Friday, January 5, 2007

Enrique Ortiz on the Future Web

I ran across this blog post from C. Enrique Ortiz on the future of the web, and I thought it was spot-on. His post fits very well with the themes of may last few posts. Ortiz points to the importance of search, and find-ability, when he says:

O'Reilly skipped a whole revolution - the web (indexing and) search revolution. This is an "information accessibility" revolution. This search revolution and tipping point is the true Web 2.0.

Ortiz goes on to amplify his conception of search as a richer built-in intelligence:

Natural and Intelligent Web, where we will be able to use natural expression/language, and where based on our context and semantics, the web tools are able to suggest or find related information, where all your related information is intelligently connected allowing for smart ways to find, consume and share information and goods;

I agree with this, but I sense a tendency in Web2.0 writing to rely to much on a Web1.0 point of reference. Are we doing the same, relying on Web2.0 to describe Web3.0, or is Web3.0 going to be so different that these sorts of comparisons become unhelpful? What I'm getting at is this idea that Web3.0 is about better, smarter delivery of content through better interfaces, and smarter web sites that can also display on mobile. Maybe Web3.0 is where the whole browser model finally falls away? I say that more to get out my own mental rut, I'm quite sure we'll still be browsing happily on Web3.0, but 'What if?' questions can be a good springboard.

Nova Spivack described Web3.0 in his article on as a broader collection of technologies, which I will summarize as:

  • Ubiquitous Connectivity - pervasive, always-on wireless networks
  • Network Computing - software as a service, grid, distributed computing, and utility computing
  • Open Technologies - open data, formats, and API
  • Open Identity - portable identity and reputation across networks, and across platforms, api, and services.
  • Intelligent Web - semantic web technology, intelligent agents
Notice that this Web3.0 view is in the same key as the Fifth Wave concepts I alluded to in an earlier blog post. I do think we've got all these memes describing one concept, the combination of a set of technologies captured in the combined effect of the above trends. I'd add, again, this idea of the merging of the physical world with the virtual world, and the coming explosion of 'stuff' talking on the internet that hasn't been there before...thermostats, light bulbs, cars, bathtubs, rain gauges, stop lights...who knows. I'd also add a fresh look at HCI in this new web era. I still think we talk about everything from the perspective of the browser, and that is one thing we'll need to shake off.

Good stuff from two good writers!

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