in the Internet age, software has close to zero cost of replication and massive network effects, so there’s a positive feedback spiral that means that the first mover dominates.

Valve: How I Got Here, What It’s Like, and What I’m Doing | Valve

Uh, except for the fact that all of the examples given (Doom, Angry Birds, Words with Friends, Farmville) as proof of first-mover-advantage save one (Tetris) are hardly examples of “the initial creative act” or first mover. Each is a well executed evolution of an existing idea.

Really successful products are rarely, if ever, created by true pioneers. They’re much more akin to suburbanites. But that’s not nearly so aspirational an image, is it?