Web 2.01 Release Notes

It’s been over a week since the last “What is Web 2.0” meme made the rounds, which on the internet is a long time. So, it’s due for a minor revision (it is a perpetual beta, after all).

WEB 2.01 RELEASE NOTES

  • REVISION 1: It’s about providing something useful, not something trendy.
  • REVISION 2: It’s a mistake to rule out the desktop.
  • REVISION 3: Companies need to stop saying “mine” about stuff they have no right to own.

REVISION 1: It’s about providing something useful, not something trendy.

Pretty much every definition of Web 2.0 that I’ve seen talks about specific technologies such as Ajax. Ajax is cool, but Web 2.0 isn’t about the latest trend in technology – it’s about “harnessing collective intelligence,” involving customers in product development and taking advantage of the web’s distributed nature. If you can do that with Flash or any other “untrendy” technology, that’s great (unless they’re geeks, your customers won’t care as long as it works).

REVISION 2: It’s a mistake to rule out the desktop.

I rely on a number of excellent web apps and I expect to see the web continue to become the dominant application platform, but I believe reports of the death of desktop apps are greatly exaggerated. The future of the web isn’t entirely web-based.

Over the next few years we’ll see a number of new desktop apps which take advantage of the web as a platform, providing many of the benefits of a web app with the speed, usability and (in some cases) privacy of a desktop app. The next version of FeedDemon, for example, ties into an online API, and it enables customers to choose which data lives “out there” on the web and which stays private to their computer. We’re going to see much more of this.

As an aside, keep in mind how expensive it is to manage a web application. Think of all the great shareware programs you’ve used that were developed by one person, and then consider how that one person would handle the server costs of a popular web app. As it stands, the investment required to maintain a web-based app is greater (often far greater) than it is for a downloadable shareware product.

REVISION 3: Companies need to stop saying “mine” about stuff they have no right to own.

Everyone has the right to make a buck, but companies need to respect the fact that customers own their data. Companies whose business models require undermining fair use will find themselves undermined in return.

(OK, so that last one was pretty much spelled out in the original Web 2.0 discussion – I figured I’d just make it explicit.)

19 thoughts on “Web 2.01 Release Notes

  1. Server costs of a popular web app

    Both desktop and web apps have their place depending on lots of things. One thing I hadn’t considered as a small ISV though was the cost of getting popular. Nick Bradbury has a good quote. As an aside, keep in mind how expensive it is to manage a web a…

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  2. Suggested Revisions for Web 2.01

    Noting that Its been over a week since the last What is Web 2.0 meme made the rounds, Nick Bradbury offers up some Web 2.01 Release Notes. He makes the following three points, each followed by some discu…

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  3. Nick, I’m glad to hear you say that about companies not claiming what belongs to the users. All the more reason to use common formats, because inventing new ones makes it harder for users to move stuff around and is a less-visible way to own data. I see that happen all the time, and it’s hard to call the developers on it, because it’s so easy to confuse the issue. The developers have to really mean it, and care about it, not just talk about it.
    Also, I have a document prepared and public about OPML that you might find interesting, per the discussion we had here a couple of weeks ago.
    http://www.opml.org/guidelinesForValidation
    Hope the recovery is going well!!

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  4. I agree completely with “It’s a mistake to rule out the desktop”. People described Meebo, for example, as Web 2.0, which I feel is a completely technology-driven label. Meebo is certainly useful, but it’s not 2.0 just because it uses Ajax. It has no more interaction than you can get from a conventional instant messenger or IRC (Web 0.5?).
    A next-generation “Web 2.0” messenger would do something new, like allowing you to link your contacts with their latest Flickr photos, or their blog, or see what they’re added to del.icio.us recently. Simply (well, I admit it’s not simple) duplicating existing desktop applications online isn’t revolutionary enough.

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  5. Hello Nick – I use FeedDemon – and was a HomeSite user from way back (gooo Delphi!).
    Since I saw Dave in this thread (hi Dave) and it is Web 2.0/RSS related – I figured this is a good spot to ask you both how you feel about this:
    http://battellemedia.com/archives/001930.php
    I’m still trying to figure it out myself.
    I run a local community/citizen journalism hub that features an aggregator.

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  6. Web 2.01

    Nick Bradbury, der gute Mensch, der uns mit TopStyle und dem FeedDemon beglückt, hat eine ganz gute Definition vom Web 2.0 in die Welt gesetzt, die er als Web 2.01 betitelt. Es geht darum, etwas nützliches anzubieten, nicht etwas, was…

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  7. Web 2.0 takes a hit – a fundraiser to get behind – And Philadelphia loses one of its greats

    While Nick Bradbury shares some thoughts about what Web 2.01 should entail, something occured on Friday that is not being…

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  8. Revision 1: I think it helps the product if it’s trendy in the sense that people will jump on board. The new social web apps need a large user base to be effective, and utility only might just not cut it anymore.
    Revision 2: Unfortunately, I think you’re right. Most typical users will continue to purchase, download and install desktop software, whereas mainly power users (a small minority) will migrate away from desktop apps.
    Revision 3: Hope this happens. But companies are greedy. I think users will have to learn to choose the good companies from the bad.
    I’ve been doing some brainstorming on useful things here: http://web201.blogspot.com

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  9. Blog search showdown: Vanity Edition

    So today I came across Nick Bradbury’s TypePad blog–where he includes links to Google Blogsearch instead of the more commonly-utilized Technorati–to show who’s linking to him. This led me to contemplate our new post footer, with the added “Blogs’ Com…

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  10. Your prediction has already come true. To ingnore the desktop is foolish.
    Our new Blog Client integrates with Web 2.0 services Technorati, Google Blog Search, Del.icio.us, Furl.net, Flikr and Amazon today.
    We know we are the first of many to do the same.
    Desktop 2.0 is here.

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  11. The Hybrid Platform.
    The power of the desktop is important for user experience and will be for a very long time. We’ve developed a hybrid of a desktop application platform and web services platform with pipes in between. The result? Great user experience, the breadth of the web, and the ability to use tech like AJAX, COM, scripting, etc.
    SDK Alpha 1.0 coming in November.

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  12. I agree with Revision 2 about not ruling out the desktop and Charlie Crystle’s “hybrid platform”. Some things simply cannot be done in a web browser for network latency reasons or because the nature of the task consumes a lot of server CPU cycles. Everything else should be done remotely.
    However, for the things that cannot be done remotely, we can download the algorithm for how to do them remotely. This allows them to be updated more frequently, and having everyone on one version is easier to support.

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  13. Web 2.01

    Nick Bradbury, der gute Mensch, der uns mit TopStyle und dem FeedDemon beglückt, hat eine ganz gute Definition vom Web 2.0 in die Welt gesetzt, die er als Web 2.01 betitelt. Es geht darum, etwas nützliches anzubieten, nicht etwas, was…

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  14. Web 2.01

    Nick Bradbury, der gute Mensch, der uns mit TopStyle und dem FeedDemon beglückt, hat eine ganz gute Definition vom Web 2.0 in die Welt gesetzt, die er als Web 2.01 betitelt. Es geht darum, etwas nützliches anzubieten, nicht etwas, was…

    Like

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