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Creating a Platform rather than tool

There are few things that I like the most because they are simple, elegant and flexible by writing plugins.

1) Eclipse
2) Jenkins
3) Firefox
4) Ubuntu


recently I started playing more with jenkins and the more I play with it the better my respect for it grows, same happened with eclipse or firefox or ubuntu.

The reason I think all of these are great is that they are a platform rather than tool. They allow users to plugin their own code seamlessly.  This way you get users to write code for your tool and as soon as one guy writes a plugin you see the network effect because other guys now has more reasons to use the platform.

Offcourse creating a platform is much harder than writing a tool but given a choice I would rather create a platform than just a tool.

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