Interesting view from Bob Frankston (whom, along with Dan Bricklin, we have to thank for spreadsheets) of the plumbing beneath/between all this crrrrazzzy online stuff. Bob was challenged to reduce his thinking "on infrastructure to four bullet points in five minutes." Excerpt from Frankston's Imperative:
In the 19th century people communicated by sending telegrams. The telegraph companies built their own infrastructures to support telegraph services. We built special infrastructures for telephones, television etc.
Today we use email, Twitter, Skype etc. We can represent all the content, voice, text or whatever as bits. Bits have no meaning in themselves – that comes from how people use them, not from the network. This means we can use a common infrastructure, a “Bit Commons”.
Yet we still use business models that date back to telegraphy. We have an expensive infrastructure designed to carry expensive messages yet all we are exchanging is bits. And we can’t even communicate unless we pay a provider a high price to do it for us.
We can look to our network of roads and sidewalks for a better model. With telegraphs and railroads you are charged for what you are saying or shipping. Roads don’t judge the content...