The Economic Properties of Software
Software is a good with very special economic characteristics. Taking a general definition of software as its starting-point, this article Â systematically elaborates the central qualities of the commodity which have implications for its production and cost structure, the demand, the contestability of software-markets, and the allocative efficiency. In this context it appears to be reasonable to subsume the various characteristics under the following generic terms: software as a means of data-processing, software as a system of commands or instructions, software as a recombinant system, software as a good which can only be used in discrete units, software as a complex system, and software as an intangible good. Evidently, software is characterized by a considerable number of economically relevant qualitiesâ€”ranging from network effects to a subadditive cost function to nonrivalry. Particularly to emphasise is the fact that software fundamentally differs from other information goods: First, from a consumerâ€™s perspective the readability and other aspects concerning how the information is presented, is irrelevant. Second, the average consumer/user is interested only in the funtionality of the algorithms but not in the underlying information.
|Date of creation:||04 Jun 2008|
|Date of revision:|
|Contact details of provider:|| Postal: |
Phone: +049 3641/ 9 43000
Fax: +049 3641/ 9 43000
Web page: http://www.jenecon.de
More information through EDIRC
This item is featured on the following reading lists or Wikipedia pages:
- Open-source software in Wikipedia English ne '')
- Software in Wikipedia English ne '')
- Portal:Freie Software/Literatur in Wikipedia German ne '')
- Open source in Wikipedia English ne '')
- Software de código aberto in Wikipedia Portuguese ne '')
- オープンソースソフトウェア in Wikipedia Japanese ne '')
- User:Ajy019/sandbox in Wikipedia English ne '')
- Perisian sumber terbuka in Wikipedia Malay ne '')
- User:Neilmeena in Wikipedia English ne '')
When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:jrp:jrpwrp:2008-045. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.
For technical questions regarding this item, or to correct its authors, title, abstract, bibliographic or download information, contact: (Markus Pasche)
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.