A great way to help fire up the imagination is to contemplate product merges. The beauty of this idea is that every single item you come into contact with in any and all situations and surroundings offers new possibilities. By combining two or more existing elements you can create a new idea whether uniting the products as they are or modifying by using similar thinking. (See Odd combinations Mind Map)
You could ask probing questions such as how would an airbag assist in other fields outside the vehicle industry? Might ladders incorporate airbag technology? How about trains and buses? Where else? What else? (See How could you modernize a door? Mind Map)
How might books be revolutionised? What new production methods or combinations could there be? How about a DVD screen on the cover to reflect the content?
Creating a mind map of a single product you can expand out and uncover new connections and uses for the product.
Everything you see or touch could have potential links to other items; by heightening your senses and observation skills you can use your imagination to dream up new ideas.