The ‘What is Web2.0?’ Discussion has started

South Africa is just entering this space so a number of key concepts have been missed on Warwick Ashford’s article on ITWeb on Web2.0. My response/comments:

1. The power is moving to the edge of the networks in that participation by users is becoming more important and more anti-establishment (all incumbents are battling with this – the news organisations, national broadcasters, etc). Try out Digg, YouTube or Gizmodo to see this in action. The opinion-based blogosphere is also a good example of this.

2. Data in and Data out. Easy methods of exchanging data with systems and between systems. This is seen in more companies publishing their API’s – like Google Maps and Amazon. Its also important for users to be able to extract data from systems – like iCal file exports.
3. Content Syndication – this is the key! RSS, Atom and XML have made the distribution of content simple and effective. Try blogs, podcasts and news sites for this – and use Newshutch or the redeveloped Google Reader to consolidate and manage your RSS feeds.
4. Simplicity in design – away with clutter and muck, in with simple, fast, interfaces that are alive – try the Digg Swarm on digg.com.
5. Idea to execution – programming languages like Ruby on Rails have cut development time significantly – and these are skills that SA needs to develop.

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