Eureka Method: How to Think like an Inventor

Course Length:



This two-day course is targeted first to help the participants understand the inventive process and to unlock their creative powers and, second, to ground the participants in the art and science of patent protection. The process of Invention and Design Thinking for an organization will be emphasized. Each student will receive a copy of Dr. Hershey’s text, The Eureka Method: How to Think Like an Inventor.

What you will learn:

  • The power of dimensional thinking – the dimensionality of the inventor’s vision and the invention.
  • Challenges that motivate invention and how they might be met.
  • Tools for enabling invention.
  • Key issues of patent protection that inventors must know and practice in order to be outstandingly effective and valuable.
  • Taking topics and questions “back home” for leading discussion groups.

Course Outline:

  1. Patents and the US patent system. Patents are recognized milestones of invention. The patent system is a guide and metric for determining the presence of invention and the Government databases are a national treasure for researching ideas. Learning how to use these databases is invaluable to the inventor.
  2. The Dimensional Mindset. Discussion and examples of the increase in value that may come from increasing dimensionality or, conversely, the loss in value by using too few dimensions which is (“dedimensionalization”). New dimensions must be chosen carefully so that they will provide increased incremental value. Additionally, changing a dimension may result in significant value for the inventor.
  3. The “Bottom Line”. Not a number but rather a mindset and attitude for the accomplished inventor in order to effectively link the inventive effort to bottom line requirements.
  4. Gaming the System. A technique of using the system to expand itself through invention. Turning disadvantages on their heads.
  5. Constraint-based innovation. Quite often invention will be required to get around a constraint that may be physical, cultural, geographic, or anything that blocks a straightforward solution to a problem. An inventor loves constraints – they are so very often at the center of the most intense inventive efforts.


If this course is not on the current schedule of open enrollment courses and you are interested in attending this or another course as an open enrollment, please contact us at (410)956-8805 or Please indicate the course name, number of students who wish to participate. and a preferred time frame. ATI typically schedules open enrollment courses with a 3-5 month lead time. For on-site pricing, you can use the request an on-site quote form, call us at (410)956-8805, or email us at


  • Dr. John Hershey is a technologist and was one of the leading inventors on the technical staff at the general Electric Global Research Center. He has forty years of engineering experience in the government intelligence community, Dept. of Commerce, and private industry. He has 200 allowed US patents, has coauthored 2 encyclopedia entries and 8 books on system theory, LEO satellites, spread spectrum communications, and, the latest two, Cryptography Demystified and The Eureka Method: How to Think like an Inventor, in the McGraw-Hill series. He coauthored the seminal paper “White Space Patenting” that was published in Intellectual Property Today and he was elected a Fellow of the IEEE for contributions to secure communications. He has served as an adjunct faculty member for several universities and as an ABET program evaluator.

    Contact these instructors (please mention course name in the subject line)

Request On-Site Quote