Great inventors engage in divergent or “wrong” thinking, which allows them to explore the full realm of possibilities for a solution - no matter how silly or far-fetched. They’re not necessarily concerned with the most logical solution, and certainly not with one that draws on “conventional wisdom.” As modern-day inventor Sir James Dyson puts it:
We’re taught to do things the right way. But if you want to discover something that other people haven’t, you need to do things the wrong way… When I was doing my vacuum cleaner, I started out trying a conventionally shaped cyclone, the kind you see in textbooks. But we couldn’t separate the carpet fluff and dog hairs and strands of cotton in those cyclones. It formed a ball inside the cleaner or shot out the exit and got into the motor. I tried all sorts of shapes. Nothing worked. So then I thought I’d try the wrong shape, the opposite of conical. And it worked.