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Platform Ecosystems by Amrit Tiwana

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Chapter 5

Platform Architecture

Abstract

This chapter provides a foundation for understanding platform architectures. It begins by explaining how complexity stymies innovation and leads to an unrealistic optimism bias in platform ecosystems. It then describes how a platform’s architecture can make growing complexity manageable by serving two functions, partitioning innovation tasks and facilitating reintegration of an ecosystem’s parts. We explain the connections between a platform’s architecture and the “microarchitecture” of its apps. We then describe properties of good architecture: simplicity, resilience, maintainability, and evolvability. We also explain the two mechanisms for modularizing architectures along with practical guidelines ...

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