had a quick chat with Parker Lee last week. I work for a Canada’s largest media company, and we face extraordinary challenges around innovating and reinventing our business model. I mentioned two specific interests: (i) being exposed to your approach to facilitating group sessions around business model change/innovation, and (ii) exploring having XPLANE facilitate a sessions with our senior executive.

      Parker said he’d have someone from XPLANE/Dachis group get back to me on the above. Hoping to hear back from him next week.

      Long time fan Dave, back to the early days of Business 2.0.

      Best regards,

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