Algorithms and the Changing Frontier

58 Pages Posted: 14 Apr 2014 Last revised: 3 Oct 2022

See all articles by Hezekiah Agwara

Hezekiah Agwara

affiliation not provided to SSRN

Adam Hasler

Independent

Brian D. Higginbotham

Independent

Multiple version iconThere are 2 versions of this paper

Date Written: April 2014

Abstract

We first summarize the dominant interpretations of the "frontier" in the United States and predecessor colonies over the past 400 years: agricultural (1610s-1880s), industrial (1890s-1930s), scientific (1940s- 1980s), and algorithmic (1990s-present). We describe the difference between the algorithmic frontier and the scientific frontier. We then propose that the recent phenomenon referred to as "globalization" is actually better understood as the progression of the algorithmic frontier, as enabled by standards that in turn have facilitated the interoperability of firm-level production algorithms. We conclude by describing implications of the advance of the algorithmic frontier for scientific discovery and technological innovation.

Suggested Citation

Agwara, Hezekiah and Hasler, Adam and Higginbotham, Brian D., Algorithms and the Changing Frontier (April 2014). NBER Working Paper No. w20039, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2424610

Hezekiah Agwara (Contact Author)

affiliation not provided to SSRN

Adam Hasler

Independent ( email )

Brian D. Higginbotham

Independent ( email )

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