A recent article in Business Week asks if design and innovation are commodities to be outsourced.
Some notable people responded yes. I disagree. I am surrounded in my office by innovations that were the lifeblood of the companies that created them. Design and innovation of leading edge products will always be a core competency that makes the difference in the fundamental value of an organization.
What I can agree to is that design of commodities is a commodity. So designing a standard PC or standard cell phone might be a commodity. But any company that expects to "farm out" the design of the next "iPod" is mortgaging their future in no uncertain terms.