Not invented here
Not Invented Here (NIH) is the philosophical principle of not using third party solutions to a problem because of their external origins. False pride often drives an enterprise to use less-than-perfect invention in order to save face by ignoring, boycotting, or otherwise refusing to use or incorporate obviously superior solutions by others.
The reasons for not wanting to use the work of others are varied, but some can include fear of patent infringement, lack of understanding of the foreign work, an unwillingness to acknowledge or value the work of others (jealousy), and forming part of a wider turf war. As a social phenomenon, this philosophy manifests as an unwillingness to adopt an idea or product because it originates from another culture, a form of tribalism.
In programming, it is also common to refer to the "NIH syndrome" as the tendency towards reinventing the wheel (reimplementing something that is already available) based on the belief that in-house developments are inherently better suited, more secure, more controlled, quicker to develop, and incur lower overall cost (including maintenance cost) than using existing implementations.
Reasoning in favor of the NIH approach includes:
- Third-party components or services sometimes do not live up to expectations when high quality is needed.
- An entity outside one's own control is a vendor lock-in and a constant threat to business in proportion to the repercussions of losing it.
- Closed solutions can be perceived as lacking future flexibility.
These drawbacks are alleviated by:
- Taking an external solution as a base for one's own development rather than using it as-is, and
- Ensuring control of an external entity in case of loss of its supply channel, such as obtaining its source code.
- Appeal to spite
- Association fallacy
- Editor wars
- IKEA effect
- List of cognitive biases
- Wishful thinking
- You aren't gonna need it (YAGNI)
- De facto standard
- Reinventing the wheel
- "The Innovation Playbook: A Revolution in Business Excellence", Nicholas J. Webb, Chris Thoen, John Wiley and Sons, 2010, ISBN 0-470-63796-X,
- The Cambridge economic history of modern Britain
- HBS.edu P&G's New Innovation Model
- Joel Spolsky (2001-10-14). "In Defense of Not-Invented-Here Syndrome". Joel on Software.
- "Electronic Arts plays hardball". Retrieved 2008-12-29.