Steve Job famously audited a calligraphy class at Reed College. What he saw there inspired his focus on font design and quality in the early Macintosh computers.

This examples get a lot of airtime because of how unexpected it is. But, most innovations come from combining familiar things in unexpected and novel ways.

And, the paths to what’s important and impactful are rarely linear or obvious.

The best way to build your innovation toolkit is to explore a broad range of subject areas and to following threads of interest, even if you don’t know where they’ll lead you.

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