Discovery trends and creaming curves going back more than 100 years show today s industry in context. The current exploration world is quite unlike the industry that had existed over most of its long history. Over a single decade it has become highly polarised between unconventional plays onshore and deepwater plays offshore. These two hot themes do not loom quite so large when viewed from a century long perspective. Since 1900 the industry has added around five trillion barrels of oil equivalent resource. Unconventional and deepwater plays together amount to just 10% of these volumes.