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If you’re a user of Digg, you should know that it recently redesigned and relaunched its website. This in itself is not that interesting since we always knew that was coming soon – however, what is interesting is that new categories have been added which make the site more useful to a wider audience.
On the topic of blogging, it seems worthwhile to talk a little about the blogging ecosystem, both for discussion and future reference (things change fast!). Like an ecosystem, blogging is a feedback mechanism, is most useful when you understand what is being said about you on the blogosphere, and unlike an ecosystem giving freely is more beneficial.
Paul Graham, one of the founders of web incubator Y Combinator, says we’re not in a bubble, and he’s right. There’s way too much talk about this mythical bubble. It ain’t a bubble, folks.
However, I think Paul is wide of the mark on a number of his assertions made when interviewed by Ian Delaney, who is currently writing a book on Web 2.0. Paul says he has spotted “a social trend that will last”, namely: “the startup world will increasingly be ruled by technical people rather than business people”.
I’m amazed that a savvy investor would think that way. Paul is a hacker himself of course, and a successful entrepreneur to boot, so I could be wildly out on this one. It just seems… wrong… on… so… many… levels…
TechCrunch posts a heads up on ActiveCollab, a new open source alternative to popular online project management tool Basecamp, by Web 2.0 poster children 37Signals, and talks about the possible threat to current monopoly and current business model if the software is of high quality.
E-consultancy analyst Linus Gregoriadis last week solicited suggestions on a sexier name for "web analytics". But five new Web 2.0 services currently brewing in beta are threatening to take the whole online marketing measuring practice into a more sexy paradigm entirely.
So what are these new tools? Let's take a look...
I’ve been dealing with a few clients of late, most of which have heard the ruckus around this newfangled Web 2.0 thing, and most of which want to do something Web 2.0 with their projects. Some want to implement blogs, others are interested in Wiki’s and podcasting, and surprisingly most of them want some Ajax features. The list goes on.
That’s really good because I’m always happy to talk to people about getting more out of the web, specifically around creating better and more valuable user experiences, but the problem I have (and which I communicate) is that Web 2.0 doesn’t just stop at implementing a blog engine, podcasts, a Wiki or Ajax.
Web 2.0 means different things to different people, yet it isn't just about the web, but is also about how your organisation works. Think intranet, as well as internet. Does your organisation work in a 2.0 way?
At the moment there seems to be three primary focuses around Web 2.0:
1) there are the technologists who are figuring out new technologies (there are many libraries and frameworks out there already).
2) there are the marketers and entrepreneurs, who are trying to figure out how use new 2.0 technologies and principles to generate profits, or help empower consumers (call them business people for now) in some way.
3) and finally, there are the users, who are increasingly using and enjoying the results of these new technologies.
But how does all that filter into your organisation in a useful way, feeding into your own innovation cycle?
David Tran has launched an Ajax driven route finder widget for London tubes, with Rails driving the backend. And it works pretty much as it says on the tin too!
Last week Maurice Saatchi did an interview with the FT talking about the “strange death of modern advertising”. According to Maurice “Sometimes I feel as though I am standing at the graveside of a well-loved friend called advertising”.
I’m not sure many of us would mourn the death of advertising, but his solution? “One word equity”. Mmm… sounds like a very expensive ad campaign is required to achieve that…? What is he on about?
The Internet Advertising Bureau (IAB) has launched its latest initiative to understand more about the online behaviour, in a bid to provide advertisers with “a holistic understanding of what, where and how people are accessing the internet”.
The Holy Grail for the IAB is to provide “a single online planning currency” for marketers, to help them “plan their online brand campaigns against traditional media”.
The IAB has teamed up with National Readership Surveys (NRS), which will add an online element to the 3,000 face-to-face interviews it does each month with random consumers: “Areas covered in the study will include; demographic information, frequency of internet usage, where people are going online and how they are accessing the internet - for example by PC or through mobile devices.”
The trouble is, I don’t think this is what online media planners need...
When the big tech brands like Amazon start using Ajax to improve their user interface you know the tipping point has been reached. So how long will it be before the great and good embrace Fjax, aka ‘Ajax 2.0’?
It used to be that there was this top down content pyramid in operation (operated by traditional media and the big online players), where the quantity and quality of news / content was controlled by relatively fewer organisations.
This is changing rapidly, becoming flatter and more diverse (we’re not really interested in the why’s right now), which can either be seen as an opportunity or a threat. Organisations that embrace this change are going to benefit (think Murdoch buying MySpace), so the question then becomes how one capitalises on the opportunity...
Let's look at some of the key strategic issues to consider.