Nel suo “Where Good Ideas Come From: The Natural History of Innovation“ Steven Johnson ricorda che all’origine di ogni innovazione ci sono la capacità e la possibilità di combinare tra loro le buone idee. Mentre copyright, tecnologie proprietarie e altri “muri” non fanno che ostacolare questo processo.

The premise that innovation prospers when ideas can serendipitously connect and recombine with other ideas may seem logical enough, but the strange fact is that a great deal of the past two centuries of legal and folk wisdom about innovation has pursued the exact opposite argument, building walls between ideas. Ironically, those walls have been erected with the explicit aim of encouraging innovation. They go by many names: intellectual property, trade secrets, proprietary technology, top-secret R&D labs. But they share a founding assumption: that in the long run, innovation will increase if you put restrictions on the spread of new ideas, because those restrictions will allow the creators to collect large financial rewards from their inventions. [..]. The problem with these closed environments is that they make it more difficult to explore the adjacent possible, because they reduce the overall network of minds that can potentially engage with a problem, and they reduce the unplanned collisions between ideas originating in different fields.

[Amazon - Wsj]