re: What do you do if you're in the middle of a project and you realize it already exists in the world? VIEW POST

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It depends on the purpose of the project. Is it for you to learn? Then you can think of the other project as confirmation that the idea is sound, take a look at it for ideas, then keep working on your own. If the project is an open source project that you just discovered, is it close to your original idea? Then consider maybe contributing to that project as well. Is it very different - implementation wise? Then move forward with your project and offer to collaborate with the other one. Are you making this for profit? Perhaps to sell? Then again you see that your idea is good because someone else seems to think so enough to make something with it. Your goal now is to not only match the other project for features, but to surpass it. If you want folks to use yours instead, it has to be faster, more features, easier to use, and less expensive. If you aren't willing to do those things, then you will be wasting your time (unless, as I said, you are doing this to learn). There's nothing wrong with having lots of different versions of the same kind of project. Look how many text editors there are! Your choices are collaborate, compete, or capitulate.

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