August 31, 2006
@ 06:48 PM

I've slowly begun to accept the fact that the term Web 2.0 is here to stay. This means I've had to come up with a definition of the term that works for me. Contextually, the term still is meant to capture the allure of geek-loved sites like Flickr and Being "Web 2.0" means having the same characteristics features of these sites like open APIs, tagging and AJAX.

One of the things I've realized while reading TechCrunch and sitting in meetings at work is that there is a big difference between folks like Caterina Fake or Joshua Schachter and the thousands of wannabes walking the halls in Redmond and Silicon Valley. The difference is the difference between building features because you want to improve your user's experience and building features you've been told those features are how to improve your user's experience.

Everytime I see some website that provides APIs that aren't useful enough to build anything interesting I think "There's somebody who heard or was told that building APIs was important without why it was important". Everytime I see some website implement tagging systems that are not folksonomies I think "There's somebody who doesn't get why tagging is useful". And every single time I see some site add AJAX or Flash based features that makes it harder to use the site than when it was more HTML-based I wonder "What the fuck was the point?".

I guess the truth is that TechCrunch depresses me. There is such lack of original thinking, failure to empathize with end users and just general unawareness of the trends that led to the features we describe as being Web 2.0 in our industry today. Sad.


Thursday, August 31, 2006 8:41:29 PM (GMT Daylight Time, UTC+01:00)
come on man... that is harsh - "thousands of wannabes". some folks just don't have the means or the cojones to go it alone. that does not mean they aren't passionate about their work and striving to build products that their customers want.

but I do agree on the unnecessary ajax and useless api’s - there's some wasted cycles.

oh... and i dig techcrunch - it's a great vehicle for me to see what is going on outside my world of "wannabes" ;)
Friday, September 1, 2006 1:10:42 AM (GMT Daylight Time, UTC+01:00)
Commenter Kevin appears to need more cojones and/or dinero.

Meanwhile, I so agree with you. Your observations can be applied to a far wider range of human endeavor, though. Sheep are everywhere. They look down at goats and think they're so smart. But they're sheep. The VC's are looking for shepherds.

-- Bob (Bob Denny)
Friday, September 1, 2006 10:58:33 AM (GMT Daylight Time, UTC+01:00)
Dare, I totally agree on your post, but my feeling is that Microsoft still hasn’t got the idea of Web 2.0. Why?
On one hand MS seems to have a “me too” approach. It is copying good Web 2.0 offerings like MySpace. But there is nothing really innovative about apps like MSN Windows Live Spaces. It’s just a good combination of features that are already there. But MS should have the power to do more than good mashups.
On the other hand I agree with Joe Wilcox that MS is still trying to pull as much as possible to the desktop in order to preserve the relevance of its cash cows, Windows and Office. This is against my understanding of Web 2.0 being a platform for any kind of application (this is an incomplete description of Web 2.0, of course).
Third, MS seems to look at Web 2.0 from a business perspective. It is asking questions about enhancing user experience, not taking into account aspects like user generated content . Let me give an example: At conferences I’m used to being told by the organizers which tags to use for live blogging, photos, etc. Not so at MS conferences.
Can you give me any hints, that I’m wrong?
Monday, September 4, 2006 2:46:11 PM (GMT Daylight Time, UTC+01:00)
Messenger api is good example. crippled so you have to buy bot hosting or use someone elses kit. Can't build useful things with it withotu possibly getting jiggy with GAC and bypassing security. Not pretty.
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