What is the value of an idea? Though Steve Jobs and Apple are credited with the introduction of the iPad, it was not a new idea. Roger Fidler, the Director of Knight-Ridder Information Design Lab, and his team had mocked up a very similar-looking and working tablet fifteen years earlier—yes, fifteen years earlier. And, before that, Arthur C. Clarke spoke about a “Newspad” device as early as the 1960s.
Which brings to mind the fact that an idea or design is just a small part of a complex equation. To succeed in launching a new product or service, you, more often than not, will draw on the insights, inventions, and skills of many others. I dare say it should humble us.
Though tablets were clearly not a new idea when they first showed up in the early 2000s, making the iPad a reality required much new and innovative technology, the development of a groundbreaking interface design, ramping up of a massive manufacturing chain, a worldwide of sales and distribution network, and much, much more.
Is there value to intellectual property? Of course. But this is a great reminder of the fact that just thinking of an idea doesn’t make it a success.
Thanks to Jim Green for pointing us to it.
From 1994: The Tablet Newspaper: A Vision for the Future…