Rivalry destroys open

Tim O’Reilly want’s it:

I wish that the various web services data vendors (including Amazon, Google, EBay, Salesforce.com, and many others) would realize that they comprise the building blocks of a future “internet operating system”, and act accordingly, engaging with each other to interoperate. It seems to me that the original Unix/Linux architecture, and the architecture of the internet, are based on a model of “small pieces loosely joined” (to quote David Weinberger). Web services can also operate on this model. However, there are alternate visions, including .Net and J2EE, in which there is a quest for “one ring to bind them all.” There’s a history in our industry in which application vendors mark out new territory, but then lose that territory to someone who figures out how to control that space with platform-level APIs. If instead, we can consciously keep to the current open standards model of the internet, we will continue to leave opportunities for new innovations, and new market entrants. Unfortunately, I worry that the competition between Amazon, Google and EBay will lead them rivalries that make them forget the foundation of their success in the open internet. (But I’m hopeful that the companies in question are smart enough to avoid this trap.)

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