Innovation By Imitation: Study Shows That Success Comes From Imitation

from the go-with-what-works dept

We've discussed in the past the differences between invention and innovation -- where invention is the creation of something new, and innovation is the actual process of putting it into practice. We've pointed out that the patent system is supposed to encourage the latter (innovation -- as seen in the command that the system "promote the progress") but in practice tends to promote the former at the expense of the latter. The problem is that people who aren't that familiar with the process of innovation think that the two things are the same. But, in reality, innovation is an ongoing process, whereby people have to keep trying out different ideas to make something useful. Anyone who's built a business learns this quickly: the original idea is usually meaningless by the time anything successful comes around. Real innovation is a process of continually trying out new ideas and tweaking them slightly until you figure out what really attracts the market's attention. Studies have shown that real innovation is this kind of ongoing process, rather than the "flash of insight" concept pushed by patent system supporters.

Of course, when innovation is an ongoing process, patents tend to hold back that process. That's because they make it so that only one player in the field -- who perhaps is not the one best equipped to innovate -- gets to run that process. Everyone else is held back. It also slows down the pace of innovation, since without competition, the patent holder has less incentive to keep trying out those new ideas to find what works best. As we've learned for years and years, competition breeds innovation -- but the patent system is designed to cut out competition for no particular reason.

Defenders of the patent system will often claim that the more socially beneficial result is for competitors to come up with something completely new, rather than building off the work of others. However, there is little evidence to support this particular interpretation. In fact, most research into true innovation shows that it is much more efficient for all parties to have access to as many possible solutions as possible -- and holding back those options results in sub-optimal social results.

Yet another new study has shown this to be the case. Some researchers ran a contest of sorts, where they asked various people to submit "programs" in a contest to produce the best results:
A group of researchers set out to answer this question, and published their results in Science last week. To tackle the issue, the researchers set up a computer-based tournament based on Robert Axelrod's 'Prisoner's Dilemma' competitions in the late 1970s. In this type of tournament, entrants submit computerized strategies that compete against each other in a virtual world. Individuals, or "agents," with the most successful strategies survive and reproduce, while less successful strategies die out.

In each round of the social learning tournament, automated agents could choose from 100 behaviors, each of which returned a certain payoff. The payoffs changed over the course of the tournament, simulating changing environmental conditions that might render a behavior more or less useful. In any round, agents could make one of three moves: use a behavior they already knew (Exploit), use asocial learning to test a new behavior by trial-and-error (Innovate), or learn socially by watching a behavior that another agent was performing in that round (Observe). Out of the three possible moves, only Exploit resulted in a payoff; the two learning moves would only return information about how profitable the behavior was in the current environmental conditions. Social learning was especially costly; if Observe was played when no other agent was performing a novel behavior, the agent learned nothing.
The results, however, showed that the runaway winners of the contest were those that used "social learning" the most. In other words, they were the ones who took what, on the face of things, appeared to be the most "costly" move -- and focused on what was working best for others and then using it successfully themselves. In other words, yet again, we see that the strategies that make the most sense for the greatest output tend to be those where participants in a market have the ability to copy others. Now, this upsets those who may have come up with the results first, but as other studies have shown, it's rarely the exclusivity of patents that leads to that invention in the first place. So if you don't need exclusivity to invent, and a more open solution of copying leads to greater overall output and social benefit... what, exactly, is the reason for creating these kinds of monopolies anyway?


Reader Comments (rss)

(Flattened / Threaded)

  1.  
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    Pixelation, Apr 22nd, 2010 @ 7:42am

    "what, exactly, is the reason for creating these kinds of monopolies anyway? "

    Cash

     

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  2.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Apr 22nd, 2010 @ 7:57am

    here is the rub. if everyone is watch and nobody is doing there is nobody to learn from. that is why copyright and patents exist because too many people are not original just good at mimicking others. if everyone was an observer and nobody felt the desire to exploit as this game puts it nobody would have any answers. thanks for posting something that confirms the need for patent and copyright protections for the brave companies and individuals who innovate rather than duplicate.

     

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  3.  
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    NAMELESS.ONE, Apr 22nd, 2010 @ 7:57am

    @1

    you don't know?
    so i can build more yacht and hire more hookers and bribe Jaffer politicians with cocaine.
    Cocaine isn't cheap ya know

     

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  4.  
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    NAMELESS.ONE, Apr 22nd, 2010 @ 8:01am

    @2

    so by your logic
    if you never play a game , you can make one?

    HOw about the cool features you saw in ten games and combine them to make a really cool game ?

    got the idea yet?

    adversity does not always breed innovation and thats what a patent system of today creates.

    IT creates adverse conditions to create.
    if im not able to afford your stuff to SEE what you have done how can i know tha what i do create you haven't done.

    IT creates a new class called the patent rich like the ibms and microsofts and oracles vs you and me

    should i make somehting they prolly ignore me until it makes serious money, then i get sued. BECAUSE i didn't WATCH or couldn't afford to WATCH

     

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  5.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Apr 22nd, 2010 @ 8:08am

    By the pricking of my thumbs
    RJR this way comes...

     

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  6.  
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    Marcel de Jong (profile), Apr 22nd, 2010 @ 8:12am

    Re: @1

    you know, you could use the "reply to this comment" link underneath each comment. Because the reference numbers get lost if a reader selected the "threaded view". So the @1, and @2 lose their meaning. Just a tip. If you use that link, your comment will appear, for threaded viewers, underneath the comment you are replying to.
    Combine the @#-reference for all I care, but please, use that link.

     

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    medlaw, Apr 22nd, 2010 @ 8:21am

    Innovation by imitation, nice lead. The world patent system is broken but I'm not sure the answer is to abandon it completely. A good example of innovation by imitation is Apple's borrowing the concept of the GUI interface from Xerox (and turning into Macintosh OS). If we augmented the patent laws with something akin to fair use (from copyright law) it would help tremendously. If competitors improve upon the invention, they should be allowed to do so. How to draw that line of "improvement" that does not use an identical process? Very difficult.

     

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  8.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Apr 22nd, 2010 @ 8:30am

    the masnick thinks duplication and changing the color of the box something comes in is innovation. it shows in his lines of thinking which are often innovative only by his own standards.

     

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  9.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Apr 22nd, 2010 @ 8:35am

    Re:

    Remember that one time when TAM didn't lie?

     

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  10.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Apr 22nd, 2010 @ 8:37am

    Re:

    So I guess you want us to ignore all the innovation that happend before patents and copyrights even existed?

    Or all the great new works release under terms that allow them to be freely shared?

     

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  11.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Apr 22nd, 2010 @ 9:40am

    Re: Re:

    Those obviously don't count. I wonder how much more innovation there would have been these past couple of centuries without patents or copyrights?

    http://www.economist.com/science-technology/displaystory.cfm?story_id=15905837

    "Ev en more striking is the claim made by the Duke researchers that patent exclusivity is not necessary to spur innovation in genetic testing. Dr Cook-Deegan argues that testing, unlike pricey drug development, has low barriers to entry and is relatively cheap, so a monopoly is not required to lure investors. As evidence, he points to the case of cystic fibrosis: unlike breast cancer, no monopoly patent blocks access to the relevant gene, and dozens of rival testing companies flourish."

     

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  12.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Apr 22nd, 2010 @ 9:49am

    Re: Re:

    hi mike. dont you get bored of this?

     

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  13.  
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    Richard (profile), Apr 22nd, 2010 @ 9:53am

    Innovation vs Invention

    I don't think these words actually have the meanings that Techdirt assigns to them.

    By definition innovation means creating or introducing something new.

    By definition invention is a very similar word - but carries extra overtones of originality.

    In other words an innovation may also be an invention.

    Actually there are very few true inventions, since simply transferring an idea from another field strictly doesn't count as invention.

    On the other hand innovation by imitations seems to me to be (almost) an oxymoron since pure imitation is not innovation.

    Personally I feel the Techdirt use of the word innovation is itself an invention (in the sense of Google dictionary's third definition http://www.google.co.uk/dictionary?aq=f&langpair=en|en&q=invention&hl=en ) and not particularly helpful to the point they are trying to make.

     

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  14.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Apr 22nd, 2010 @ 10:02am

    Re: Re: Re:

    SAYS THE BORING ONE! WHERE'S YOUR PERSONALITY?

     

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  15.  
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    Greevar (profile), Apr 22nd, 2010 @ 10:09am

    Re: Innovation vs Invention

    invent:
    "To design a new process or mechanism."

    innovate:
    "To alter, to change into something new."

     

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  16.  
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    Richard (profile), Apr 22nd, 2010 @ 10:47am

    Re: Re: Innovation vs Invention

    From Collins English Dictionary

    Innovate Invent....

     

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  17.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Apr 22nd, 2010 @ 10:59am

    Re: Re: Innovation vs Invention

    something new isnt something old with fresh paint or a new logo. a 79 fairmont with fresh paint is still a 79 fairmont and still sucks. innovation involves making something new. what the masnick pushes is replication and repainting, which is not the same thing.

     

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    darryl, Apr 22nd, 2010 @ 11:25am

    You dont know the difference between Invention and Innovation:

    "We've discussed in the past the differences between invention and innovation -- where invention is the creation of something new, and innovation is the actual process of putting it into practice"



    It's funny, you write these 'articles' and in your first statement, you make it clear that you have no understanding AT ALL about what Invention and Innovation is.

    You starting statement is WRONG WRONG WRONG.

    So you're leading statement makes youre entire artical worthless. (after all if you can get that right, why keep reading?)
    An INVENTION is the REAL and PRACTICAL, WORKING design, it's not a theoretical idea. It's a practical method of doing something.

    INNOVATION, is the application of existing inventions to do something different or not expected when the original invention was invented.

    CRT, Cathode Ray Tube, was invented by scientists for the study of electron emision.
    That an invention. (simple isnt it).

    To take a CRT, and build something else upon it, is innovation (that INNOVATION, and it can also be itself an invention).

    So if you get a Cathode Ray Tube, (an invention), and you build some electronics to connect to it and you are able to display pictures no it. You have used INNOVATION (a new method of using something existing for something new), and you have INNOVATED using a CRT to INVENT a TV.

    So how can someone who claims to be 'in the know' about these things, display such a shallow level of understanding on the subject matter of which you claim knowledge.

    People generally can quickly see if someone does not understand what they are talking about, and when they are speaking from the hip.

    But I would expect better from you, spend an hour and read a book or two. before making comments that show you ignorance.

     

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  19.  
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    greg.fenton (profile), Apr 22nd, 2010 @ 11:31am

    Re: Re: Re: Innovation vs Invention

    "Innovation [is] a change in the thought process for doing something or "new stuff that is made useful". It may refer to an incremental emergent or radical and revolutionary changes in thinking, products, processes, or organizations."

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Innovation

     

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  20.  
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    Todd, Apr 22nd, 2010 @ 11:40am

    Re: Re: @1

    I didn't even know there was a threaded view. I've been reading Techdirt for months now and that link never caught my attention. Thanks for turning me on to something new.

     

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  21.  
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    greg.fenton (profile), Apr 22nd, 2010 @ 11:43am

    Re: You dont know the difference between Invention and Innovation:

    You point out the problem with considering invention and innovation as being the process of coming up with a new "thing".

    This is why Mike has written many articles in which he describes invention as the process of coming up with that new "thing", distinct from innovation which is bringing a "thing" to market. The really hard work is often in the latter.

    Otherwise your example of the CRT vs TV as invention vs innovation is now a completely subjective definition. How much does one need to add to an "invention" for it to become a new "invention" rather than simply being an "innovation"?

    Taking an invention off the workbench as it is to market often fails. Quite often that invention needs some modifications for it to be appealing to the marketplace. It is this modification that is innovation: the process of building marketing, packaging, materials selection, pricing, distribution, etc...

     

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  22.  
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    DJ (profile), Apr 22nd, 2010 @ 11:50am

    Re:

    "if everyone is watch and nobody is doing there is nobody to learn from"

    That logic suggests that NOBODY will EVER do anything, which is clearly false. Even the laziest among us (guilty as charged) eventually have to get up and do SOMETHING. When we do, whoever is watching could learn from our success or failure.
    The reason it's costly is that you have to wait for that eventuality. How many cliches are there akin to "no free lunch", "no pain no gain"...etc?

     

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  23.  
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    DJ (profile), Apr 22nd, 2010 @ 11:52am

    Re: Re: Re: @1

    Interestingly, you just proved that "social learning" works.

     

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  24.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Apr 22nd, 2010 @ 11:55am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Innovation vs Invention

    LITTLE AC DOESN'T CARE ABOUT FACTS OR DEFINITIONS!

     

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  25.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Apr 22nd, 2010 @ 12:06pm

    Re: Re: Re:

    Hi TAM, don't you get bored of this?

     

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  26.  
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    DJ (profile), Apr 22nd, 2010 @ 12:06pm

    Re:

    "A good example of innovation by imitation is Apple's borrowing the concept of the GUI interface from Xerox"

    ...and they're being sued because they put someone else's idea to good use for profit.

    "If we augmented the patent laws with something akin to fair use (from copyright law) it would help tremendously"

    Augment - verb (used with object)
    1.to make larger; enlarge in size, number, strength, or extent; increase

    No. No more "augmentation" bull. By definition, all that does is make government bigger. Change it, scrap and start over, make Constitutional amendments, but don't augment it.

     

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  27.  
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    DJ (profile), Apr 22nd, 2010 @ 12:09pm

    Re:

    "changing the color of the box something comes in is innovation"

    Just like trading Bush for Obama? (yeah i went there)

     

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  28.  
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    DJ (profile), Apr 22nd, 2010 @ 12:12pm

    Re: Innovation vs Invention

    innovate: –verb (used without object)
    1.to introduce something new; make changes in anything established.

    invent: verb (used with object)
    1.to originate or create as a product of one's own ingenuity, experimentation, or contrivance: to invent the telegraph.
    2.to produce or create with the imagination: to invent a story.
    3.to make up or fabricate (something fictitious or false): to invent excuses.

    The only part where innovate and invent cross paths is the "something new" part. However, an innovation is the INTRODUCTION of something new, whereas an invention is the CREATION of something new. Similar, yes, but not the same.

     

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  29.  
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    DJ (profile), Apr 22nd, 2010 @ 12:20pm

    Re: You dont know the difference between Invention and Innovation:

    Mike says: "Real innovation is a process of continually trying out new ideas and tweaking them slightly until you figure out what really attracts the market's attention."

    Darryl says: "An INVENTION is the REAL and PRACTICAL, WORKING design, it's not a theoretical idea. It's a practical method of doing something.
    INNOVATION, is the application of existing inventions to do something different or not expected when the original invention was invented."

    I'm not seeing where your points disagree with Mike, Darryl. With your arguments, you seem more to prove his position and counter your own. Which tells me that you're arguing with him because of WHO HE IS and not because of WHAT HE THINKS.

     

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  30.  
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    DJ (profile), Apr 22nd, 2010 @ 12:37pm

    problem-invention-innovation

    Problem: warming homes and cooking food in open fireplaces is dangerous.

    Invention: Franklin stove (Ben Franklin intentionally DECLINED a patent)

    Innovation: EVERY currently existing closed wood-burning stove

    From http://www.ideafinder.com/history/inventions/frankstove.htm
    Governor Thomas, even offered to give Franklin a patent for the sole right of producing and vending them. However Franklin declined because he believed that peoples appreciation of his invention was better then any financial reward. He wrote in his autobiography, "As we enjoy great advantages from the inventions of others, we should be glad of an opportunity to serve others by any invention of ours; and this we should do freely and generously"

    One of the greatest inventors of all time was opposed patents because he thought that the potentional innovations were better than the inventions themselves; and yet here we are with multi-million dollar lawsuits because people are trying to innovate upon someone else's invention.

    Still not convinced? The original Franklin stove, while it solved the problem he was trying to solve, sucked! It was innovators who made it better; and are STILL making it better today.

     

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    darryl, Apr 22nd, 2010 @ 1:05pm

    Invention == innovation++

    It does not really have much to do with markets, it's to do with the correct definition of invention and innovation and what specifically they are.

    Most if not all 'things' are a mix of invention and innovation. Take a TV for example, there is the CRT, Electron Tubes, transistors, Integrated circuits, resistors, RADIO, antennas, transmission lines and so on.

    All inventions, most 'things' are inventions, by definition someone had to come up with the idea (and should be rewarded so).

    TV is a combination of inventions and innovations to create another invention.

    TV was and is not stiffled by patents, but all 'things' are inventions, and if those inventions are put to innovative uses then it's innovation.

    It's not really one is academic and one is commercial, that is far too simplistic and I would expect more from an informed auther.

    Lee De Forest invented the Electron Tube (the Valve), from playing with Edisons newly invented and patented electric light bulb. He invented a electron tube based on someone elses invention.

    But it was different, it was a different method and a unique method of doing something (amplification). So it was a new invention.

    So you have an electron tube invented and patented, someone thinks that could be used as a switch, and uses that invention to innovate and INVENT a computer. It's a new method of doing something, what came before did not stop them, therefore patents do not stiffle invention or innovation (by many examples).

    Just as the patent on a "method for generating torque using stream", did not stop other methods of doing the same thing.

    The patent on the internal combustion engine has not stopped innovation and invention in the auto industry.

    The patent on the transistor did not stop other kinds of transistors, IC's, modern communications, the internet and so on from being invented/innovated ! so again, where are the examples of where innovation and invention are seen as bad things, and where are the examples of patents stifling invennovation (new word). as there is little distinction if any between the two.

    You 'invent' a transistor, and you innovate upon that invention to create computers, radio, TV's and so on. You also invent new things that use allready invented things such as the transistor. Patents and invention promote innovation and further invention. And rewards those that do that for us.

     

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    DJ (profile), Apr 22nd, 2010 @ 1:24pm

    Re: Invention == innovation++

    "You 'invent' a transistor, and you innovate upon that invention to create computers, radio, TV's and so on. You also invent new things that use allready invented things such as the transistor. Patents and invention promote innovation and further invention. And rewards those that do that for us."

    You are absolutely correct that inventions lead to innovations upon that invention, and possibly other inventions. Patents have NOTHING to do with that process. If the light bulb, or the transistor, or the electron tube, had never been patented, the following inventions and innovations would still have occured. Patents only serve to get people paid for having an idea; if you have an invention and want to make money off it, sell the physical product, don't lean on the government.

     

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    DJ (profile), Apr 22nd, 2010 @ 1:36pm

    Re: Re: Invention == innovation++

    Or...

    Problem -> Invention -> Innovation -> Marketable product -> Innovation
    Process repeats indefinitely, and "Marketable product" can move laterally anywhere in there.

    However...
    Problem -> Invention -> POSSIBLY marketable product -> Patent -> GOTO "Problem", and start over.

     

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  34.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Apr 22nd, 2010 @ 3:32pm

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Innovation vs Invention

    wikipedia not really a good source. the masnick could have written that. even then just changing the paint color isnt a radical or revolutionary change in thinking, just in hue.

     

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    Anonymous Coward, Apr 22nd, 2010 @ 3:34pm

    Re: Re: You dont know the difference between Invention and Innovation:

    the masnick thinks you can take the same thing to market 20 times and it is innovative every time. 20 companies making the same thing is somehow innovative. the first guy to turn a crt into a tv is innovative, everyone after that is derivative. he leaves out that very important difference.

     

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  36.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Apr 22nd, 2010 @ 9:00pm

    Re: Re: Re: You dont know the difference between Invention and Innovation:

    Yeah, good thing your straw man isn't a derivative of every other lame straw man you invent.

     

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  37.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Apr 22nd, 2010 @ 9:29pm

    http://www.techdirt.com/articles/20100107/0517167656.shtml

    I wanted to continue where this left off (and I started to in another thread).

    The reason why this makes more sense than patents is also because, without patents, society has more economic incentive to invest in inventions/innovations/solutions because society benefits more from those innovations without patents than with them. The reason for this is because monopolies reduce aggregate output hence reducing the value of these innovations and hence reducing the value to society of investing in these innovations and so reducing the incentive to invest (ie: (value of profits from invention/innovation with patents + value of aggregate output from invention/innovation with patents)

     

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  38.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Apr 22nd, 2010 @ 9:30pm

    http://www.techdirt.com/articles/20100107/0517167656.shtml

    I wanted to continue where this left off (and I started to in another thread).

    The reason why this makes more sense than patents is also because, without patents, society has more economic incentive to invest in inventions/innovations/solutions because society benefits more from those innovations without patents than with them. The reason for this is because monopolies reduce aggregate output hence reducing the value of these innovations and hence reducing the value to society of investing in these innovations and so reducing the incentive to invest (ie: (value of profits from invention/innovation with patents + value of aggregate output from invention/innovation with patents)

     

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  39.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Apr 22nd, 2010 @ 9:30pm

    Re:

    While I think the free market can fund innovative research perfectly fine without the government (and while the government already funds tons of R&D and pharmaceutical corporations end up with the patents), I would much rather a system without patents where the government funds R&D than a system with patents (of course this shouldn't prevent the free market from funding R&D just as well and selling products based on what is produced from said R&D, I just don't think anyone should have a monopoly on what is sold). Granted, government funding will take money and labor away from other sectors of the economy, but if patents do stimulate R&D as patent defenders would say, that would also take jobs and labor away from other sectors of the economy just as well. Patents are worse than government funding because they prevent the free market from funding research on something once someone has a patent on it (or at least they give the free market much less incentive to fund R&D) and because monopolies cause a lot of economic loss (a dead weight loss to society).

    Now if the government did fund more R&D in place of patents and the government did a good job at finding solutions to problems then the free market may not fund R&D in areas where the government funds R&D exactly because the government has already found solutions to those problems.

    You may argue, "well, then R&D grants will become highly politicized." First of all, the government already funds R&D and pharmaceutical corporations end up with the patents; secondly, I'm not necessarily in favor of more government funded R&D and think the free market is perfectly capable of funding necessary R&D without patents; and thirdly, the patent system is just as susceptible to politics (ie: everyone wants to suddenly relocate their operations to East Texas before initiating a patent lawsuit).

     

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  40.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Apr 22nd, 2010 @ 9:31pm

    Re: Re:

    Sorry about the double post, the first time the whole thing didn't make it through. The second time it didn't either and I figure maybe the system limited how much could go through at once? So the third time I simply continued where the second time left off. I always copy what I say and paste it in a notepad before posting in cases like this.

     

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  41.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Apr 22nd, 2010 @ 9:33pm

    Re:

    Oh, I figured it out, I used a greater than sign. Here, I'll repost everything, please delete the posts before this one and this one.

     

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  42.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Apr 22nd, 2010 @ 9:34pm

    http://www.techdirt.com/articles/20100107/0517167656.shtml

    I wanted to continue where this left off (and I started to in another thread).

    The reason why this makes more sense than patents is also because, without patents, society has more economic incentive to invest in inventions/innovations/solutions because society benefits more from those innovations without patents than with them. The reason for this is because monopolies reduce aggregate output hence reducing the value of these innovations and hence reducing the value to society of investing in these innovations and so reducing the incentive to invest (ie: (value of profits from invention/innovation with patents + value of aggregate output from invention/innovation with patents) is is less than than (value of profits from invention/innovation without patents + value of aggregate output from invention/innovation without patents)).

    While I think the free market can fund innovative research perfectly fine without the government (and while the government already funds tons of R&D and pharmaceutical corporations end up with the patents), I would much rather a system without patents where the government funds R&D than a system with patents (of course this shouldn't prevent the free market from funding R&D just as well and selling products based on what is produced from said R&D, I just don't think anyone should have a monopoly on what is sold). Granted, government funding will take money and labor away from other sectors of the economy, but if patents do stimulate R&D as patent defenders would say, that would also take jobs and labor away from other sectors of the economy just as well. Patents are worse than government funding because they prevent the free market from funding research on something once someone has a patent on it (or at least they give the free market much less incentive to fund R&D) and because monopolies cause a lot of economic loss (a dead weight loss to society).

    Now if the government did fund more R&D in place of patents and the government did a good job at finding solutions to problems then the free market may not fund R&D in areas where the government funds R&D exactly because the government has already found solutions to those problems.

    You may argue, "well, then R&D grants will become highly politicized." First of all, the government already funds R&D and pharmaceutical corporations end up with the patents; secondly, I'm not necessarily in favor of more government funded R&D and think the free market is perfectly capable of funding necessary R&D without patents; and thirdly, the patent system is just as susceptible to politics (ie: everyone wants to suddenly relocate their operations to East Texas before initiating a patent lawsuit).

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  43.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Apr 22nd, 2010 @ 9:39pm

    Re:

    and patent defenders who don't like the idea of the government funding R&D in place of patents because they like free market capitalism (despite the fact that the government already funds tons of R&D) are hypocrites because being in favor of patents itself is being against free market capitalism.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  44.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Apr 22nd, 2010 @ 9:49pm

    Re:

    Also, in the above economic explanation, in the case where patents do exist the patent holder is also considered to be a part of society.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  45.  
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    greg.fenton (profile), Apr 23rd, 2010 @ 10:43am

    Re: Re: Re: You dont know the difference between Invention and Innovation:

    Every other one is competing. They innovate by adding different features, better quality, more efficient (cheaper) manufacturing process, whatever.

    This is innovation. It is not invention (though one might argue that the cheaper process is invention, but the invention is not being brought to market, the innovation of a lower price on that particular invention is).

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  46.  
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    greg.fenton (profile), Apr 23rd, 2010 @ 10:47am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Innovation vs Invention

    Radical or revolutionary is not necessary. That is the "or" between "incremental emergent" and "radical and revolutionary".

    Innovation is doing something to attract the market. If it is simply a different color, and that is what the market goes for, then it is innovative. If everyone else is already offering different colors, then it is simply copying. Straight-out copiers rarely (ever?) win the market. You need to do something to distinguish yourself from the competition (i.e. innovate).

     

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  47.  
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    darryl, Apr 23rd, 2010 @ 12:04pm

    Innovate and Invention Continues

    Innovation: Is using something that allready exists for a different purpose than it was made for.

    It's as simple as that, nothing to do with marketing, patents, copyright, governments or anything else.

    Its using a coin to turn a screw or using a rock to break a nut.

    You dont need invention to innovate, but you can use what is allready existing (patented invention or not) to innovate to acheive a different result.

    Governments have always been heavily involved in R&D, most things stem from Government funded research.

    what market value is there in innovation if you use a rock to break a nut? None...

    BTW: inventors do not invent for the social good, they invent because thats what they like to do, and their reward is if they invent something that is socially benificial they will be rewarded for their work. (and probably give them enough money to fund further inventive work).

    If that inventor did not have the protection of patents, he would be forced to keep his invention secret, and try to profit it from it by forming his own monopoly.

    We would not be sold computers and software for example that you would be able to see inside, they would be sealed 'black boxes'. Where you have NO access to the IP, or the various inventions inside what you have.

    Imagine if that was the case with transistors, if there was no protection of patents.

    BELL labs would not have been able to announce that invention or license it to anyone else. It would out of force have been kept a tight trade secret. And the only place you would be able to buy any product that contained a transistor would be from Bell labs.

    No competition, and a total monopoly, they simply could not afford to destroy their cash cow and release the details of the invention to the public.

    So no INTEL, no AMD, no motorola and so on, just one big 'black box' monopoly that would only sell what they wanted too. Or not at all if they wanted too.

    Ive worked in military security communications, and I know that security trumpts patents, therefore the equipment made by NSA, are sealed, all the components on the PCB are sealed, and all spares are kept in locked boxes in safes. If you need to transport that equipment in public you must carry a gun and go with extra armed guards.

    Thats because they dont want anyone seeing how they do things, thats what would happen in the commercial world if there were no copyright or patent protections in place.

    The person who invented it (the thing) would be forced to keep his invention a secret for fear of someone else taking it and taking his work for their own gains.

    So, if you invent a machine that turns sand into diamonds then you can tell everyone and diamonds because dirt cheap and everyone has one of you're machines. Or you keep it a secret and make youre own diamonds and because very rich (and dont destroy the daimond market).

    Or you patent you're machine, and sell the license for it's use for a massive amount of money, so only a very few people can afford to use it. keeping the price of diamonds up and keeping you're invention of value.

    It's a model that works, it's always worked, and not to try to deny it's success or stating that the model should not be applied to specific area's is IMO wrong and illinformed...

     

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  48.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Apr 25th, 2010 @ 9:47am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Re: Innovation vs Invention

    so you are saying paris hilton washing a car is somehow brings innovation to the hamburger market? it got the markets attention where they turned and sold the same old product they sold for years. innovation indeed!

     

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  49.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Apr 25th, 2010 @ 9:49am

    Re: Re: Re: Re: You dont know the difference between Invention and Innovation:

    the point is the masnick wants to replace invention with innovation forgetting for a second that without the invention,they would be innovating nothing. innovation is duplication of an idea. ideas deserve protection. you want to copy the idea then pay for the right. that is why they have pantents and copyrights to encourage actual invention not mindless duplication aka paintjob innovation.

     

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  50.  
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    Carlos Barrera, Jul 30th, 2010 @ 7:07pm

    Tip Info / New Technology Submission - Gearturbine - Atypical

    This is a innovation, not imitation:

    http://gearturbine.260mb.com

    You Tube Video; Atypical New * GEARTURBINE / Retrodynamic = DextroRPM VS LevoInFlow + Ying Yang Thrust Way Type - Non Waste Looses

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0cPo9Lf44TE

    GEARTURBINE -Atypical Combustion Turbine Engine, -State of the Art, -New Thermodynamic Technology, -With Retrodynamic "Dextrogiro vs Levogiro" Effect, is when the inflow direction moves is against [VS] of the circular rotary dynamic, When the inflow have more velocity the rotor have more RPM / because push the single turbine with the planetary gear, (an a example is like to move the head to the side of the strike hit) / RPM Rotor Move VS Inflow Conduits Way /ACTION VS REACTION / Front to Front / Velocity vs Velocity, making in a simple way a very strong concept of power thrust, a unique technical quality. -Wide cylindrical shape dynamic mass (continue Inertia cinetic positive tendens motion / all the motor weight is goin with the power thrust direction), -Non Waste, parasitic losses form-function engine system for; cooling, lubrication & combustion; -Lubrication & Combustion inside a conduit radial position, out way direction, activated by centrifugal force Fueled Injected (centripetal to in) , -Cooling in & out; In by Thermomix flow & Out by air Thermo transference, activated by the dynamic rotary move, -Increase the first compression by going of reduction of one big circumference fan blades going to, -2two very long distance captive compression inflow propulsion conduits (like a digestive system) (long interaction) in perfect equilibrium well balanced start were end like a snake bite his own tale, -Inside active rotor with 4 pairs of retrodynamic turbos (complete regeneration power system), -Mechanical direct "Planetary Gear" power thrust like a Ying Yang (very strong torque) (friendly loose friction) 2two small gears in polar position inside a bigger shell gear, wide out the rotor circumference were have much more lever power thrust, lower RPM in a simple way solution for turbines, to make possible for a some new work application (land). -3 Stages of inflow turbo compression before the combustion. -3 points united of power thrust; 1- Rocket Flames, 2-Planetary Gear & 3-Exhaust Propulsion, all in one system. -2two continuous circular moving inside combustion (rocket flames) like two dragons trying to bite the tail of the opposite other. -Hybrid flow system different kind of aerolasticity thermoplastic inflow propulsion types; single, action & reaction turbines applied in one same system, -Military benefits, No blade erosion by sand & very low heat target profile. -Power thrust by barr (tube); air sea land & generation application, -A pretender of very high % porcent efficient power plant engine. -Patent; Dic 1991 IMPI Mexico #197187

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]


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