Nature of Innovation

Check out Eric von Hippel's books on innovation. They are available on line and worth a read. In his Democratizing Innovation, I just finished chapter 7 ("Innovation Communities") which contians a very lucid discussion of open source software innovation communities as well as physical products innovation communities such as the ones set up by Saul Griffith for people interested in user initiatied design and manufacture of kitesurfing equipment. (See also this Wired article on Squid Labs.)
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