TECH TALK: Two 2.0 Events: Web 2.0 Summit

The Web 2.0 Summit took place last week in San Francisco. Almost in parallel, was a 1-day Mobile 2.0 conference. In a sense, these are the two defining trends around us the next upgrade of the Internet for the desktops and mobiles. In this weeks Tech Talk, I will summarise the discussions that took place drawing from bloggers and people who attended. I find this a good way to get a snapshot of what happened being far away in Mumbai. Let us begin with Web 2.0.

Here is the introduction from the Web 2.0 Summit site on what the objectives of the event, now in its third year, were:

What began as a focused gathering on the implications of the Web becoming a platform has transformed into an industry event focused on the latest Internet innovationsthe services, applications, businesses, and modelsthat are redefining the way companies do business and how people live.

In 2004, Web 2.0 focused on one big idea: The Web has become a platform, a foundation upon which thousands of new forms of business would emerge. In 2005, at the second annual Web 2.0 Conference, we focused on the idea of Revving the Web – with the platform in place, we highlighted emerging innovations, with a particular emphasis on the entertainment, communications and IT industries.

This year, we’re thinking even bigger. It’s clear that major swaths of the global economy are in significant flux. Now that the Web has become a robust platform with countless innovations driving its ongoing development, widespread disruptions in traditional business models are well underway. The telcos are under siege from VoIP and bandwidth hungry content companies. Entertainment and publishing companies are struggling with consumer-driven media and the attention economy. And the IT giants – Microsoft chief among them – are in a battle for their lives with the give it away free and monetize it with ads model of Yahoo! and Google.

As a lead-up to the event, OReilly released a 100-page report entitled Web 2.0 Principles and Best Practices by John Musser. From the executive summary:

Web 2.0 is here today, yet its vast disruptive impact is just beginning. More than just the latest technology buzzword, its a transformative force thats propelling companies across all industries toward a new way of doing business. Those who act on the Web 2.0 opportunity stand to gain an early-mover advantage in their markets. OReilly Media has identified eight core patterns that are keys to understanding and navigating the Web 2.0 era. This report details the problems each pattern solves or opportunities it creates, and provides a thorough analysis of market trends, proven best practices, case studies of industry leaders, and tools for hands-on self-assessment. To compete and thrive in todays Web 2.0 world, technology decision-makersincluding executives, product strategists, entrepreneurs, and thought leadersneed to act now, before the market settles into a new equilibrium. This report shows you how.

Whats causing this change? Consider the following raw demographic and technological drivers:

One billion people around the globe now have access to the Internet
Mobile devices outnumber desktop computers by a factor of two
Nearly 50 percent of all U.S. Internet access is now via always-on broadband connections

Combine drivers with the fundamental laws of social networks and lessons from the Webs first decade, and:

In the first quarter of 2006, signed up 280,000 new users each day and had the second most Internet traffic
By the second quarter of 2006, 50 million blogs were creatednew ones were added at a rate of two per second
In 2005, eBay conducted 8 billion API-based web services transactions

These trends manifest themselves under a variety of guises, names, and technologies: social computing, user-generated content, software as a service, podcasting, blogs, and the readwrite web. Taken together, they are Web 2.0, the next-generation, user-driven, intelligent web.

Tomorrow: Web 2.0 Core Patterns

Published by

Rajesh Jain

An Entrepreneur based in Mumbai, India.