Good artists copy but Great artists steal: Apple Versus Samsung (Picasso or Jobs ? )
So let’s get the quote thing straight: It was Picasso that came up with the quote.
“Good artists copy but Great artists steal” -Picasso
N O T Steve Jobs. But around the web (and for our category “Forums All Kind of talk) the geek fight of Apple users Versus Samsung users goes and goes and some seem to know how to handle google and a book better than others (in the quote department).
Picasso truly embodies this quote, as he did in fact “steal” ideas from his colleague, Braque. Though Picasso is probably best known for establishing Cubism, Braque was always a step ahead of Picasso. However, Picasso was much more of a prolific painter than Braque, so Picasso would work through a concept that Braque had come up with much faster than Braque himself. For example, Braque was the first one to begin using faux-bois (fake wood pattern) that was so crucial in the development of synthetic cubism, but it was Picasso who used it to attribute a different meaning to the pattern and further the idea of synthetic cubism. So it is undeniable that Picasso was a savvy artist, to say the least. Not to mention all the African Art that Picasso supposedly invented.
Merely copying isn’t particularly creative work, though it’s useful as training and practice. Being inspired by someone else’s idea to produce something new and different IS creative work, and it may even revolutionalize the “stolen” concept.
But note that there’s a difference between flat-out plagiarizing and meditating very creatively on an earlier artist. See below for a good example of the latter:
But the fun around the web on this discussion goes on and on :
It’s not the case that Samsung has made its products better. The hard work has been done by Google, which has steadily improved Android as a viable iOS competitor. Samsung’s hardware is subpar in many respects: lower quality screens (pentile), lower quality material construction, and so on. Samsung’s software has been universally assessed as poor, and its design language is muddled.
In any event, since Samsung hasn’t ever created or contributed meaningfully to the development of a product category, the comparison between Samsung and Apple is very inappropriate. The issue here is one of degree. Apple has certainly taken an iterative approach, but Apple has been primarily responsible for setting the course of multiple product categories. Conversely, Samsung has undertaken wholesale duplication of Apple’s products without making any iterative improvements.
Unfortunately Apple failed in its attempt to remedy Samsung’s behavior in court, and somewhat surprisingly, Samsung has used the lawsuits to its advantage in the media and in its marketing (including its shady marketing, such as paying students to talk down competitors like HTC and Apple). What is less surprising is that Samsung has been emboldened in its shameful copying, and we should probably expect the trend to continue.
But we can still call a spade a spade. Samsung is a shameless copyist.
bobrovsky on 04.30.13 9:02a