If you haven’t noticed the web world around you, some new and exciting things are taking place. I’m referring to Web 2.0 – or what we are coining the second phase of architecture and application development for the web (RSS, APIs, Ajax, tagging, etc.). Gone are the days of Ofoto, Napster, Britannica Online and Netscape... now are the days of Flickr, iTunes, Wikipedia and Google. Web 2.0 is essentially the foundation we’re creating the social web upon. You know what it is without knowing it, but now you know the name.
Like I mentioned, it’s an exciting time. We’re not being guided by the major players (Microsoft, Yahoo!, Google, etc.) any more... if you have an idea, you can capitalize on it and potentially make money on it. This isn’t just small potatoes stuff, either. I wrote an entry on American Copywriter about Newsvine and CNN’s article about the Next Net 25 – 25 startups that are helping reshape/reinvent the web. Clearly there is some very progressive thinking going on.
And it’s not just being noticed by “lame” bloggers like myself. Case in point, Yahoo! buying Flickr. Case in point, Google buying Keyhole and Measure Map. Case in point, Fox buying MySpace. Seeing a trend here?
Yes, the web is being reinvented and we’re all benefiting from it. We’re all getting closer, meeting new people, learning new things... all at the expense of actually stepping outside of our homes and living a little bit.
Seriously, the more we get immersed into Web 2.0, the more I feel we lose touch with our actual surroundings. There are so many new and cool things on the web that I want to take part of, but I simply don’t have the time to dedicate to it. I already have accounts with LiveJournal, MySpace, Friendster, TagWorld and Flickr – but I have no time to do anything with all of them. Today, I created a profile with 30 Boxes and almost created profiles at Flagr, 43 Things and 43 Places.
Why does there need to be so many different things to do and understand? Where’s my time to do any of it? I’m already overwhelmed with trying to learn how to effectively work Delicious, Digg, Magnolia and Technorati, why does there need to be more than that? “Just because,” is the answer.
I think with this new onslaught of technology, we’re becoming a bit redundant. Aren’t CalendarHub, HipCal and Planzo the same as 30 Boxes? Aren’t Riya and BubbleShare the same as Flickr? Isn’t Frappr the same as Flagr? What is better, Upcoming.org, Eventful or evite? Which would you prefer, Delicious Library or Listal? There’s just too many good ideas and WAY too many betas out there (and I don’t even want to go into the beta syndrome discussion).
I’m all for this progression and connecting people in ways they’ve never encountered. But really, Web 2.0 has quickly jumped from cool to overwhelming in just the last year. There will probably be another large shake-down eventually with the smaller, or less dedicated, players falling off... that’s just the nature of the biz.
Ultimately, what I’d like to see happen is this, the bigger players (like Google and Yahoo!) jumping in and snatching some of these guys up and creating a universal login where you can access all of this stuff (photos, maps, calendars, movie and restaurant reviews, etc.). I’m not saying that I will (or that you should) boycott the Web 2.0 stuff. I’m just saying that until things become more centralized, I just don’t have the time to dedicate helping all of them round out and become truly great – I have a non-digital life to attend to.