The year's not over, but I might be ready to name my favourite book of the year already: it's A Whole New Mind: Moving from the Information Age to the Conceptual Age, by Daniel Pink, the author of Free Agent Nation.
In a nutshell, the book says the future will be more right-brained. Well, R-directed thinking, as he puts it, because even the most "right-brained" activity still involves your left hemisphere too.
What does it mean for your thinking to be more R-directed? It means picking up on the new six senses that are transforming our world: Design, Story, Symphony, Empathy, Play and Meaning.
Why do we need these six senses? The three A's: Asia, Abundance and Automation. In short, the knowledge-focused jobs of the late 20th century (for instance, just about anything to do with programming computers) are either being automated or outsourced to countries like India and China with a cheaper and very numerous workforce. Meanwhile, an abundance of choice is making it difficult for products and services to compete in the marketplacee—the ones that do well usually have an R-directed element to them.
As you can tell, A Whole New Mind is very well-organised. And it's entertaining to read, too. Especially if, like me, you have an underactive left hemisphere and fear that it will disadvantage you in the business world.
Now I can tell people with pride that I took an all-arts course in my final year of high school. If they ask me what good Music, Art History and Classical Studies did me, I'll just point them to A Whole New Mind!
I am, of course, being a little tongue-in-cheek. Pink never suggests we'll have no use for L-directed activities or thought processes; instead he says left and right need to work together like never before.