Competitive Reproduction

Sunday, October 9th, 2005 at 00:16 +0000 (UTC) by Alexander Kirk

We've seen it serveral times in history. Company A launches a new, innovative product and company B takes it, copies it and wins the competition.

Not that we have come so far in just such a short time of AJAX apps but there are quite a few examples:

A nice conversation or rather a little fight on words has started between the listed writing apps: an article in TechCrunch reported about Zoho Writer. In the comments for this article Jason Fried of 37signals (author of Writeboard) and Sam Schillace (from Writely) seem very annoyed about "such blatant rips".

But haven't we seen this earlier? Competition keeps the market alive. You cannot rest on your laurels. You have to prove that you deserve the predominant position. So if such a competitior beats you with your own product you have done something wrong, or simply waited to long. See IBM vs. Microsoft 1980, Microsoft vs. Google 2005. If you're better anyway you don't have to fear a thing.

Some interesting thoughts about this can be found at Bokardo: Web-based Office Competition Heats Up.

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