Reading this article about nomenclature for Lego families reminded me of the painstakingly illustrated plan diagrams I sent to the Lego corporation in the 4th and 5th grade with designs I’d created and suggestions for new pieces. My nomenclature followed that of Barney, with an “-er” suffix added to the number of studs at the top.
Lego bricks were a lot simpler back in those days, which reminds me of another article I recently saw which describes why the company is moving away from more universal bricks to specialized themed playsets (NYT link) because of the money associated with Hollywood tie-ins. My feelings on the subject echo those of a psychologist quoted for the article:
“When you have a less structured, less themed set, kids have the ability to start from scratch. When you have kids playing out Indiana Jones, they’re playing out Hollywood’s imagination, not their own.”
My M.O. was to build the kit, then take it apart and try to build something else from my own head. I’d guess that 9/10 of my bricks spent their lives as original creations.