We're All Copy Cats

What I lack in today's product landscape is a bit of originality. It seldom appears and when found it's immediately copied. Surly the right term to be used is not "copied" but "improved", meaning adding useful features that eventually upgrade the product and make it more valuable.

The Remix of Everything

The remix of a song is something very common in the music industry. There are even remixed songs that sound a lot better or are even more successful than the originals. A recent example of that is Matt Simons hit song- "Catch and Release" that reached the top with the Deepend remix. Gotta love this song. 

In the product development world, especially in the digital one, the Remix is a very common practice too. Brian Arthur called it the "Combinatorial Evolution" but in the end it all comes to this: Digital Product Developers recombine simple earlier products or product genders with newer more complex ones to produce an unlimited number of new products. To me that sounds a lot like a "Reeeeeeeeemiiiiiixxxxxx". But to what extend does the art of the "Remix-ation of Everything" kill the originality and prevent the evolution? Hard to tell, but let me try to use some practical examples to explain my opinion. 

Project Oxford

We all could easily say that AI is what everybody is talking about lately. "AI this", "AI that". To ease up the creative process and to help developers enable natural and contextual interactions, Microsoft is opening their cognitive service platform to anyone who is keen on experimenting with machine-based AI. They called it "Project Oxford". So far a round of applause for the good fellows and Microsoft.

But here comes the best part. Looking into the applications that were already created using the Cognitive Services suite one may find: AI-empowerd alarm clock apps, health apps, photos apps and of course "Which celebrity do you look alike"-apps.

Coming back to the question above, I think independently of the technological evolution the needs of mankind will stay the same. I mean we all need to wake up, work-out, work, fall in love, sleep and know how much of Kim Kardashian is in each of us. It's human. And in a certain way, no matter how much we'll evolve, the basic products, the ones that are more tailored to our needs will stay the same. What changes is the interface, the way we interact and the business models behind. Therefore fortunately We're all Copy Cats. 

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Dan