- Two Views of Innovation. Timothy B. Lee gives a nice overview of Schumpeterian and Hayekian innovation. I might be oversimplifying here, but my understanding is that Schumpeter advocated for induced innovation, meaning that macroeconomic factors, such as the prices of core inputs (oil, steel, etc.) "induce" innovation in certain sectors. Hayek's view is much evolutionary; firms use trial-and-error to eventually specialize in something. Lee then goes into an example using intellectual property rights, Apple, and Microsoft.
Lee, writing a blog called "Disruptive Economics" for Forbes, has some interesting thoughts on innovation and technology, so here are a few recent pieces:
- Skyscrapers Are Good for Startups. Similar to Tyler Cowan's Rule #1 for good ethnic food, Lee reflects on why cheap office space is good for innovation.
- Adam Thierer, Infrastructure Socialist. Why Verizon can dig up your lawn.
- Seeing Like a Cable Company. Lee presents a counterfactual history of Comcast, internet bandwidth restrictions, and YouTube; arguing that Comcast suffers from the same design flaws as large development schemes in Scott's Seeing Like a State.
Finally, on the topic of adoption of innovations, this article on what technologies get adopted in pro cycling is pretty interesting: "If it's so good, why don't the pros use it?" And then read the comments for a whole bunch of bicycle-related technical arguments :)