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Web 2.0 Compact Definition: Trying Again

A commenter on one of my previous posts about Web 2.0 wrote:

Why is everyone referencing O’Reilly regarding the correct definition of Web 2.0. I never could get my head around this. I personally think that his definition of Web 2.0, isn’t actually definition. He basically came up with some analogies which people later used to define what ‘they’ thought Web 2.0 was. If O’Reilly actually defined it, would there be so much debate?

I replied, and thought that my reply might be worth publishing more widely than just in the comments. So here is a new attempt at a brief definition:

Web 2.0 is the business revolution in the computer industry caused by the move to the internet as platform, and an attempt to understand the rules for success on that new platform. Chief among those rules is this: Build applications that harness network effects to get better the more people use them. (This is what I’ve elsewhere called “harnessing collective intelligence.”)

(Eric Schmidt has an even briefer formulation of this rule: “Don’t fight the internet.” That’s actually a wonderful way to think about it. Think deeply about the way the internet works, and build systems and applications that use it more richly, freed from the constraints of PC-era thinking, and you’re well on your way. Ironically, Tim Berners-Lee’s original Web 1.0 is one of the most “Web 2.0″ systems out there — it completely harnesses the power of user contribution, collective intelligence, and network effects. It was Web 1.5, the dotcom bubble, in which people tried to make the web into something else, that fought the internet, and lost.)

Other rules (which mostly fall out of this one) include:

  1. Don’t treat software as an artifact, but as a process of engagement with your users. (“The perpetual beta”)

  2. Open your data and services for re-use by others, and re-use the data and services of others whenever possible. (“Small pieces loosely joined”)

  3. Don’t think of applications that reside on either client or server, but build applications that reside in the space between devices. (“Software above the level of a single device”)

  4. Remember that in a network environment, open APIs and standard protocols win, but this doesn’t mean that the idea of competitive advantage goes away. (Clayton Christensen: “The law of conservation of attractive profits”)

  5. Chief among the future sources of lock in and competitive advantage will be data, whether through increasing returns from user-generated data (eBay, Amazon reviews, audioscrobbler info in last.fm, email/IM/phone traffic data as soon as someone who owns a lot of that data figures out that’s how to use it to enable social networking apps, GPS and other location data), through owning a namespace (Gracenote/CDDB, Network Solutions), or through proprietary file formats (Microsoft Office, iTunes). (“Data is the Intel Inside”)

(I’ll note that the process of getting advantage from data isn’t necessary a case of companies being “evil.” It’s a natural outcome of network effects applied to user contribution. Being first or best, you will attract the most users, and if your application truly harnesses network effects to get better the more people use it, you will eventually build barriers to entry based purely on the difficulty of building another such database from the ground up when there’s already so much value somewhere else. (This is why no one has yet succeeded in displacing eBay. Once someone is at critical mass, it’s really hard to get people to try something else, even if the software is better.) The question of “don’t be evil” will come up when it’s clear that someone who has amassed this kind of market position has to decide what to do with it, and whether or not they stay open at that point.)

“Defining” a business model transition is always hard. We had a “personal computer” era long before the business rules were clear. A deeper understanding of the new rules of business in the PC era, and a ruthless application of them before anyone else understood them as well, is what made Microsoft the king of the hill in that era.

A lot of what I’m trying to do with my thinking on Web 2.0 is to make the rules apparent to everyone, so that the industry isn’t blindsided. Perhaps a hopeless effort, but I’ve gotten some traction…

tags:
  • http://www.helge.at helge

    for me, there is one word that sums up everything web 2.0: “openness”.

  • http://www.research2zero.com Kris Tuttle

    I think the main reason people have trouble wrapping their head around the Web 2.0 concepts Tim is talking about is that they touch on several different areas and many people are by nature quite focused on just one (software, content, open source, mobile devices, lightweight business models, service clouds and so on and on) which means they tend to see the aspects of Web 2.0 that are in their domain but have a harder time with the rest.

    Think about the differences in the midsets of two teenagers trying to create a video sharing service and the CIO of a Fortune 100 company. Still the aspects driving Web 2.0 or whatever you call it matter deeply for them in their efforts.

  • adam Hodgkin

    This new definition does not have a tight and explicit structure. Is ‘revolution’ the right concept to introduce? Web 2.0 is not just a change of direction, it is intended to signify a broader way of building sustainability.

    The HCI theme is hugely ambitious, and if we take that seriously (we should) one needs to situate the new turn of the internet in relation to thinkers like Buckminster Fuller and Teilhard de Chardin. The net is obviously a manifestation of human collective intelligence and Web 2.0 is about developing it in ways which recognise and leverage this. Teilhard may be suspect in some quarters but his ideas on the ‘noosphere’ (see wikipedia on noosphere) fit well with yours on HCI. See also:

    http://exacteditions.blogspot.com/2006/11/web-20-and-hci.html

  • http://franticindustries.blogspot.com franticindustries

    People are criticizing your definition of Web 2.0 not because it’s wrong, but because it’s not simple enough to be a definition. The moment you say: “Chief among those rules…” you’ve stopped defining and started explaining.

    This part: “Applications that harness network effects to get better the more people use them.” is, as I’ve already stated in one of my previous comments, a good definition of a web 2.0 application. My own definition is practically the same thing: “Web 2.0 application is any Internet application whose value intrinsically grows with the amount of its users.”

    Once you have that definition, you can simply define Web 2.0 as a “Set of applications that harness…etc.”

    As you’ve said, any other things you mention here are valid, but basically stem from the above.

    Perhaps I’m oversimplifying things, but if you need more than a couple of sentences to define something, it means that you are, probably, defining more than one thing. When we talk about Web 2.0, we should try to extract its essence, the things that makes it what it is, but not a thing more. If anyone can name an application that matches the above criteria, and is not a Web 2.0 application, then the definition is not good. Also, if anyone can name an application that doesn’t match the above criteria, but is a Web 2.0 app, the definition is not good. It’s entirely possible, but I think it’s at least close, and only minor changes are perhaps needed to reach a complete definition.

    As always, sorry if this is too long (:

  • http://opensourceculture.blogspot.com Dawn Foster

    I think that this a great step toward a more concise web 2.0 definition; however, I am not sure that web 2.0 is a “business revolution” as much as it is a consumer revolution that businesses can take advantage of by building “applications that harness network effects to get better the more people use them.” I think the key to web 2.0 is how the expectations of the users are changing. Only a few years ago, most consumers saw the Internet as a passive medium, like radio and television, to be watched and enjoyed without any direct involvement. Many consumers now expect to be able to participate in the online environment by commenting, uploading, or participating in the content in a number of ways. I think that the key to web 2.0 is consumer driven participation and interactivity. Businesses need to understand this fundamental change and focus on building online participation into their business models.

  • http://tim.oreilly.com Tim O'Reilly

    franticindustries –

    Take the first sentence as a definition, and treat the rest then as explication. There are many things that are hard to define in a single sentence.

    Remember Aristotle’s definition of man as a featherless biped. Or as Wallace Stevens said, in a slightly different context, “His extreme of logic became illogical.”

  • http://tim.oreilly.com Tim O'Reilly

    helge –

    I’m afraid I have to differ. “Openness” is the start of the Web 2.0 story, but I think that the story will play out with considerably more complexity. Read my paper, “The Open Source Paradigm Shift”, which compares the effect of open source to the standardization of the personal computer hardware layer, and essentially predicted Web 2.0 as a result of Christensen’s “law of conservation of attractive profits.”

    The key to understanding Web 2.0 doesn’t end with openness. It ends with understanding how openness leads to business advantage, and thus eventually leads to new forms of closedness.

    The open PC architecture ended the closed hardware world dominated by IBM, but it led to the closed software world dominated by Microsoft. Open source and the open standards of the internet are ending the closed software world dominated by Microsoft, but…

    I think that ten years from now, there will be new giants who have figured out the new levers of competitive advantage, and who have closed down innovation. (I think that it will be through data — hence my assertion that Web 2.0 begins with harnessing collective intelligence, and ends with data as the Intel Inside.)

    But then the story begins again, with new openness in areas we can’t even imagine now, leading to fresh innovations.

    Every industry period begins in openness, matures as companies gain proprietary advantage, and ends when companies abuse that advantage, forcing creative people into a new end run.

    The best that we can hope for is that those who gain advantage learn from the past, and are better stewards of that advantage, keeping enough openness for innovation to flourish without a complete revolution.

  • http://tim.oreilly.com Tim O'Reilly

    Adam –

    Unfortunately, reality does not lend itself to a tight and simplistic definition either. Yes, HCI is a hugely ambitious idea, but so too are the changes that are happening.

    And I totally agree that this idea needs to be situated in a broader context — we just never thought that de Chardin was talking about something that would be technologically mediated! And a lot of people get very uncomfortable with that turf (remember the uproar over Kevin Kelly’s wired article) so I don’t spend too much time there.

  • http://franticindustries.blogspot.com franticindustries

    @Tim: You’re right, it’s often hard to define something in clear, simple terms, even a simple object like a chair or a table. My position is a bit populistic: I simply think that the majority of people will understand and remember it better if the definition is simple.

    Maybe one day my grandson asks me what web 2.0 is. I guess I’ll say: Web 2.0 was the moment when we stopped using computers and started using the Internet.

  • http://www.jzip.org/ adamsj

    Tim,

    When you say

    Build applications that harness network effects to get better the more people use them

    do you intend primarily to mean

    Build applications that harness network effects to get better as more people use them

    or

    Build applications that harness network effects to get better as people use them more

  • http://tim.oreilly.com Tim O'Reilly

    Adamsj, the answer is “both.” More people, or more usage, or both. A system with lots of people doing very little might be less powerful than one with a mid-sized group doing a lot. Most participatory systems involve both large, little-involved groups and smaller, more committed core groups. Like Larry Wall’s definition of perl, a good open source project or a good Web 2.0 application, is like an onion, with many layers.

  • http://tim.oreilly.com Tim O'Reilly

    franticindustries: brilliant! “Web 2.0 was the moment when we stopped using computers and started using the Internet.”

  • http://franticindustries.blogspot.com franticindustries

    @Tim: Glad you like it. I guess it was a moment of revelation; I like these posts of yours because they make me think harder than I usually do.

  • http://www.jzip.org/ adamsj

    Tim,

    I figured you meant both to some extent, but I was curious whether you’d put emphasis on one or the other. The problem I saw with franticindustries’ proposed “Web 2.0 application is any Internet application whose value intrinsically grows with the amount of its users” was that user volume is not nearly so important as the volume of user interaction. One of the examples I’ve heard you use as a Web 1.0 application is Mapquest, which has lots of users but little user interaction.

    Neither interaction nor participation is necessary, I suppose, to what you’re labelling Web 2.0. For example, I strongly suspect the purchasing data that Amazon gets is much more useful to them as BI than the data from participation or interaction.

    If we’re thinking about this as a consequence of Metcalf’s Law, then surely we’d expect user interaction to generate more value than participation without user interaction, and we’d expect active participation to generate more value than simple/passive purchasing. That doesn’t appear to be the case in a fair number of the applications given as examples. This raises the question, How much of the Web 2.0 value is produced just by the massive size of the data sets and how much is added by user interaction?

  • http://dealarmy.blogspot.com Tom Hynes

    Tim,
    “The day we started using the internet.” That’s as good an explanation as I’ve seen to date. Great back and forth on this topic. Any guesses as to how long we’ll be trying to define the Web 2.0 movement? Do you think all it’s facets have been completely flushed out?

  • http://www.bradnickel.com Brad Nickel

    We spend far too much time compartmentalizing. The definition does not matter. No one except publishers and columnists care. What is happening is what I thought would happen in 97,98,99,00 (and was wrong) and that is that applications on the web are gaining acceptance. Period. Different tools to build, different interfaces, etc. etc. but ultimately just ASPs. That’s it. Quit trying to define everything. The users sure as hell don’t care what it is called and they won’t buy it because it is defined, they just want it to work and be easy to use. Web 2.0 bah humbug.

  • http://www.bradnickel.com Brad Nickel

    I forgot the other people that care are academics, but who cares. Make something web based that works and that users will use.

  • http://tim.oreilly.com Tim O'Reilly

    John — Really good point. Now I get your drift. Yes, merely having users doesn’t make a difference. It’s what you learn from those users. However, it doesn’t have to be by “interaction.” For example, Google learns from user’s links to web sites, as well as user search behavior, and uses that to deliver better search results. That’s very Web 2.0, even though the users aren’t conscious that they are “contributing” to Google.

    So similarly, MapQuest *could* have been learning from its users all these years (and in fact, Perry Evans, the founder, said that he had plans for that, but they went awry after he sold MapQuest to AOL.) There’s a lot of activity now in turning mapping systems into Web 2.0 hubs, harvesting all kinds of explicit and implicit user information.

  • http://tim.oreilly.com Tim O'Reilly

    Brad, there’s a LOT more to what is happening today than “applications on the web are gaining acceptance.” We’re starting to understand how those applications can be different from PC-based applications. And that understanding is more than just hair-splitting, which is why so many people DO care about what Web 2.0 means. The name isn’t important, but what it points to is.

  • http://tim.oreilly.com Tim O'Reilly

    Tom — How long will we be trying to define Web 2.0? Not long, I think. The story is becoming clearer to a lot of people as time goes by. Ideas that seemed really out there when I first started articulating them are now gaining wide acceptance. And what’s next is that they fade into the woodwork.

    Later on, as Brad suggests, they’ll be of interest to academics, both in computer science and in business school.

  • Search Engines Web

    It appears the WEB SERVICES (both definitions) – is a primary theme throughout Web 2.0

  • http://www.bradnickel.com Brad Nickel

    Tim, Thanks for replying directly, but I still don’t see the impact of having a definition, but that could be just me. Yes they are different than PC applications……….. and?

    Will a definition make them better? Maybe it will help a fledgling developer, but then again not.

    Will they set a standard that everyone will follow? You mean like html and css?

    I do agree, that web applications are getting better and that we are doing a better job of making them usable, accessible, and of connecting them, but isn’t that ultimately all that this really is?

    Usability
    Accessibility
    Shared data

    Seems to me we’ve gone from command line to gui all over again, but a definition?

  • steve

    How about a new approach that may help wrap up the debate over the meaning of Web 2.0?

    How would you define the _end_ of Web 2.0, and the start of something else?

    What is the limit on that “2.0″ number, and an indication of when to use “3.0″ or another term?

  • Glenn Pouser

    Man will you stop this, it’s getting really really boring to read “definitions” of what Web 2.0 is. What’s the use? Get over talking about it and let people make their own definitions and draw their own conclusions.
    Please write about specifics, write separately about all those phenomena and technologies that you try to fit under the Web20 umbrella. I know you have done that already and I wish you would settle with that and avoid being abstract. To use the words of Joel Spolsky, you have become an Architecture Astronaut Tim and it’s sad because you used to be a really inspiring writer.
    That’s it really. You should write to inspire and motivate again, get back to the cool guy you used to be. Please.

  • http://tim.oreilly.com Tim O'Reilly

    Brad –

    The use of making these distinctions is (hopefully) to avoid another dotcom bubble-like detour. See my link to Fred Wilson’s prediction about the demise of pre-rolls on video (to appear later today). Some people don’t get it. Those of you who are sure you do, like Glenn, feel free to skip reading.

    Glenn –

    Please define “architecture astronaut.” :-) And I thought I was writing to inspire and motivate, just like I’ve always done. And quite a few people do appear to be inspired and motivated. Sorry it’s not working for you.

  • http://beconfident.cjb.net/ bk

    I think “The perpetual beta” part needs way more clarification. “…a process of engagement with your users.” can mean as we all know, in other words, an excuse for problems. It always had a downside and the service used it as an answer like “Sorry, we’re still in beta.” I don’t think that’s a right phrase with the word “still” in it when it comes to “The perpetual beta” you’re talking about. It turned into a bad practice and doesn’t look like a good characteristic of Web 2.0 just to note briefly(compactly). Even the definition of “Web 2.0″ is also rather in a “perpetual beta” phase whatever it means.

  • http://www.bradnickel.com Brad Nickel

    I have a great deal of respect for you and your leadership in the technology arena. You have done more than most to define the right and wrong ways to do things with your writings and your publishing company, but while the idea of preventing a bust is admirable, I do not think you have the power to stifle capitalism and by extension greed with your site, company, influence or writings and that ultimately is the reason for every boom and bust. It does not matter if it is defined, because too many folks with a grand plan or an affinity for marketingese tied to Web 2.0 lingo are going to pretend they have a legitimate idea and some idiot is going to come along and fund it. 300 YouTubes is evidence enough that the VC community still hasn’t figured it out. I would like to think that our industry has a enough since to pull out before it’s too late, but we don’t, because in the end our fantasy is the next Google, YouTube, Skype, or other deal that will make us gazillionaires and thereby make us the envy of the world, gain us the adoration of hot girls, let us drive fast cars we have no business driving and somehow stave off the thing that drives us the most death. OK, I got off on a tangent there, but you get the idea. You sure as hell can’t beat greed if Jesus Christ or Santa Claus can’t at Christmas time.

    So, define away, but I think you are wasting your time. That said, this has been a lot of fun. I am a junkie for the technology and I love the really cool tools being created that I dreamed of in the 90s. I watched the dreams get crushed by a board room full of greedy capitalists that had no intention beyond a stock market score. If anyone thinks defining 2.0 is going to stop that, then we are all a little naive. I pulled out of Dotcom stocks after my first board presentation in 2000 and I won’t be buying any Web 2.0 stocks now.

    I hope I am miserably wrong, but I think the only use for a definition is for those of us that actually care about quality, usability, and advancing human beings while making a living. Your definition is definitely perfect for that, but I don’t expect it to solve the big picture problem.

  • http://www.bradnickel.com Brad Nickel

    sense, not since. Duh

  • http://whatsonmybookshelf.com Steve

    The key phrase is that web2.0 is about organizing people. It is about taking the internet and making it real life rather than just information–or is web2.0 about using people to organize information–and then web 3.0 is about organizing people. I think http://whatsonmybookshelf.com is heading more in the web3.0 direction

  • joe smithson

    folks, it’s simple: “Web 2.0″ is just a catchprase used to describe a way of using the Web–what that way entails is debated, but generally its social networking.

    it’s NOT:

    * a way of designing web content.
    * a new technology.
    * a new visual design.
    * in any way different from Web 1.0.

  • joe smithson

    the web is about whatever users want it to be about. there is no “one way” the web is used. the Web is not simply YouTube, Myspace, and Friendster.

    the web’s always been used for connecting people, sharing information, etc. “Web 2.0″ is jsut a silly catchprase in search of a home. adding numbers after the word “Web” doesn’t mean a dang thing.

  • http://www.helge.at helge

    tim -

    i greatly enjoyed your response to “openness”. extremely interesting.

    it reassured me that “openness” is key to understanding web2.0 – as in how it began, and as in how new dominance ends that openness. is a social web where giants “own” large portions of our user and attention data and dominate our web2.0ish social behaviour – still “our” web2.0? shouldn’t we call it differently then, if just to illustrate the difference?

  • http://teachers.usd259.net/fgeasland/ Floyd Geasland

    I think I agree with Dawn Foster that the words “consumer revolution” would fit better than business revolution. The ‘Web2.0′ effects and products are going beyond the business sphere. The education sphere is just starting to feel and experience this (we’re always a little slow.

    I have a question about the “don’t be evil” idea could this be one of the reasons why Google seems to have replaced Yahoo as one of the main search engines? Yahoo put so many different things and was really making it hard to not download the toolbar that the kids at my school quit using it. Then the students started using Google instead.
    My students don’t even think Yahoo like they did two years ago.

    Google on the other hand seems to be a little more planned when they introduce something new. Their add-ons seem to appeal more to a general consumer.

  • Nicolás Tereschuk

    The concept seems quite clear to me. I am trying to work on the Web 2.0 concept applied to e-government. As far as I am concerned one of the main developments in that aspect has come from the Generalitat de Catalunya (http://www.gencat.net/nougencat/cas/web20.htm), in Spain.
    ¿Does anyone knows anywhere else where I should look for?

  • http://www.destinum.com edu william

    I think in this definition it continues lacking an important aspect: the objective of the network and the Web. In order to be able to value, to measure and to extrapolate the context online of Web 2,0 to realities offline, I think that it is necessary to establish an objective. This way it would be easier and useful the power to speak of enterpriese 2,0, tourism 2,0,

    Indeed I am making my doctoral thesis on tourism 2,0 and hotels 2.0, and in the study of Web 2,0, we have been with this absence that we thought that it can be very useful to clarify the term and to give simple a social and real connotation him beyond the technological one. Thus, we have proposed three definitions in our work

    Web 2.0: “Web platform based on participative users, with capacity to self organized and self developed the social or economic sector to which it makes reference”, that is to say, a Web system (online) that can have the capacity to transform a reality (offline) according to the collective intelligence of its users, acting as means of organizing filter between realities offline.

    Tourism 2.0: “A system Web integrated of tourist direct distribution, based on participative social networks, self regulated and self developed, between residents, visitors and professionals, oriented to the continuous improvement of the access of the tourist destinies to the Society of the Information and Knowledge”.

    Enterprises 2.0: “A system Web of enterprise management based on participative social networks, self developed and self regulated of clients, employees and directors, oriented to the continuous improvement of the access of the companies to the Society of the Information and the Knowledge.”

    which is your opinion about them?

  • http://dev.trevoca.com Dave Q

    Hmmm… a documentary would be nice? Anyone want to pick this up? a mockumentary maybe?

    Web 2.0 killed the Dotcom star

  • Vidizer

    I have a problem with franticindustries’ “defition” of what web 2.0 is:

    Web 2.0 application is any Internet application whose value intrinsically grows with the amount of its users.

    If we narrow it like that, World of Warcraft becomes one of the TOP web 2.0 apps while unfortunately I don’t see much of web 2.0 in it. Same applies to all other MMOs in different degrees as well some virtual worlds.

  • http://www.annedorko.com dorko

    Web 2.0 seems to open up a lot of doors to me… maybe too many but I think there is a lot of opportunity in it

  • Maria M.

    Tim, as I am rather new to this area of interest, I wonder if we could parallelize web 2.0 attributes to those of neural networks, with regard to your definition.
    What I mean is, web 2.0 applications become more intelligent the more people use them. Right? For example, such an application learns (training stage) the user’s preferences at first and then it becomes more flexible and faster. In other words, adaptable to user’s needs.
    What do you think about that?

  • http://fotocltoris.iespana.es/dominacion.html Carl

    Doesn’t anybody find overwhelming the fact that web 3.0 is already under discussion when we are still trying to fully embrace the web 2.0? I still have some reluctance to make everything web 2.0, probably I’m a caveman, I know…

  • sigs

    Often there seems to be great confusion on some very basic concepts: What is meant by “Web”? The WWW over HTTP? FTP? Does “email” belong to “Web”? There are webmails and there are WWW-independent email-protocols. What about IMs or IRC? On the other hand, why should RSS be “Web”? XML or SVG are absolutely not “web”, and yet are shown in the pic in http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Web_2.0

    When you say Compact Definition, there should first be a substance to be compactly defined. As the case is with Web 2.0, there probably is an idea. There are catchphrases, guidelines, visions. There are even huge returns on investments (whether or not they are consequence of the “Web” changing into something else or just natural evolution of the good old http://WWW... hmm). Still, these 2.0 definitions typically just list services that have succeeded and say This Is Web 2.0. Look at the winners, they’re Web 2.0. Be 2.0, be a winner. That would be a compact definition.

    You use a lot of vivid metaphors and analogies, which is great of course. Real change, however, emerges from genuinely new technologies and solutions. Marketing speeches are needed to sell them and create the cash flow.

    I understand every sentence in your definition, and agree that there is an obvious transition in business models. Still, I’d argue nothing genuinely new that possibly has emerged lately is included in “Web 2.0″. The services were there in the 90′s.

    Maybe the compact definition for 2.0 could be “every-man’s web”? In the 90′s, the services were there, but only the avantgarde actually used them. What has changed, then? The Web? Hardly. Keyword should rather be broadband penetration. More services for the masses, for the first time; simply because only now the masses actually are there to consume them.

  • sigs

    “A commenter on one of my previous posts about Web 2.0 wrote”

    It would be fair to give credit to the commenter by publishing his nick or name, wouldn’t it?

  • http://www.aydesign.net Web Tasarım

    Thank You for this informations.

  • http://www.ibc.com.au Richard Keeves

    Tim,
    thanks for hosting this admirable debate which I’ve just come across today. I think it is really important to define what one means when one says something, especially a phrase or concept such as Web 2.0 that has become ubiquitous whilst having no clear definition.

    I must say that I like the definition of frantic…

    “Web 2.0 application is any Internet application whose value intrinsically grows with the amount of its users.”

    I’d love to know his/her real name so I can give credit where it is due.

    That said, I think we can improve on it… Based on frantic’s definition, I would evolve it to being “Web 2.0 is any Internet application whose value and appeal intrinsically grows as a result of the contributions from its users.”

    imho, Web 2.0 is not to do with the amount of an application’s users. It is to do with their contributions.

    This definition covers Web 2.0 being about “user-generated content” and about the use of the web as a “platform” for other hosted applications which improve with the inputs of users – rather than just client-server software.

    Love your thoughts…

    Cheers
    Richard Keeves
    Perth, Western Australia

  • http://www.viewr.com Karl Lingenfelder

    Web 2.0 is the Super Computer of Collective Intelligence. We still have not experienced, realized or understood the full ramifications of 2.0.

  • http://overseasproperty24.co.uk A. H. Butz

    Web 2.0 first is a time stamp for new internet projects. “Self adding content” also is an old approach. furthermore the traffic will concentrate on some oligopolish sites. seems that the idea of “online services” (e.g. AOL, Compuserve) will come back, but the platform is the internet. so the web will move from “web pages” to “web books”, like bestsellers IRL. monopolish companies are forbidden in the real economy but not on the net, that will be a problem of tomorrow.