Motivation for Proposing Ideas

by havoc

One of the more annoying properties of the Internet is that no matter
what you post to your blog (or mailing list, or chat) people add
comments like: “that isn’t new, the Amiga had it in 1987” or “that
isn’t new, we did that with punch cards in 1953” or “Longhorn has that
already” or whatever. These comments are especially popular in places
like osnews and slashdot.

I usually add a disclaimer to my posts specifically to head this off,
but it never helps. (Shocking!)

Why post ideas? It’s not to get credit for originality. It’s because
in this specific context, at this specific time, we should discuss
and possibly implement those ideas

Side point: there’s much to be gained by simply doing something
than it’s been done in the past. Apple’s new Pages app,, there are countless examples. They aren’t really “new
ideas” per se, they are well-done and tasteful composites of many old
ideas. And they were finished, and made available. Not a trivial thing
in the modern software industry.

(This post was originally found at

My Twitter account is @havocp.
Interested in becoming a better software developer? Sign up for my email list and I'll let you know when I write something new.