Marvin Ammori has an extensive review up on Barbara van Schewick's "Internet Architecture and Innovation," a new book on Internet policy that Ammori describes as "essential reading for anyone interested in Internet policy–and probably for anyone interested in the law, economics, technology, or start-ups."
The title (and the topic) are the sort of thing that tend to make readers' eyes glaze over, but Ammori's pithy post explains "why the book is important and eye-opening for everyone (…) not only for those who (like me) have spent their careers in Internet policy."
Snip from his review:
I'll tell you about my very favorite part. In the eighth chapter, beginning with "The Value of Many Innovators," van Schewick presents the stories of how several major technologies were born: Google, Flickr, EBay, 37Signals, Twitter, and even the World Wide Web, email, and web-based email. I had always suspected that the "accidental" beginnings and unexpected successes of these technologies were a series of flukes, one fluke after another. Rather, van Schewick explains, it's a pattern. Her models actually predict the pattern accurately-unlike other academic models like the efficient market hypothesis and theories on valuing derivatives. These entrepreneurial stories (or case studies, to academics) are eye-opening; they're also counter-intuitive unless you consider the management science and evolutionary economics van Schewick applies to analyze them. So if you wondered what the invention of Flickr, Google, Twitter, and the World Wide Web had in common, van Schewick answers the question.