Just read David Lemphers blog:
I agree that most of the Sites labeled Web 2.0 are not exactly mind altering and most cases a couple of smart guys could bootstrap a “Me Too” working copy of them in a month ( see Web 2.0 apps in Australia )
I also agree that if Web 2.0 really is nothing more social networking sites based on the same dated technologies with a value directly proportional to the number of visiting people then it really is no wonder *VC’s have no interest….(Not even certain why these VNext apps are called Web 2.0 as wouldn’t the icons of the Web 1.0 era: Ebay and Amazon define sites whose value are based on social networking?)
That said I believe there is a Web vNext phenomena starting-and it isn’t based directly on a sites resale value nor need to have an exit strategy as its first order of business…
As with any emerging market space they don’t fit into neat markets but here are a couple of categories
1. Immersive Escapism. While MMORPG’s seem like just games now anybody who has read Snowcrash then played Secondlife realizes these self funding virtual worlds will have much more marketing punch then the best designed HTML site. At the last Game Developers conference Ross Brown indicated people are arleady spending more money on games than movies
Think of the potential here:
- Gambling “sites” with avatars.
- Fishing sites that you get to try the lures
- Cycling sites you trial the bikes
- Car sites you can compete the cars you are considering
I would hesitantly put Google Earth in this category…
2. Content. Torrents/News with their quasi P2P architecture are becoming big business and these services plus the potential with intelligent agents will make the next TIVIO-like appliance/applications a must have. Right now Youtube is basically offering storage and rudimentary voting for sharing video’s. What would a synthesis of the three look like? How about Windows Media Player Functionality Plus P2P Downloading PLUS an Expert System that guesses what you like PLUS Location awareness ie if you are on the road during work hours send relevant headlines to your phone all wrapped in a UI that looks like a mall with a Theater, Video store, Magazine shop, a Music store etc. Not exactly what we created with SoapBox (Fwiw the Soapbox video I have linked to is pretty cool)
3. Expert Systems. This isn’t a delivery itself but rather an area that give these applications their value and make the Me Too copies much harder. For instance David refers to an idea of FutureState….If this site’s value was based on random folks input I am not certain Dave’s idea has much in the way of legs BUT if it had a Expert System in place that not only gave you step wise guidance but also scheduled schools, training, job openings, events, conferences etc. Where is the Social Networking? The tuning of the system, the rating of the: schools, training, job openings, events, conferences etc and finally the sharing of experience.