which one came first

business or innovation

domestication of animals leading to agriculture, then trade.

invention —> embraced by users [innovation]------> transactions [business]

"domestication of animals leading to agriculture, then trade.

invention —> embraced by users [innovation]------> transactions [business]"

To this I would add:

domestication of animals leading to agriculture, then trade, then writing and recorded abstract thought.

so…

invention —> embraced by users [innovation] --------> transactions [business] -------> symbolic thinking [innovation again][/quote]

embraced by users [innovation]

Where is the link of innovation to being ‘embraced by users’? If something is new and NOT embraced by users, is it still innovative? I always thought something new was an innovation, regardless of acceptance, no? I ask this because it seems to be a reoccuring theme in these threads.

It’s a great question and I think it’s one of the things that we’re collectively thrashing on - just trying to establish some common language (or at least establish the differences in our individual definitions)

Innovation.

Assuming at some point a caveman found himself with a couple of extra kills, the choice of options would initially have been:

  • eat all you can, the rest rots
  • eat some, use the rest for bait
  • eat some, give the rest away

There are three problems in the above options: waste requires a means to preserve the food, bait requires a system for entrapment, distribution requires a system to deal with the nature of human interaction (who gets the food and who doesn’t and under what circumstances).

Problems breed solutions (innovation).

Waste is inherently recognizable as being undesirable, so the innovation is to develop a form of storage or preservation. Which gets us back to having more than necessary (the original condition).

Bait used in a trap leads to issues of waste and preservation which then, again, leads to the original condition.

Distribution of excess is the top tier problem. But what if there isn’t enough to go around? or you want to be selective in who receives the food? or you recognize that the game is seasonal. or some other issue arises that requires resolution? At that point the rudiments of trade are formed.

“I’ll give you this carcass in exchange for…”

Business.

Innovation can exist so long as one person has a problem. Business can only occur if there is more than one person.

It’s a great question and I think it’s one of the things that we’re collectively thrashing on - just trying to establish some common language (or at least establish the differences in our individual definitions.

Innovation is introducing a new way to fulfill a want, need or desire.

in the absence of demand to fulfill a want, need, or desire, innovation creates the demand for a want need or desire.

Innovation is introducing a new way to fulfill a want, need or desire.

in the absence of demand to fulfill a want, need, or desire, innovation creates the demand for a want need or desire.

I’m refining my own definition of innovation here. Using the first line of the quote: Innovation can fufill the needs and wants of just ONE person-the innovator. Therefore innovation is not dependant on bieng accepted by the masses. It can be, and you probably only hear of the ones that are accepted and popular, but an innovative ‘flop’ of a product is still innovative. It’s just a case of someone fufilling a need that is too particular or personal, or just unmarketable.

That helps explain the millions of patents in the USPTO that never hit the market. They fit the description of ‘unique’ and ‘not obvious’ yet also fit the description of ‘dumb’ or ‘unneeded’ by the masses.

Don’t forget about timing. The Apple Newton was the first PDA. It was very innovative and also a complete failure. Now, there are millions of type-As that can’t live without their Blackberries.