September 7th, 2005
Usually, we’re not like this. We don’t get too excited about the new technologies that are introduced.
After all, we never really got excited about mobile computing.
Or, ubiquitous technology.
Or, speech technology.
Or, rich media.
Or, tablet computers.
None of these things excited us enough to really pay attention. When clients would come to us and say, “What are you thinking about designing for handhelds?”, we’d just say, “That’s not our area of expertise. We haven’t looked at it yet.”
NASA’s a client and they have a saying about the technology they use: “It has to be old enough for the Space Program.” NASA likes proven technology for their spaceships and I guess we’re very similar. We don’t like to look at something until it’s been around and proven to be something more than hype or a fad.
So, why are we so excited about Web 2.0? After all, it’s really new. So new that nobody can really explain what it is. And, for something you can’t buy or touch, it’s getting a lot of attention — hype, some might even call it.
The thing that excites us the most is what people are doing with it. We’re seeing interesting new applications appearing out of nowhere, all because of this new platform and its capabilities.
It could be that we’ve drunk the Kool-Aid on this Web 2.0 stuff. It could be that we’re falling victim to yet another rush into the unknown. But, from where we stand, it looks like, as they say in the biz, this thing has legs.
Time will tell though. And we’ve been tricked before. We thought Flash was going to be a much bigger player in web interfaces than it currently is. It’s still strong, but not the dominant force in the marketplace.
In the meantime, I think it makes sense to really understand what this Web 2.0 thing is and what it could mean, if it were to catch on. It looks like it can give real advantages to people needing to get sophisticated applications running in a hurry. And that’s always a good thing.
Have you looked at the Web 2.0 platform yet? Are you doing anything with it? Does it intrigue you? Scare you? Bore you? I’d really be interested in your thoughts. Pop me an email at email@example.com. (Sometimes we publish these messages in UIEtips or on the Brain Sparks blog. Mention if you don’t want your name published, on the off chance we pick yours.)
Joshua Porter will be talking about Web 2.0 and why we need to pay attention to it as part of his presentation at the User Interface 10 Conference. This session is almost full, so you should sign up soon if you want to hear what he has to say. (I’ll be co-presenting with him. Details here.)Tweet