Open architecture is
|“||[a]n architecture that is compatible with hardware and software from any of many vendors.||”|
For example, the IBM PC and Apple IIe had an open architecture, whereas the Apple IIc and Amiga 500 computers had a closed architecture. In a closed architecture, the hardware manufacturer chooses the components, and they are not generally upgradable by the end user.
Open architecture allows potential users to see inside all or parts of the architecture without any proprietary constraints. Typically, an open architecture publishes all or parts of its architecture that the developer or integrator wants to share. The open business processes involved with an open architecture may require some license agreements between entities sharing the architecture information.
- Glossary of Communication Electronic Terms, at 2-112.
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