Modularity and Spontaneous Order

by on March 10, 2008 · 4 comments

Glen Whitman has a great post on the relationship between modularity and innovation. He’s exactly right that modularity (or what software types would call open standards) promotes progress by allowing people to build software from pre-existing components without worrying about exactly what’s inside any given component. One of the most important examples of modularity in the computer industry is the Internet’s end-to-end principle, which allows application developers to ignore the details of how to get packets from A to B, and instead focus on what to do with packets once they reach their destination.

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