How many legs does a dog have?

How many legs does a dog have?

Does a dog have 1, 2, 3 or 4 legs?
The answer: all of the above.

Most dogs are born with 4 legs, of course, but some are born with less and some lose a few along the way. A dog with 2 legs is still a dog though. And that dog can be pretty happy too:

Another one: A philosophy professor asked this student a question for their final exam. The question was:

How are you going to make me believe that this chair in front of you is invisible?

It took all the student one hour to finish writing their answer, except for one student who only took a few seconds. His answer:

What chair?

We are all full of assumptions, preconceived opinions and we all have a talent to make things more complicated than needed.

Philippe Halsman is a very inspiring photographer who made an art of making things simpler. His mantra was to come up with great ideas for photos and then take a short cut to making them. Want to make a photo of Marylyn Monroe or Nixon floating in the air? Just ask them to jump! Want to see Dali surrounded by flying cats and floating water? Go find a few cats and some buckets!

One day Dali suggested that Halsman make a photo of Dali with dollar bills attached to his mustache. Halsman thought it would be a nice idea so arranged for a bank to come and deliver the money. An armed security guard arrived with a briefcase attached to his arm.

Dali took out the two $10,000 bills and asked Halsman ‘so how do we attach them to my mustache’ and before the security guard could react Halsman took a pair or scissors and pierced both bills. The result is the photo you see in the header of this post.

When you are confronted with questions and challenges try to think about the shortest path to a solution. What would a kid do? What would Halsman do?

Read next: Brilliant Mac email app Sparrow heading for the iPhone, first image emerges

Shh. Here's some distraction