Tuesday, June 05, 2007

Web 2.0 versus Web 3.0

So I think I can summarize why Web 2.0 is coming to an end and we're ready for Web 3.0

Web 2.0 was about opening up User-Generated Content ("UGC"). The barriers to create and propagate content (including entire websites) have dropped so low, that we're awash in UGC. We have a handful of sites that have become dominant aggregators of UGC and their focus must now be connecting their customers to the content they want in the most painless way possible. The role of aggregator and mashups have created a new relationship for all media. There was VERY LITTLE actual technology built in the Web 2.0 world.

Web 3.0 will be technology-driven and about creating reputation and order for UGC. eBay's purchase of StumbleUpon, our creation and subsequent licensing discussions of our new UGC reputation management system all speak to the beginning of Web 3.0.

Web 2.0 will continue to propagate content. But there will be very few new winners though the Web 2.0 establishment will crown many new "micro-winners:" Winners who rise to the top within specific sites.

But the new play is in Web 3.0. And it should be exciting and refreshing that the discussion is returning to real technology. At least for some of us.

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cant you just say that web 2.0 is evolving then? I dont think this is a completely different web that you describe.. just an altered web 2.0 world.
I honestly believe that a lot of Web 2.0 is threatened by the proliferation of low-quality UGC. Furthermore, wisdom of the crowds isn't that wise (i.e. gaming of the system).

So without new technologies designed to manage reputation of both the people AND the content in ways that are authoritative, that noise is going to become destructive.

So, to your point: I'll say: Web 2.0 isn't over (yet) but must evolve or die.
Naming is semantics... just like branding. It's innovation that keeps an audience.

Reputation & aggregation - essentially creating new models for 'programming' (to use old TV parlance, not coding) to bring the best content from multiple sources to specific niches in a seamless, high-quality user experience. That's web 2.x/3 etc.

So far web2.0 has combined existing technologies to make the aggregation possible... and reputation follows those with the highest quality programming (though reputation doesn't yet flow transparently and cross-site like access to the raw data)... but there is a great deal of room for improvement in experiencing the content: to take all this data and form new models of interaction with it.
There's one key thing here that really, deeply resonates for me: the fact that you chose to include "reputation" as one of your anchors for the next wave of innovation.

Something about this post helped me to start pulling together some of the threads that have been twining through the back of my mind of late.

Pardon me while I point to myself, but I took a crack at exploring the need for a Web 3.0 "Personal Reputation Management" system here.
Web 3.0 will be defined by a sizable increase quality. On the technical side there will be increases in the quality of tools that help you find the UGC you want, and the ease to which we interact with it. Audio and Video streams will become broadcast quality and will be consumed on multi-platform devices. All this will lead to a major reduction in the current UGC addiction. After the hangover, less will be consumed but at a much high technical and creative quality.

Web 3.0 will be about Quality Generated Content "QGC".

Ok that's the most times I have worked the word quality in to a post.
The irony of web 2.0 is that it uses a "dot release" nomenclature. I thought version numbers are longer supposed to be so important as we adopt rapidly iterative evolutionary models of development. I'm curious to see where this discussion will be in 5 years: while I find that the term Web 2.0 has been useful shorthand for discussing a whole raft of significant changes in the technology enabling informatics it is really rather useless (if fact a source of confusion) beyond that. Do we really need Web 3.0? How does this help me understand the world of the web?
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