David Manning Posted almost 2 years ago To what extent can an idea be unique? My thoughts… how important is it to be "unique?" Think about how often inventions actually occur simultaneously and independently. Each inventor thought their invention was unique, and they were correct... based on what they knew at the time. Should the inventors still be proud of their inventions? Did they still meet expectations? The answer is probably “Yes!” As “ideators,” if our goals are to be novel, first, fresh, proud, or other internally-focused goals, then being unique is significant. However, if our goals are to provide better solutions, innovative results, and collaborative development, then we can be more effective since we are externally-focused and we give less significance to being unique. Additionally, as we evolve to products-of-one with 3-D printing, for example, being unique becomes more of a commodity and important at the consumer-level. However, if we are becoming exponential and less linear in technology growth, the faster we’ll be able to innovate. As that accelerated pace continues, being unique becomes less likely. So do we need to be unique? As consumers, we will be more unique as we move toward products-of-one. As innovators, we become less unique by sharing development with others. In both cases, we are winners.