The top 10 things that aren’t Web 2.0 02 Oct 2005

108 comments Latest by Anglers Lounge

There’s a lot of smart people asking ‘What is Web 2.0?’.
I’ll tell you what it isn’t.

  1. Ajax, RSS, etc
  2. Feature lists
  3. VC funding
  4. Hiring, hiring, and more hiring
  5. “Stealth mode”
  6. Public betas
  7. “Proprietary” formats
  8. “Revolutionary” anything
  9. Google, Yahoo, or Microsoft
  10. Boards of directors
  11. Selfishness

I couldn’t help myself, I had to go up to 11. I would have added “More, more, more” as #12, but I figured it would have been a bit contradictory.

108 comments so far (Jump to latest)

Art Wells 02 Oct 05

12. Anything more than an ill-conceived buzzword?

(I’ve yet to find evidence or reason that recent trends or improvements merit a .0 release name.)

Carl 02 Oct 05

If you know so much about what isn’t Web 2.0… what IS Web 2.0?

Web 2.0 is just another buzzword.

LB 02 Oct 05

You know, I think we were almost getting there with ‘regular’ users understanding the net - then some twerp has to come up with the term ‘Web 2.0’??

It starting to feel like the 90’s all over again.

Dave Simon 02 Oct 05

Web 2.0 is like porn. I can’t define it, but I know it when I see it.

spcoon 02 Oct 05

you could have skipped the filppant list and just said that web 2.0 is a stake in the ground of developing the semantic web.

there’s nothing tangibly different about “it” from the web, because there is no “it.” people who have been evolving the web since the mid-nineties got a rude awakening in the crash of 2001; not the instantly wealthy folk who stepped in shit, i’m speaking about the tons of dedicated designers and developers who made things actually function.

“web 2.0” is a rallying phrase, a term coined from the ether in order for us to lay down philosophical principles of what we want the web to look like in the future. it’s a way to tap into the energy, ideals and philosophy that existed pre-bubble burst, yet as a “next version,” the term forces us to recognize the elements of the first pass that didn’t work within the free market system of economics.

transparency, open/collaborative environments, etc. are ideals of web 2.0, a reflection not only of a proper business model, but as a communal, semantic environment to help shape societal communication and education across numerous divides.

Jonny Roader 02 Oct 05

LB is right. It’s a buzzword, pure and simple. It obscures more than it reveals and is helpful only to self-promoters.

JF 02 Oct 05

Yep, it’s def a buzzword.

Carl 02 Oct 05

spcoon: Damn dude, talk about a bunch of b.s. your response was littered with marketing blabber.

“transparency, open/collaborative environments, etc. are ideals of web 2.0”

“…communial, semantic environment to help shape societal communication and education across numerous divides”

“…web 2.0 is a stake in the ground of developing the semantic web.”

“it’s a way to tap into the energy, ideals and philosophy that existed pre-bubble burst, yet as a “next version,” the term forces us to recognize the elements of the first pass that didn’t work within the free market system of economics.”

Blah blah blah. It’s a buzzword. Nothing more.

ceejayoz 02 Oct 05

*spcoon* probably used this:


John 02 Oct 05

I can’t tell what’s more silly — this list or the phrase “Web 2.0” itself. I think it’s this list.

Michal Migurski 02 Oct 05

Spcoon - great comments. It’s easy to forget that so-called buzzwords (“collaborative”, “transparent”) have a history - they *mean* something, even if that meaning tends to be obscured over time by thoughtless use. Even the buzzword “Web 2.0” is grounded in a tangibly different approach to building web services that emerged from 2002 to 2004 (-ish).

It’s unfortunate that this new approach now seems largely calcified - the people who had their heads in the trenches for the past few years developing all these new building blocks are now scratching their heads, trying to stack those blocks into businesses. Hence the silly stopword list at the top of this page - the absence of VC funding, secrets, hiring binges and economic incentives were preconditions responsible for the truly transparent & collaborative development surge that got us where we are now.

I’m actually really bummed out about it, and wish I had the foresight to see the change approaching a year ago.

Chris Messina 02 Oct 05

While I think I agree with your premise, I can’t say that your list is entirely helpful, Jason. Unless you were to link each item to a relevant blog post explaining your position on why said item is “not Web2.0”, it doesn’t seem like you’re constructively adding to the mix.

And until you remove the irrelevant Google Adwords, your point about taking VC rings somewhat ironic. I do know what you’re talking to as we’ve discussed this before and I’ve read your posts about it. And I do agree with you about 95% of the time on this issue. But I think it’s unfortunate to write off all VC-backed initiatives, and not just because I work for one. In fact, I am content to admit that I do, since our work will be open source and not proprietary. We’re certainly not going to be selfish about giving away our code once it’s ready (by the end of the month).

I also find it incredibly hypocritical, on that point, that you list as number 7 ‘“Proprietary” anything.’ Gimme a break! Everything you guys build is proprietary with the notable exception of Ruby on Rails. Maybe I’m confused about your definition of proprietary, but going by your metrics, I would add a number 12 to your list: 37 Signals!

Anyway, I’m not trying to come off snarky and I am looking forward to seeing you this week to possibly arm wrestle over these points, but this post just doesn’t seem helpful if indeed you intend to cast off the “buzziness” of the overloaded phrase “Web2.0”.

Anonymous Coward 02 Oct 05

It looks like someone hit a little nerve with Chris!

JF 02 Oct 05

Hey Chris, I noticed you have 11 people on the team, a product that’s at version 0.2, and you’re looking to hire even more. Of course you need VC — your payroll must be huge. What are all these people doing and what are you missing that 11 people without a released product can’t already handle?

Mike Rundle 02 Oct 05

To me, “web 2.0” (I refuse to use that term without air quotes) is about doing stuff in our industry in a more professional manner. Using semantic XHTML over shitty HTML. Using tighter algorithms that use SOAP rather than screen-scraping like Tim said. Building for the user first instead of the board of directors. Being transparent and friendly as opposed to rigid and boring.

“Web 2.0” isn’t really an evolutionary step in our industry, it’s just doing work that leads the field.

Quinton 02 Oct 05

Its a buzzword, but Wiki sums it up perfectly…

The site should not act as a “walled garden” - it should be easy to get data in and out of the system.

Users should own their own data on the site

Purely web based - most successful web 2.0 sites can be used almost entirely through the browser

tom 02 Oct 05

this may be kinda off-topic, but i just noticed that went live, without too much pooha?
anyway, congrats on another neat app.

Carl 02 Oct 05

In light of this string of comments, I find it ironic that 37signals has this on their homepage:

“DEVELOPERS: Check out Ruby on Rails, the web app framework we developed that’s igniting the Web 2.0 revolution.”

Hmmm… the irony.

Austin Taylor 02 Oct 05

Small companies can do big things without pretending to be big companies. If it means anything at all, that’s what it should be. That, or increasing the font size on your text fields.

Jim Jeffers 02 Oct 05

I was going to say if it’s not all of that other stuff is it WriteBoard? When did you guys launch that I never got an anouncement. Either way I’m using it with much enjoyment. Great job guys!

spcoon 02 Oct 05

michal: good to see that i’m not the only one that’s been around the block a few times. you shouldn’t be bummed about missing the boat, because as i tried to say before, there is no boat. if we extrapolate the concepts that the term “web 2.0” has forced us to consider, we end up looking at a completely decentralized web existence, with data and information being shared openly across all domains. that world has endless possibilities for making the world a better place to live. if shared photos and bookmarks end up being the best attempts at leveraging the underlying philosophies which are driving this new paradigm, then “web 2.0” deserves to be labeled a buzzword, earning a place next to “stickiness” on the buzzword mantel.

Chris Messina 02 Oct 05

Damn, okay, I came off sounding like an ass. Sorry about that.

Lesson of the day: don’t try to be pithy when you comment on a controversial topic before having your morning coffee!

I’ll try to be more helpful the next time I comment too, since I really don’t want to mince words with the good folks at 37 Signals. They’re all great people and I love their work — and use it all the time, as often as I can.

I guess the one thing that I can add to be constructive (since I’m typically neither so negative or bitter!) concerns the 37 Signals approach to work. I’ve learned a great deal from their model and from attending their workshops. They consistently show how less is more and that when you focus on a nexus point for each page you construct, you’re more likely to develop something functional, useful and enjoyable to work with.

In fact, for the Flock 0.2 release, we built our own hosted social bookmarking service on Rails in 4 days. That was back when we had 6 guys. So staying small does work and is an effective way to organize work.

The reason that we have 11 guys on the team (seven of which are actual coders) is because the Mozilla platform, to use la meme du jour, wasn’t architected to be Web2.0-friendly. It’s a complex piece of code that makes development cumbersome, slow and frustrating. But writing a client app is an entirely different beast than writing a web app.

So why not write another web app? Why not just build extensions on to Firefox? Because, as 37 Signals and Apple has proven, controlling the complete user experience is a means to delivering tools that you actually want to use… and that can be used by a much wider audience because usability and utility are considered across the entire app.

The browser space has stagnated because Internet Explorer has been the de facto standard for years. With this and other things starting to change, there is much more room to try new things on the web. And it’s much easier to take the “let’s throw lots and lots of noodles on the wall and see which stick … and then do it again … and again!” We’re trying to find ways to do this in the browser — and it’s hard work — but hopefully having a few extra hands on deck will get us there sooner.

Anyway, full disclosure (and the real apology): I got defensive in my earlier because many of the items in your list hit too close to what I’m currently working on and how we’re working on it. I respect the work you guys do and would like the think that what I’m helping to produce is at least remotely in the spirit of what you guys espouse — which has taught me so much. Baby steps, I guess.

Oh, and one request that I might make: how about a “Preview comment” button so I can avoid half-baked/half-assed thoughts slipping through next time?

Scrivs 02 Oct 05

Damn Chris, your first comment was better. No reason backing down like that if you feel what you were saying was the truth. Defend your turf man since it lends more credibility your way. If you feel strongly in what you are doing and think that Fried is knocking the principles behind it then you should be upset. Same thing if you bashed everything 37sigs does, would you expect Fried to back down?

As for the list I say whatever. We need a term like Web 2.0 for the simple reason that it builds confidence again into what we are doing. Sure we are approaching Boom 1.0 type craziness, but after the last couple of years I think we all deserve it. Especially us folks who missed the fun the first time around. I love seeing new stuff being produced weekly. Don’t hate the term, embrace it and run with it I say.

Is RoR Web 2.0 then since it’s “igniting the Web 2.0 revolution.”

Buzz Andersen 02 Oct 05

I’m curious about the selfishness part. What do you mean by that?

David 02 Oct 05

I’m shocked to see references to “the semantic web” as Web 2.0. Shocked.

JF 02 Oct 05

Is RoR Web 2.0 then since it’s “igniting the Web 2.0 revolution.”

Scrivs, ya got me on that one. I’ve removed all traces of that BS from the line now.

Jared 02 Oct 05

Personally I think this list is pointless and off-topic for the Web 2.0 conversation. If there is a definition behind the term “Web 2.0”, it should define how we are seeing the Web evolve and should be focused on the web and the applications behind it.

Whether or not an application was developed by Google, was venture backed, has been in beta forever, or has a large number of developers behind says nothing what-so-ever about the product. Sure it might suggest certain things, but it has nothing to do with a definition of what “Web 2.0” means.

On the other hand, IMHO, Ajax and RSS are definitely part of the Web 2.0. These are some of the technologies that are driving the evolution of the web.

In my opinion the Web 2.0 simply refers to the recent harnessing of the web as a communication and collaboration tool. Everything I have heard referred to as a part of Web 2.0 is related to enhanced communication and collaboration, be it person to person, person to computer, or computer to computer.

With this definition in mind, Ajax falls into the person to computer communication category and RSS falls into the computer to computer category.

Will 02 Oct 05

I’m so sick of hearing about “web 2.0” already. I find it kind of disheartening that it keeps getting brought up here at SVN, mostly by the article posters.

In my opinion the Web 2.0 simply refers to the recent harnessing of the web as a communication and collaboration tool.

Recent? HAHAHAHA. And what, prey tell, was the internet BEFORE this renessaince you speak of?

Jared 02 Oct 05


First of all, like most evolutions, the internet was not something different before, it was simply not as evolved. As I said, the power of the Internet to fascilitate communication and collaboration as it does today, was not being utilized.

I find it hard to believe that people do not think that there has been a recent (as in within the last two or three years) change in the internet. Case in point are applications like the ones developed by 37signals. I have not been intimately involved with the evolution of the Internet long enough to pretend to be an expert on the history of it, but I certainly see a distinctive change from my perspective.

fred 02 Oct 05

12. basecamp

Rover 02 Oct 05

I completely agree with Chris’ comments above. Every one of 37signals’ end-user products is proprietary and that dramatically curtails their usefulness and undermines what could have been a foundation for future innovation.

JF 02 Oct 05

Proprietary? Backpack has an open API. You can export your Backpack data in XML at any time. Writeboard is just text which you can save to a text file or email at any time. Same with Tada- - you can export any list to email at any time. Basecamp lets you export your messages and comments via XML at any time (and we’ll be expanding the export to other areas shortly).

Yes, the code is ours (except of course Rails which we open sourced), but the data is yours. To me, proprietary means file format lock-in or “exclusive technologies” that are often mentioned when talking about new product launches.

spcoon 02 Oct 05

david: you’re right. “web 2.0” is a stake in the ground. period. it is not the equivalent of the semantic web. but… web 2.0 is marking a period in time where the web development community is applying smarter thinking across the board—-from interface design based on human needs [5mb ppt] to using descriptive and data-centric languages instead of straight HTML to smarter business strategy and planning which leverages these advancements.

hopefully this forward thinking will become standard thinking within all domains, and we can start looking forward to a “3.0” incarnation of the web—-one step closer to a semantic web experience.

Rover 02 Oct 05

Proprietary software is software in which the source-code is held privately and is not publicly released. I have to say, I’m a little shocked that you wouldn’t think that proprietary refers to source-code, since that is the context in which it is most often used.

Proprietary code is the fundamental difference between Internet Explorer and Firefox. For example, just because Internet Explorer 7 might be more compliant with open standards doesn’t make it less of a threat to a free and open internet. Open, non-proprietary standards are extremely important, but they aren’t the whole ballgame.

Also, your comment ‘Yes, the code is ours’ also seems to be a misunderstanding of proprietary software. Proprietary isn’t about who made the code or who has the copyright to the code or who has the bragging rights, it’s about whether the code is open. Mozilla’s code is just as much ‘their’ code as Basecamp’s code is yours, but their code is open to everyone.

Ben Mc 02 Oct 05

Web 2.0 is all of these things together to make a better web. I don’t care what anyone says, I’m right.

JF 02 Oct 05

Got it, Rover. I guess I don’t see that higher level of proprietary code to be a problem (or a detriment). The guts of our products are mostly open source because they are built with Rails. But there’s some higher level stuff that’s ours and I don’t see a problem with that for any software developer. Some of it we keep, some of it we share.

Tory 02 Oct 05

I know exactly what web 2.0 is:

* pretentious
* oversized fonts
* pastel colors
* buzzwords
* featureless “user experiences”
* overly friendly and self-important copy
* acronyms

Basically it’s 1998 with less money and more metrosexuals.

Aaron Stanton 02 Oct 05

Web 2.0 isn’t even done yet. This is just the beginning of stuff gelling that’s years old. Web 2.0 will be something actually new. This is more like Web 1.5.

JP 02 Oct 05

Aside from bandwidth prices coming down and connection speeds going up, has anything really changed over the past few years? I don’t think so. There is nothing “web 2.0” about basecamp, backpack, flickr or anything else. All of these tools could have been developed, and would have been just as great a few years ago …

Jason 02 Oct 05

The web is a conduit connecting information, people, and services together. Web 2.0 is simply the buzz around it’s evolution. The web is maturing as tools and pratices emerge to build quicker, more usable, and more efficient websites. That’s what this fancy version point is about… like 37 signals preaches, versions are stupid.

Jake Tracey 02 Oct 05

Tory, I wish to subscribe to your newsletter.

Anonymous Coward 02 Oct 05

jason: versioning the internet as if a completely new “release” has/will occured is stupid; trying to call attention to specific philosophical and literal standards in the development of an evolving web is not. i mean, the only reason we’re even discussing what this call to action is, here on this blog, is because of the faux versioning nomenclature. if a versioning buzzword is what it takes to get 9-5 developers of the online space to think a bit more about progressive aspects of the medium, one that we’re all responsible for intelligently evolving (no, i’m not in kansas ;), who cares? how can discourse be a bad thing?

i think developers have a problem with the terminology because it isn’t spock-logical.

spcoon 02 Oct 05

jason: versioning the internet as if a completely new “release” has/will occured is stupid; trying to call attention to specific philosophical and literal standards in the development of an evolving web is not. i mean, the only reason we’re even discussing what this call to action is, here on this blog, is because of the faux versioning nomenclature. if a versioning buzzword is what it takes to get 9-5 developers of the online space to think a bit more about progressive aspects of the medium, one that we’re all responsible for intelligently evolving (no, i’m not in kansas ;), who cares? how can discourse be a bad thing?

personally, i think developers have a problem with the terminology because it isn’t spock-logical, which is exactly why it makes so much sense.

Boris Anthony 02 Oct 05

Bubble 2.0 anyone?

No but seriously, it’s the same story with everything. We create words to attempt to share an experience, or a “thing” if you prefer. Those who have intimate knowledge of “the thing” do not need the icon for it and usually deride the icon and those who use it. It’s totally normal and natural and let go of the hate and carry on.

Meanwhile, those not quibbling over such sillyness are busy working on the SemWeb. See y’all in 2010! ;)

Thomas, Doubting 02 Oct 05

I’m with Tory. Web 2.0 is a clusterfuck of developers talking about what Web 2.0 is. Shut up and build it, everybody.

Mike 02 Oct 05

Wow, quite a heated disussion here. I personally find the term “web 2.0” useful because it can be inspiring and forward looking. However, it is not much more than that and like any term, it can be abused and overused. I will follow Thomas’s advice and get back to work developing our web application.

Danno 02 Oct 05

If I might make a suggestion towards the right direction, Web 2.0 is about being able to Mash stuff up together, whether you end up doing that or not.

Someone already mentioned it, but I think sharing is probablly a large component, or at the very least having the ability TO share.

Finally, to draw an old saw from the Agile Developers: It’s about being small, clean, and just f-ing working.

Don Wilson 02 Oct 05

I find it funny how you suggest Ajax/RSS isn’t “Web 2.0” material. Please provide a useful list of what you think Web 2.0 is, and please leave out glossy terms for high level business-to-social interaction.

i have seen the future 02 Oct 05

Web 2.0 is virtual reality - that’s for damn sure. Goggles and gloves everybody!

Andrew Lin 02 Oct 05

I for one, love these debates. Jason, thanks for being the incendiary spark.

I’m far from old, but I’ve already lived through a few of these conversations: when the term “New Media” came around; when “Information Architecture” and “Experience Design” were buzzwords. At the time, it was the same as “Web 2.0”, no one really knew, but the only way to define it (so as to catalogue it for posterity) is to try to define it. Did the term “Post Modern” ever make sense?

Just by nature that we can’t define it, means that we are currently in it. Feel good that if you are here, you haven’t missed the boat. After all, some believe that as soon as they called it “punk,” punk was dead.

Mike D. 02 Oct 05

Basically it’s 1998 with less money and more metrosexuals.

Haha. That is awesome.

Seriously though… who really cares about the overall question here? I think a lot of the “heatedness” of this conversation is due to the fact that Jason outlined 11 things he doesn’t consider “Web 2.0” but the tone of the post combined with previous statements from Jason suggest he has a negative opinion about a lot of the things on the list. I personally think that just about everything on the list can be used in both “Web 2.0” and “non Web 2.0” projects so why even mention them? Ajax, RSS, VC, stealth mode, “revolutionary anything”? Of course all of those things can be used in what might be considered “Web 2.0” applications… but I *hope* what Jason is trying to say is that these things alone do not a Web 2.0 make.

It’s like kind of like saying flour is not a cake. I mean, of course it’s not. But in many ways it is.

James 02 Oct 05

I can’t wait for convergence to make a resurgence in the buzz-word realm. Maybe Web 2.0 will be what happens when companies start leveraging internet connectivity in living-room devices!

The term “Web” when applied to an application doesn’t make any sense. The web was meant as a visualzation of how information was interconnected on a world wide network.

Sure, the interconnection of data hasn’t changed but how we interact with it has. Perhaps Web 2.0 will be driven by new devices and not by new software.

Jon 02 Oct 05

Where’s the writeboard launch announcement?

David 02 Oct 05

Tory wins. Period.

Hrush 03 Oct 05

Rather frenzied commenting on this post, just thought I’d throw my two bits in.

I’m finding it incredibly difficult to see Web 2.0 as “new” technologies or “new” development methods or any combinations thereof.

Seems to me, Web 2.0 is about the Internet really reaching out towards its human potential. Web 2.0 is about people building things for people.

Empowerment, anyone?

Beckie 03 Oct 05

It’s a “app-less” web-app that’s so support intensive, that people have to pay to use it .)

Kris 03 Oct 05

Warning: off-topic comment.
I see a lot of jealousy here. All these people saying 37signals products are not proprietary just want to run their own Basecamp home, localhosted or on their favourite RoR powered web hosting, with no limits in disk space and features.

JP 03 Oct 05

Web 2.0 is about people building things for people.

Awww, how nice. Get real! Who have we been building stuff for the past 10 years - aliens?

Chad 03 Oct 05

Who have we been building stuff for the past 10 years - aliens?

Yep. Complete w/ government coverup to make you THINK you’re building things for other people…

Ed 03 Oct 05

Is it about releasing Web 2.0 apps like Writeboard without a blog post?

martin 03 Oct 05

it’s getting boring …

YES, it’s a buzzword of course.
NO, that doesn’t mean it is not a very useful category.

It is, at last for the time being, a useful shortcut term for a fascinating bunch of phenomena crossing borders between techno-culture, digital social practices and semio-cultural practices. and NO, geeks, this is NOT something that existed since the beginnings of the web or before 2003.

Philipp Lenssen 03 Oct 05

I think this posting to begin with wasn’t very Web 2.0 — not transparent enough, but rather evasive. If it wouldn’t have been posted on this excellent blog, I’d have filed it under “trolling” and ignored it completely. Why not just take the discussion of the definition to where it belongs:

JJ 03 Oct 05

From Wikipedia “a perceived transition of the World Wide Web from a collection of websites to a full-fledged computing platform serving web applications to end users. “

So, essentially it’s what Web 1.0 should have been. Like almost any software, it takes from one to three .0 releases to look up from the computer. Berner-Lee almost said as much when admitting if he’d had known anyone was going to use the thing, he’d have made www (like http://www. …) conventions easier to use.

With Web 2.0 somebody figured you have to use all the pretty junk together. In doing so by 2.0 and not much more than a decade, the web is just about on track to be fully baked. Just another case of how arbitrary version numbering conventions are.

Jim Renaud 03 Oct 05

Web 2.0 is a paradigm shift in web technologies exploring disconnects in a post-bubble lexicon all-the-while creating a synergistic revolution of blah, blah, blah…

Jim Renaud 03 Oct 05

Oh yeah and I forgot to mention, “convergence.”

Hrush 03 Oct 05

Awww, how nice. Get real! Who have we been building stuff for the past 10 years - aliens?

JP - look around you, mate.

Over 80% of design on the web is not fit for human consumption.

DD 03 Oct 05

Awww, how nice. Get real! Who have we been building stuff for the past 10 years - aliens?

* We build things for committees.
* We build things for budgets
* We build things for assumptions
* We build things for money
* We build things for the sake of building things
* We build things for our girlfriends
* We build things for peanut butter sandwiches
* We build things for world peace
* We build things for free beer
* We build things for the fresh scent of lemon pledge on a finely polished piano
* We build things for love

Joshua Porter 03 Oct 05

Web 2.0 means nothing outside the context of human use.

What’s exciting about this period in time (call it what you want), is that developers are creating useful tools for people at an astounding rate.

alex 03 Oct 05

Can we get back to posts relating to signals instead of noise?

Wesley Walser 03 Oct 05

It’s one heck of a buzzword though.

Alexandre Simard 03 Oct 05

Over 80% of design on the web is not fit for human consumption.

Over 80% of design on the web 2.0 is not fit for human consumption.

It’s amazing the level of projection people put into three characters. It’s as if “2.0” will by definition solve all our problems.

texiconogo 03 Oct 05

“Web 1.0” was pictures as logo’s
“Web 2.0” is text as logo’s

Todd Warfel 03 Oct 05

To JF - it’s probably most accurate to state that 37Signals apps are based on Open Source code/foundations. Unless the source code is freely open to the public, it’s not open source.

For instance, Darwin, part of OS X is Open Source. Safari isn’t Open Source, but it’s based on the Open Source KTHML rendering engine.

todd Warfel 03 Oct 05

So, then what is Web 2.0? Other than the next gen of the web…

Doesn’t the vision of Web 2.0 mean to bring desktop functions closer to the Web (and if so, then AJAX does fall into Web 2.0).

sosa 03 Oct 05

Yeah sure. I have another one.

The top 10 things that aren’t Reinassance

1. Florencia
2. Sfumatto
3. Sistine Chapel
4. Leonardo
5. Michelangello
6. The Prince
7. Oil
8. Perspective
9. The Rebirth of the Arts
10. Humanism
11. Anything but me

Mahmoud 04 Oct 05

Web 2.0 has many different meaning to many diffent people.

My definition is “users’ contribution and developers’ freedom in other people’s apps”

You can have one of these to make a Web 2.0 app but if you have them both, you get a great apps.

Adrian 04 Oct 05

Turn to Agile Web Development with Rails page 410 and we have a subhead,

“Web V2.1

The AJAX field is changing rapidly, and Rails is at the forefront”

Presumably even that’s going to be retro by Christmas.

I quite like the Web 2.0 term. If it signifies anything, it’s a change of attitude. Developers know what it means, even if it should be declared off limits to businesspeople and the general public. I don’t think it’s so much about the technology. It’s about developers putting themselves at the service of the rest of the world and trying to delight their users rather than dazzle and impress them.

hello.jpg 04 Oct 05

tory sucks big fat dick!

keusta 05 Oct 05

i do graffiti 2.0

richard 05 Oct 05

Apparently, Web 2.0 is about waisting bandwidth by arguing about undefined buzzwords’ meanings. Wow.

richard 05 Oct 05

Apparently, Web 2.0 is about waisting bandwidth by arguing about undefined buzzwords’ meanings. Wow.

Zec 05 Oct 05

Damm, I ‘ll really start to ask question about how old blog authors are to get insight into their perpectives. I don’t agree with your article Jason. It made me think when read ”hiring,hiring”. What’s wrong with that ? Or you prefer to live out of thin air?
Yes, Web 2.0 buzzword is simplistic and wrong just like ”New Economy” was wrong.
It’s about evolution and it paints that.

water 05 Oct 05

so now i have to pay a monthly fee for apps? screw that. web 2.0 is nothing more than watering down what microsoft pioneered and charging a monthly fee.

Rob 06 Oct 05

I agree with the writer. I think if anyone in real life ever started talking to me about Web 2.0 I would just punch them and walk off.

Don Schenck 06 Oct 05

Web 2.0, most of all, seems to be about “social” software.

My take.

Oh … and I’m pretty much always right, so get in line behind me or be left out in the cold.

Dallas Ransom 06 Oct 05

Surely Web 2.0 is simply the next part of the maturation of the industry. As an industry, we now have better tools and more interoperability and greater public awareness of what the internet can be successfully used for. Developers now know how long it takes to make things, clients have a better idea of what they need. The proliferation of free and Open Source Software is ensuring that there aren’t any huge barriers to gain entrance to the industry, and the web itself provides all the documentation necessary to allow developers to work independently. Any popular trends, for example the so called proliferation of ‘social’ software, is merely a symptom of the maturation of the web.

Brad 07 Oct 05

I think I’ve got it.

Web 1.0 was the Internet looking out
Web 2.0 is the community looking in

you think?

Wesley Tanaka 12 Oct 05

Sure that web 2.0 isn’t just the rest of the community catching up to the Microsoft NET and Sun ONE buzzword web services hype from way back when?

sfcg 13 Oct 05

spcoon: Did you do an 8-ball of coke before you wrote that?

afed 18 Oct 05

Tory aka Hello.JPG is a well known internet troll and scammer.

Pablo Volenski 18 Oct 05

Hi, I liked your post, bud I dont think Google isn’t part of Web 2.0. Enormous seekers, with seek mechanisms as PageRank are part of the Web 2.0. Adsense, the new way of publicity in the web, that doesn`t budder to the consumer, and it’s intellignet, becouse it puts, for example, food publicity in food web pages, itˇs also part of web 2.0.

Mike Duguid 20 Oct 05

Well make the most of 2.0 it cos we’re all gonna get wiped out by bird flu soon, and the the only ruby you’ll be worried about is the big ruby red blotches coughed up as you groan your last feebly ‘i wish i had spent less friggin time blogging pish about web 2.0 and developing shite ajax social apps’ *cough* *cough*

galiel 27 Oct 05

It is self-destructive to attack every new attempt to bring a complex but consistent trend under an understandable short-hand phrase.

Common language is very important for productive discourse. A vision that can inspire and motivate us to work toward a goal greater than our own self-gratification is also not a bad thing. The phobia over being put in an artificial box is based on valid concerns, but we should not throw out the baby with the bathwater.

Web 2.0 is a very useful way to communicate that there is a new paradigm emerging that has a fundamentally different approach to using online technology—not only amongst ourselves, but in the spirit of the new approach, which, among other things, blurs the lines and hierarchies between “developers” and “users”, it communicates in terms that the general public can understand.

It is easy and lazy, and safe to be cynical. But it may not ultimately be useful.

John 01 Nov 05

Please visit my new friends:
Blogg - John - Blogg - John - Blogg - Anja - Blogg - Greta - Blogg - Sandy - Blogg - Petra - Blogg - Gina - DJ - DJ - Blog - Blog - Blog - KC - Blog - Blog

daCat 14 Nov 05

Web 2.0 is a giant turd that wont flush, but it will give you the chance to be 0wn3d by Microsoft, Google, Yahoo et al. You’ll be over profiled so much that they’ll know what you’re going to buy next - even before you do.

In 2015 they’ll be saying “I remember the big Web crash of 2010..” because far too many people were too short sighted to see that over reliance on hosted this, hosted that would ultimately end in tears.

Unplug your cablemodem/dsl line/modem etc and try to function ‘normaly’ - it doesn’t work. Sure you can still play music, edit documents and do things locally - but that’s because your’e not reliant on anything external. Move all that outside of your control and you’ll end up cattle trucked.

Oh, wait a second, it’s just a reincarnation of the thin client donkey poop we we’re being sold 5 years ago…

Web 2.0 over blogged, zero content.

David Gibbons 15 Nov 05

GOOD List - fully agreed.

This is simple people ……..

Web1 - the web you can read
Web2 - the web you can read _and_ write

The only person on the planet who gets this is NZ’s web2 blogger, Richard MacManus, who simply blogs under …. “READ/WRITE WEB”


Web2 has been with us since eBay, but it’s always been a miniscule % of web traffic - blogging changed all that - and now users write the web almost as much as they read it.

If only O’Reilly didn’ go and shoot its credibility all to hell and claim that Web2 is an “attitude” - no wonder the level-headed skeptics are freekin’ out.

Fact is though, all this writing we’re doing now creates endless new business opportunities - shrug them off at your expense.

Why does this get everyone so riled up?

Custom Web Design Company 23 Dec 05

you gave me a lot of important inormation.Thanks. I’m the beginner.I need it.

test 02 Jan 06


Chinokao 17 Jan 06

I’ve just read the second comment. The answer is that Web 2.0 is you, me, all of us. That’s Web 2.0, a Matrix between everybody in Internet.


A.S.: Sorry about my english, hope everybody understand (I’m spanish ;-). )

Big Dog 15 Feb 06

I think the answer is still changing but ultimately it is one that empowers us to use our creativity and intellect to deliver content and application without rule & restriction, the true freedom to innovate.

Sign on 26 Feb 06

It has come to a point in time, where there’s an abundance of development tools.

People who know nothing about programming can “create” things and it makes them feel useful and important.

However, since they don’t have a programming background, they cannot see the implications of their creations. They have no foreward thinking to see the widespread impact of what they’re doing.

Need a classic example?

Podcasting - it doesn’t take many neuron’s to record an MP’3, and create an RSS Feed.

Multiply that action by 34 million -

See all the wasted bandwidth? All those “subscriptions” for the sake of having high subscription counts….

Oh, and the part about an RSS Feed - hell, 80% of the don’t even pass basic XML 1.0 standards.

WEB 2.0 is just total bullshit - created by a bunch of tree-huggin, mac users, who enjoy Firefox (which couldn’t even correctly display DIV elements until their latest release….)

pron 10 Mar 06

Web 2.0 is just a sandbox for the next generation of porn-distribution and spam-delivering technologies.

Oh and it’s also a way for all those comp-sci college graduates to avoid getting real jobs.

Anonymous Coward 12 May 06

“web 2.0” is a vapor concept. Someone should kick Dale Dougherty in the nuts for inventing the term! Thanks a lot, butt plug!!!

Helen, web design manager 18 May 06

“It’s a big, vague, nebulous cloud of pure architectural nothingness.” these words of Joel Spolsky suit me the best,
though now when people say “Web 2.0” now, I have some idea what they mean. It just means doing things right.

HTML School 06 Jun 06

web 2.0 is such an arbitrary term it’s no wonder I’ve never heard it used outside of web circles. Define it as whatever you want, but I’m pretty sure that RSS needs to be on that list.

maya 20 Jul 06

Well the total 10 things are obvious way to be a part of web designing.Or it will also effect the whole career as well.

Anglers Lounge 31 Aug 06

Well, heres my shameless plug to my web 2.0 site. I agree however, the its a growing buzz thats going to run flat.

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