Where do innovations actually come from? As it turns out, much technology is not invented solely locally and is not done by a lone individual. Instead, it is borrowed from other societies and from other inventors who’ve gone before. The spread of useful invention depends on whether a society that learns about it is receptive to it and adopts it. Societies lacking the invention often find themselves at a disadvantage in relation to the receptive society, even becoming overwhelmed and replaced if the disadvantage is sufficiently great.