1. [Turing tape] You need an idea notebook.
2. [Open-minded] Do not aim to solve some specific problem.
3. [Proliferate and select] You may need 10 to 100 ideas before you find a good one.
4. [Aloof] Avoid feeling part of any specific academic community.
5. [Be the boss] Avoid working for anyone, and that includes a granting agency.
6. [Data] Don’t publish without data.
7. [Sloth] Avoid all but the simplest experiments, and avoid building complex tools.
Mark Changizi, author of Harnessed: How Language and Music Mimicked Nature and Transformed Ape to Man, on the 7 requirements for all effective scientists. (via explore-blog)