Shortly before his death in 2011, Steve Jobs said, “I think the biggest innovations of the 21st century will be at the intersection of biology and technology. A new era is beginning.” The crossroads that he spoke of actually has a name – biomimicry – and while it has been helping inventors, designers and architects innovate in genius ways for centuries, its value has become even more apparent in the past few years as we realize that Mother Nature is one of the universe's most incredible designers. If you're not yet familiar with biomimicry, it's a word that describes finding design inspiration from nature to solve human problems. There are examples of biomimicry all around us – velcro, airplanes, solar panels modelled on ivy, and even buildings modelled after termite mounds. The people who came up with these inventions were obviously intelligent, but even more important, they were good observers able to make a connection between an issue they wanted to address and a solution that already existed in nature. If you're an architect, designer or inventor facing a design dilemma that you simply can't get past, or if you're just feeling stuck in a rut, the answer may be right in front of you – if you know where to look.