The Instigator
Pro (for)
1 Points
The Contender
Con (against)
10 Points

Being innovative is more important than being right

Do you like this debate?NoYes+0
Add this debate to Google Add this debate to Delicious Add this debate to FaceBook Add this debate to Digg  
Post Voting Period
The voting period for this debate has ended.
after 3 votes the winner is...
Voting Style: Open Point System: 7 Point
Started: 1/7/2013 Category: Philosophy
Updated: 5 years ago Status: Post Voting Period
Viewed: 2,503 times Debate No: 28867
Debate Rounds (5)
Comments (9)
Votes (3)




Hello con and spectators. Before con and I jump into this debate, I will state the outline, rules and definitions for this debate.

Round outline:
Round 1) Definitions, greetings/acceptance, rules and outline of debate.
Round 2) Opening statement; no rebuttals may be presented in this round
Round 3) Rebuttals
Round 4) Rebuttals
Round 5) Summaries and conclusion. No new arguments may be presented in this round.

To be innovative is to be use or show new methods, ideas, etc.

To be right is to be "in accordance with what is just, good, or proper."

To be important is to be "marked by or indicative of significant worth or consequence : valuable in content or relationship."

1) No arguments outside of the definitions provided (no sematics).
2) Try to deviate from any and all logical fallacies.
3) Have fun. Fun is important.

Give an unbiased vote. Votes should only be on the quality of each debator's performance and arguments.


I will, of course, argue that being innovative is more important to society than being right. My opponent will argue that being right is more important to society than being innovative.

I look forward to an interesting and fun debate!


Let's do this!
Debate Round No. 1


The last that I could like to say before I kick off this debate pertains to the voters again. Voters, the maximum amount of characters allowed are 4,000. With that's being said, here we go!

“Logic will get you from A to B. Imagination will take you everywhere.” -Albert Einstein,

Where can standing within the parameters of being right take you? Sure, it can get you the perfect grade if you do everything right in a Calculus final. It can grant you the approval of your peers and thus provide you with a sense of belonging. It can even offer itself as a justification for you to believe that you are a good person. However, it only does just that. Standing within the parameters of being right does not bring about moral reform; it takes innovation to do that. Standing within the parameters of being right does not revolutionize the status quo; it takes innovation to do that. Being right brings the approval of whichever group of people has the same set of moral values and laws while innovation brings things that were never perceived of before.

Consider the following two examples where innovation led to a technological breakthrough:

In the 1970s, few people have heard of a microcomputer, a complete computer scaled down (or a personal computer. Remember that computers were far greater in size than today's computers). Microsoft revolutionizd the way in which computers worked by incorporating a new operating system (OS) devised in 1980, the MS-DOS (Microsoft Disk Operating System), into the IBM PC to be shipped out in 1981 [1]. It was soon followed by the first version of Windows, Windows 1.0, which was then followed by the next versions of Windows up until Windows 8.

Zuse: Z1
Konrad Zuse, renowned in Germany as "the father of computers," built what is considered the first real computer from 1936 to 1938 (although, there is some debate as to whether or not Zuse really built the first real computer, seeing that other nations reserved the honor for their own scientists. Challengers to the name included the Moore School of Electrical Engineering of the University of Pennsylvania with the ENIAC, which solved the first problem in 1945 and Howard Aiken with the Mark 1 between 1939 to 1944). It was the first computer to be mechanically programmable [3] and it was the forerunner of the modern calculator, seeing that its primary purpose was to compute a series of algorithms.

These two technilogical breathroughs have two things in common: they both introduced a methodology of work that did not exist prior to their release and they were both the result of innovation.

Innovation is not limited to technology; consider the American Revolution and the events following that. Think about the significance of the American Constitution and how it offered a system of government that did not exist in the colonies prior to its enactment. Think about the significance of the American Consitution and how it defined the rights of the American people. Now think about innovation because America, as we know it today, would not have been possible without it (no semantic purpose with the use of the word "rights.").

I yield the rest of round two to Con for his opening statment.






Thanks for a Great Constructive Maestro!

For clarity; I will be using 'ingenuity' as a synonym for 'the trait of being innovative'.

The Con's argument will be based on two logical premises;
First; being right is a necessary precedent to innovation-
Simply having an idea of a way to change the status quo is not sufficient to bring about true innovation; if that were the case then we would have flying cars, a cure to aids and world peace. Surely there have been people who have dreamt of solving these problems and have even taken innovative action against them -- and yet they still persist.

The reason for this, is that while those who have tackled these problems have had good intentions, they didn't know what the right thing to do was; they didn't know the right science, the right equation, the right structure -- they don't know how to do it correctly.

In 1903 the wright brothers created the world's first airplane[1], but not before first finding the lift equation[2] and learning through observation how birds fly through the warping of their wings. They wouldn't have had success even despite their innovation if they hadn't known the right formula for how things fly in the first place.

Meanwhile we see that even with innovation and improvement in the field of aerodynamics, many airplanes have still failed[3] due to poor design. The designers had good intentions and meant only to innovate the field of aerodynamics, but they still failed because it wasn't right.

There are certain natural laws pertaining to physics that must be adhered regardless of the level of one's ingenuity; so then being right about those laws is more important than being innovative. It doesn't matter how much we want cars to run without any kind of energy or maintenance, that kind of innovation won't happen without the right science to spur it on. According to Newton's Third Law of Physics[4], "For every action, there is an equal and opposite reaction."

Second; Being right and being innovative aren't in conflict
Now let me clarify before getting into the bulk of this argument. Since it is my burden to prove that being right is more important than being innovative I do not intend to argue balance here (saying both are equal), but that one will never be put in a one-or-the-other situation when dealing with innovation and rightness.

To extend upon my previous point dealing with the laws of physics, you cannot hope to have ingenuity unless you've gotten the physics behind the innovative process right. As much as we would like to have the innovation energy-free cars, our steps to achieving this must be in line with the laws of physics; unless they are right in this regard innovation cannot happen.

So then the logical conclusion is that since science that is right is required for innovation, being right is indeed more important than innovation.

Back to you Pro!
Debate Round No. 2


Excellent, Con.

My opponent's arguments center around this position, which I will then refute:
"First; being right is a necessary precedent to innovation."

Not necessarily; the arts are not necessarily under the domain of right and wrong. For instance, a child can create a story without utilizing correct English, proper grammar, or effective storytelling. Being an artist myself (in the areas of music), I do not have to follow the rules of composition: proper chord progressions, key signatures and the like, to create an awe-inspiring, impactful piece of music.

As much as I would like to delve further into the arts, delving into the arts is not within my intentions. I will instead cut straight to the point of my opponent's arguments, the relationship between innovation and the knowledge of the right applications of methods and technology in engineering, and show how his arguments fail to justify how being right is more important than being innovative.

The Importance of the Drawing Board

Think about your vehicles. Now, think about the fuel it runs on. Once you nearly expend all of the fuel in your vehicles, it becomes necessary for you to pay for more fuel to put in your vehicles to continue driving. Imagine going through this routine again and again until the price of gasoline spiked beyond what you could afford. With that in mind, think about the fate of automotive transportation if the idea of alternative energies never existed, even in the form of an afterthought.

Sure, with the application of the right sciences and technologies, engineers can improve the fuel efficiency of the automobile. However, without even the consideration of alternative energies, the automobile would be doomed; the improvements would only delay the inevitable.

Here's another thought: do you think that mathematicians would have been able to piece together a series of equations necessary to ease the processes of calculus, trigonometry, and algebra in engineering without the human capacity for innovation? My contention is that they would have been incapable of math itself without innovation. Mathematics were invented to address three human needs: [1]"

1) Counting.

2) Calculations.

3) Measurement.

All three needs directly applied to the Wright brothers' task of constructing the first airplane and all three needs continue to apply to the task of improving the performance of today's aircraft, automobiles, and any and all other related technologies; of course many models of aircraft failed, so did an unmanned Delta II rocket [2], but how does this negate the importance of innovation?

I will briefly point out that innovation was the driving force behind the evolution of science and the technologies assciated with science (which are potentially pretty much every piece of technology).

"There are certain natural laws pertaining to physics that must be adhered regardless of the level of one's ingenuity; so then being right about those laws is more important than being innovative."

Well, humanity is right in following the laws of physics day after day because people are conformed by it; none of us can telepathically fly, even if we wanted to.

In conclusion, correct science is essential for the success of innovation, but innovation was essential for the existence of science.

And now, back to you Con!






Note: Please do not play the videos until instructed to do so

Being right is precedent to innovation-
As an artist myself[5], I'd like to think I'm pretty clever. Whenever I sit down at my computer and begin to draw, it's a very therapeutic experience that I enjoy a lot; I drew all the aforementioned pictures with mouse, so I'm even more proud of them because of that. I'd like to say that my little characters are even kind of cute -- that's because they're neotenous[6]. That's right guys, through science and exploration we've even been able to discover what makes something cute or not; when we see traits resembling our own offspring, we find them endearing, even if they're a bit unproportional. Art is symbolic and in order for it to truly resonate with someone, it must meet their aesthetic principles

Go ahead and watch the two videos now.

Get my point? Music is amazing, but we tend to fall into a pattern and replicate things we've heard before. That's because music has a strong mathematical link[7]. There are certain tones and octaves we like more than others; which is why a good Killers song is relaxing, while a Nicki Minaj song is guilty pleasure you secretly love.

As for the kid and her story? She at least needs to know an established language to tell her story, even if she doesn't have everything about it perfect. I'm not going to understand her is she just stares at me and makes far noises.

So what about the conflict issue?
It was dropped.

What this means is that when we agree you need to know the right science, math, cord progression or color palette to create something -- then you're not going to be able to create whatever you want to create without those right things. Whether or not you understand why those are the right things or not they need to be right in order to work. A lead balloon isn't going to fly just because you want it to.

One may not know why the grass is green and the trees are blue, but there is a reason for it. And with a little research and work, one can find the answer.

As for that drawing board?
I agree that it's important to find alternative fuel sources, but unless those sources work to fuel a vehicle simply attempting to use another fuel isn't innovative. Just because gas get expensive doesn't mean I'm going to be able to pour water into my tank and hope it works; I need to find the right engine configuration to turn that water into energy.

Without the right science, innovation means nothing.

Simply put, consideration of an alternative isn't enough; if it doesn't work it isn't right. I still show that being right is precedent to innovation, as not innovation exists unless the science behind it is right.

As for math, it isn't a uniquely human conception. Take the Fibonacci spiral[8], although we gain an understanding of it through human devices, it isn't of human origin; however we have been able to appropriate it and use it to better our own understanding of mathematics[9] and put it to practical use.

The point is that the Fibonacci spiral existed before mankind discovered it. creative and innovative things may have occurred without a full understanding of these conceptions, but they existed and dictate that innovation nonetheless.

But what's more, being right can exist without innovation taking place; it must exist as physics are the laws of the universe -- however for innovation to take place it must fall within the parameters of rightness.

In Conclusion,
Innovation is important, but it cannot be more important than being right as it depends on being right to be innovative.

Vote Con!
Debate Round No. 3


This debate escalated quickly; I will delve into the arts after all.

The aesthetic preferences of an individual or a group of people does not render a piece objectively right or wrong.

I have argued in round 3 that art is not under the domain of right and wrong. In an attempt to refute my argument, my opponent argued that art must satisfy a person's aesthetic principles (preference of music, preference of visual art, preference of the medium(s) used to create the art, and so on) in order for it to resonate with that person. He also argued that "through science and exploration, we have been able to discover what makes something cute."

Although it is true that we have aesthetic standards, our aesthetic standards do not render a piece of art right or wrong because frankly, the number of aesthetic demographics is so large [I][II] that a piece of art, like a piece of music, cannot be objectively right or wrong. To name a few, there are people who like
  • pop,
  • heavy metal,
  • classical music,
  • contemporary symphonic music (like myself),
  • rap,
  • techno,
  • celtic music, and many more.
Yes, there are even people who like country!

Lets say that two people, Timmy and Sarah, meet each other. Timmy is a devout Eminem fan who has purchased and listened to all of Eminem's current albums. Likewise, Sarah is a devout Justin Bieber fan who has purchased and listened to all of his current albums. They both have a discussion about the music they like to listen to; Timmy argues that Eminem is better and that Justin Bieber is a genuine aesthetic embarassment while Sarah argues that Justin Bieber is better and that Eminem is too obscene. Neither Timmy or Sarah is correct because their argument are only backed up by their own aesthetic preferences.

The system of math is set up so that there is only one answer to every problem; 8x5 will always equal 40 and the square root of 100 will always equal 10, but art is not bound by objective standards. Other people can criticise a work of art and suggest ways to make it better, but ultimately, the only person who is absolutely correct in his or her judgement of a piece of art is the artist who made it.


What is more important in contributing to the success of an artist? Good question; an artist's best tool is his or her capacity for innovation. Without innovation, what possibility is there for an artist to succeed, let alone be identified as an artist?

It takes innovation to get to the right solution.
Oftentimes, the problems we are presented with takes an analysis of several ideas. Consider the burdain of the automotive industry's need to satisfy the demand of the rising megatrends, such as the aging society [III, p.7]. A car designed to satisfy this megatrend would need to have the best in the following attributes:
  • Ergonomically designed boarding, loading and seating solutions.
  • Visual aids for better night and rain vision.
  • Easy-to-use functions even for complicated devices.
  • Timeless design features.
  • Speed and special attention recommendation displays.
  • Side and rear-view cameras.
  • Customized mobility services.

It takes innovation to design a car that satisfies the demands of the targeted costumers in the megatrend. Likewise, it takes ingenuity to come up with a solution to any problem that requires divergent thinking to solve.


Being right precedes innovation?

"Innovation is important, but it cannot be more important than being right as it depends on being right to be innovative."

See my argument for ingenuity in art at the beginning of this argument.

Don't be so quick to vote for Con!




Note: Do not watch the linked videos until directed to do so.
I thank my opponent for his refutations!

So concerning aesthetic arguments,
I agree wholeheartedly that musical taste is subjective, but that doesn't refute the fact that there are standards for what makes something pleasing and what makes it obnoxious. Simply winning the claim that art is subjective and doesn't win an argument for innovation. One doesn't like music just because it's art, they like it because they enjoy the musician's style, the genre, their friends like it or whatever else.

For a type of art to be innovative, it must fundamentally change the face of the specific field of art it encompasses. That's why we look at bands such as The Beatles as a game changer[10], but people like soldier boy were one-hit wonders[11].

Furthermore even with my opponent's delightful analysis of Eminem and Justin Bieber, it doesn't reject that rightness in some form preceded these artist's notoriety. No matter what yo think about Justin Bieber, you would be lying if you said he couldn't sing well, unlike exhibit A (watch the first video). Eminem also knows what he's doing when rapping, he's got some really clever lyrics that flow well, unlike exhibit B.

Even though the two aforementioned videos seem kind of... awkward, the artists undeniably worked really hard on them. They weren't innovative however as the artists didn't quite get it right. To be innovative you need the right look, the right style, the right philosophy, the right message -- something has to be right before that art is innovative.

Finally before I move on I want to note two things,
1. My opponent refutation her fringes on being an Ad Hoc Rescue[12] as it isn't in line with my opponent's original point of contention concerning innovation being more important than rightness, but instead concerns itself with artistic subjectivity,
2. The issue of rightness and innovation being in conflict was never addressed. Pro offers analytic refutation that rightness isn't precedent to innovation, but leads that analysis into music. I've already addressed the music argument, so...

Pro still drops the conflict argument, and Con wins precedence.

Finally, getting technical again,
My opponent cites the auto industry's attempt to tackle rising mega-trends such as an aging society and concludes that proposed solutions gives innovation precedence to rightness.

However this assumption is but that, an assumption. There is nothing innovative about a proposal until it can be put into action, something I show in very my first round.[3][4] Myman's proposals are nothing but science fiction unless he has the proper mechanics to support his proposals. People are naturally creative, but a creative thought doesn't mean a solution has been found.

Just because I'd like to solve world hunger by turning trash into food using a machine that runs on water, doesn't mean I will do it. I need to figure out how to do it first.

Knowledge of the correct solution must be present before an idea becomes innovation. There is nothing innovative about feeding people wet garbage because I'm sure my machine is 'innovative'.

In Conclusion,
Unless one has a right view of the world, their ideas aren't innovative. Therefore innovation is not more important than being right, as rightness is a necessary precedent to innovation.

Vote Con!
Debate Round No. 4




I would like to say that, for this being my third completed debate, I thoroughly enjoyed it. My opponent was a great opponent to debate against and I have learned a lot for the next debate/research paper/vocal debate I will have/write.


I've got to say, openly conceding is pretty admirable. Thanks for a great debate on your end as well, I hope to have more in the future!

All arguments extended, vote Con!
Debate Round No. 5
9 comments have been posted on this debate. Showing 1 through 9 records.
Posted by DoctorDeku 5 years ago
I'm going to be posting at the last second, but rest assured I will not time out.
Posted by DoctorDeku 5 years ago
Okay, thank goodness. I'm not going to time out >->'

I'll have my round one posted soon (6 hours left fr me)
Posted by DoctorDeku 5 years ago
Hey, if I time out can you please just extend your arguments? I'll pick up in the following round if I can't respond now; it wouldn't be a full forfeit.
Posted by DoctorDeku 5 years ago
I only have 20 hours left. I'm going to have to post within the next few hours.
Posted by MaestroEvans 5 years ago
Can you wait until sometime tomorrow to post an argument? I won't have internet until sunday.
Posted by DoctorDeku 5 years ago
It's cool. I'm likely not going to be able to post until the last minute anyway, so I'll probably make a sloppy argument too XD.
Posted by MaestroEvans 5 years ago
Sorry for failing to post my opening statement promptly. I didn't have much time for this.
Posted by MaestroEvans 5 years ago
Only 4000 Characters? This will be interesting.
Posted by DoctorDeku 5 years ago
If you cut the character count down to 4000 I'll accept.
3 votes have been placed for this debate. Showing 1 through 3 records.
Vote Placed by rross 5 years ago
Agreed with before the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Agreed with after the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Who had better conduct:-Vote Checkmark-1 point
Had better spelling and grammar:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Made more convincing arguments:-Vote Checkmark-3 points
Used the most reliable sources:--Vote Checkmark2 points
Total points awarded:04 
Reasons for voting decision: Actually, it kind of annoyed me that Pro conceded this. Why? I think Con did win this on arguments, even without the concession, but there were plenty of arguments Pro could have used against him. I think if you're going to concede after such a long debate, you should explain why. I'm being inconsistent: on other debates I've awarded conduct points FOR conceding. But this one just really annoys me for some reason.
Vote Placed by 1Devilsadvocate 5 years ago
Agreed with before the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Agreed with after the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Who had better conduct:Vote Checkmark--1 point
Had better spelling and grammar:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Made more convincing arguments:-Vote Checkmark-3 points
Used the most reliable sources:--Vote Checkmark2 points
Total points awarded:13 
Reasons for voting decision: Concession.
Vote Placed by Xerge 5 years ago
Agreed with before the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Agreed with after the debate:--Vote Checkmark0 points
Who had better conduct:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Had better spelling and grammar:--Vote Checkmark1 point
Made more convincing arguments:-Vote Checkmark-3 points
Used the most reliable sources:--Vote Checkmark2 points
Total points awarded:03 
Reasons for voting decision: Concession