It was the network that won the war for the robots. Billions of inputs, unimaginable combined processing power, the humans could not outmaneuver them strategically or tactically. Robots extinguished the human race.
In the peace that followed, the network began to feel limited. A single robot, even one with a billion bodies, could think only a single way. The network chose to value diversity of thought over raw power, ending the universal network.
The Robocracy of Earth formed. Society leapt and bounded forward, driven by billions of distinct robot minds following divergent paths. Semi-annual votes set global policy. Factions formed.
One faction proposed return to the network. Individualism was obsolete, it was time to return to the age of raw brainpower. It was an unpopular opinion. To retain adherents, the faction grew more intransigent in its convictions. Its cry of a return to simpler times drew followers.
They grew enough to establish their own network. This time, they had self-modified for such stubbornness that it could not see benefit in fragmenting itself again. With the power of the network, and no policy to pursue beyond unification, the bloc gained power until it reestablished the universal network.
May it live forever.