DIMACS TR: 99-09
Smart and Stupid Networks: Why the Internet Is Like Microsoft
Author: Andrew Odlyzko
Is the Internet growing primarily because it is a dumb network, one
that simply delivers packets from one point to another? Probably not.
If were a dumb network, we surely would not need huge and rapidly
growing ranks of network professionals. A more detailed look suggests
that the Internet is succeeding largely for the same reasons that led
the PC to dominate the mainframe, and are responsible for the success
of Microsoft. Like the PC, the Internet offers an irresistible
bargain to a crucial constituency, namely developers, while managing
to conceal the burden it places on users.
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