I'm an innovator. I come from a line innovators. I was raised with it as an ethic and value it greatly, but I'm pretty sure that's not so normal. I wish it was though. One reason I think it's not normal is because I meet these one idea people. They have one idea. They whisper about their one idea and dream about it as though it were grand. They get upset if you should talk about it, as you might steal their one idea. It's laughable for me as an innovator to do that sort of thing. I want credit for my ideas, if they are used because I'd like to live off of that rather than a boring 9-5-er, but whispering about it is stupid. In my opinion, ideas come into the world at different points on the globe, not just in your head alone as the chosen one, and the world won't wait for you to move forward on the idea, if it's viable. In fact, if you haven't seen the idea proliferate, think really long and hard about why that is because chances are, someone already thought of it and tried to pursue it. Not saying if you have an idea don't pursue it, no, not at all, you should, but not as the last diamond left on Earth. I think of them more like this: my brain has only so much capacity. If I keep one idea in it, I make it so others can't fit. If I share ideas, then more can fit. Everyone knew Edison was working on a lightbulb, and yes, it was also parallelly invented. Same with airplanes. I'm sure I'm speaking to the choir here, but I want to say thank you to all the innovators here who let their ideas flow. May you keep growing in ideas.
Working in technology, I completely share your sentiment. Everyone believes their software idea is A Brand New Innovation™ and should be guarded like Fort Knox. I always try and remind these people that software has barely made any innovations past the spreadsheet. It's what most people use to get everything done, and what most software still aims to replace. Most software is losing.
I've long wished there was a better medium for sharing and iterating on ideas. I have my own personal workflow involving text documents and version control, but it's hardly a good model for the average person. I love how easy it is to clone someone else's software source code, modify it, and submit your changes to the author. I wish there was a similar method for ideas.
I don't have a lot more to add on this subject other than a few links that I really enjoy around this idea:
Last year at the annual awards banquet for our local Soil and Water Conservation District, our state Commissioner of Agriculture informed us that farmers are no longer sharing and he felt that was Maine's biggest issue facing farmers today. Considering all the plights that Maine farmer's have, to say that is intriguing.
I also took it to heart.
I started out 2017 by sharing a lot more on this forum, trying to always be honest, and lead people to more sustainable farm practices that worked for my farm at least.
We did Rock the Flock, which was a benefit concert to help struggling addicts find meaningful drug rehabilitation. It was not really anything to do with farming, but it did show we do care about those struggling with vices, and it showed that even as farmers we can use our farms to help our community.
We just did a forestry Tour of our woodlot since we are part of the American Tree Farm System and talked about a computerized tracking system for our timber growth, disease, harvest and windthrow losses, as well as our micro-sized equipment for timber management, and some of the many decisions we made on converting some of our woodlot to farmland.
I am teaching a adult education class on raising sheep
I am writing a book about taking a farm from beginner, or hobby farm status to the next level
These are just some of the ways this tiny farm is trying to take what the Maine Commissioner of Agriculture said and give it action. The solid truth is, no matter what I say, or how closely people follow it, every farm is so unique that profitability will depend on hard work and adapting methods that suit each individual farm. I need not worry one bit about sharing my farming ideas or techniques to others, and thus limiting my own farm in profitability for it...