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Founders of ‘BioBricks’ approaches to synthetic biology have their origins in the computer industry. They emphasise the inter-convertability of genetic information and material, enabled by DNA sequencing and synthesis technologies. Calvert argues that these influences have led to an explicit attempt to make synthetic biology more similar to software code which is modular, standardized and re-useable. The modular entities produced by synthetic biology are ideal for open source because they can be worked on simultaneously by a large community of both users and producers, and this can speed the development of the field.