"Is there a thing whereof it may be said, See, this is new? it hath been long ago, in the ages which were before us."
"When Alexander saw the breadth of his domain, he wept for there were no more worlds to conquer." Hans Gruber... Die Hard.
— Jack Donaghy, 30 Rock
But before and before, and ever so long before
And such contrivances were used,
The whole Confucian sea-board had standardized the lee-board.
And hauled it up or dropped it as they choosed
— Rudyard Kipling, The Junk and the Dhow
A "new thinker," when studied closely, is merely a man who does not know what other people have thought.
— Frank Moore Colby
I have a scoop for you. I stole his act. I camouflaged it with punchlines, and to really throw people off, I did it before he did.
— Bill Hicks, commenting on similarities between his stand-up comedy routine and Denis Leary's.
"Jack Kirby" did it first and did it better.
Old comic creator's proverb.
"Nothing is created, everything is copiated."
— Chacrinha, Brazilian TV host and humourist. The grammar was sacrified to maintain the rhyme.
Abby: It's like Bill Nye.
Abby: TV scientist? Had a kids show?
Gibbs: Ah, like Mister Wizard.
That's right: The Bourne Identity was first a TV movie in 1988. Everything's a remake these days.
— Peter Paltridge, Platypus Comix's "Lost Art of TV Guide Advertising Vol. 6"note
Animals engage in a struggle for existence; for resources, to avoid being eaten and to breed. Environmental factors influence organisms to develop new characteristics to ensure survival, thus transforming into new species. Animals that survive to breed can pass on their successful characteristics to offspring.
— Arabic scholar Al-Jahiz, discussing the theory of evolution in the ninth century.
"He didn't only invent Kevin the Robot; Screech also patented the duckface. Done it in a selfie? You owe him $5.'
Percival: ...and, egad! What's this? A magical ball emiting light?
Onlooker: Uh, Percival... you had the electric light bulb in 1909!
Percival: Ah, but I am an idiot!
"With Moriarty, Doyle does such a brilliant job of writing a mafia don before they were invented. Every other supervillain ever since sounds like Moriarty. Goldfinger sounds exactly like Moriarty. He invented the supervillain. If you do him like that now, he sounds like the biggest cliche on earth."
"Reeve agreed to do the movie on the condition that [Golan & Globus] make Street Smart, a movie where Reeve plays a reporter who makes up a pimp for a human interest piece, and then Morgan Freeman claims to be the pimp, and he gets stuck in his lies. Which is basically The Wire Season 5 twenty years early, with a soundtrack by Miles Davis."
"It has been ages since anybody has focused on the psychology of the Borg and the three drones make for fascinating characters in both scenarios. Its disturbing to see the personalities of the people that were assimilated starting to assert themselves...Doctor Who flaunted the horror of making the people inside the Cybermen aware of what has become of them in The Age of Steel but Voyager got there first and did a much better job of it than just having someone say ‘I’m so sorry.’"
"In truth, the Zapper is in fact an extremely simple camera. When you pull the trigger, the screen flashes black, then white where the duck is. The photosensor inside the Zapper then judges whether or not it is looking at white light or not (comparing it to the previous image of a black screen) and registers the hit accordingly....The Zapper is a prototypic version of the Wii."
"About four hours in, I noticed myself backtracking to a lower level to grab a radiation suit that let me complete an objective on a higher level, and that's when it hit me: This is a Metroidvania game! But it can't be, right? It was made the same year as Super Metroid and three years before Symphony of the Night, and it's incredibly rare to see this kind of level design from first-person — but all the basic elements are there: You've got a honeycomb map locked up not just by keys but also by environmental hazards that character upgrades help you surpass; You have to reach earlier places that couldn't reach before because you didn't have the Lv. 3 Bio-suit or the rocket boots or whatever; you use those upgrades to uncover secrets from a growing game map that you never really leave behind, and your conditioned desire to uncover those secrets ends up telling you more about where you need to go and what you need to do than the actual characters do... System Shock is immersive like how Half-Life was immersive in 1998; System Shock just figured it out four years earlier. They figured out audio diaries, environmental storytelling, non-liner hub levels — they even figured out Silent Hill music before that was a thing!"