I graduated my undergrad two years ago, and I have since published 4 papers in top computer science conferences and journals. However, all my papers seem to follow a common "scooping" pattern, where I would read an interesting paper, notice some possible improvements/speed ups in the algorithm published, type up the improvement, and submit it. This seems to have worked well for me so far.
I am planning to apply to graduate school, however, an old colleague in my research lab told me some graduate school admission committees might raise an eye brow at my research, since they all seem to "scoop" other researchers work, and not come up with new/original research directions.
My question is, how truthful is this? I feel what I have done should be considered original research, and not "scooping", as the original authors did not allude in the slightest (either in the paper or on online mediums like arxiv/twitter) that they were pursuing this problem further.