"The Discipline of Innovation"
Over the years I've read alot of the works of Peter Drucker whose thinking still guides many people. He wrote in his short paper that was actually a a derivation of one of the books that formed some of the foundations of my approach(es) to business, "Innovation and Entrepreneurship: Practice and Principles."
"...the very foundation of entrepreneurship is the practice of systematic innovation."
According to Drucker, most innovations come from the analysis of seven areas of opportunity:
+ Unexpected Occurrences
+ Process Needs
+ Industry and market changes
+ Demographic changes
+ Changes in perception
+ New knowledge
Insight into how we see things "today" often come from the "past." In this case, Drucker's book, Innovation and Entrepreneurship was written in 1985 (I believe - I first read it during the onset of my mid-1980's period of unemployment).