Tim Berners Lee didn’t invent the internet. But he DID invent the world wide web. Thanks to Tim’s lack of foresight, he didn’t realize that humans would be stuck saying ten syllables whenever talking to each other about a web site “doub-le you, doub-le you, doub-le you dot” before getting to the interesting part. (at least it’s only four characters when typing.) Why, oh why, Tim, did you have to pick the letter that is longest to say? Just kidding, thank you for inventing something amazingly cool and revolutionary! You must be very proud!
Anyway, Tim O’Reilly didn’t invent web 2.0, but he did coin the phrase and bring it into popular usage. But I think perhaps the phrase has now officially jumped the shark when two different sources I follow have both questioned the term. (Marketing ROI and Web 2.0 entrepreneurs on Facebook.) And let me be clear, it’s the phrase which has jumped the shark, not the web, which is still exciting, dynamic, growing and evolving.
I actually like the term web 2.0. Yes, it has nothing to do with an actual software implementation number. But there are some important things that web 2.0 conveys. One: It’s better than the first era of static web pages. Two: It’s a work in progress, and it’s not finished yet. Three: The importance of improved software development tools in the evolution of the web.
To me, most of the important facets of web 2.0 were espoused in the Cluetrain Manifesto. But it’s far easier to say web 2.0 than The Cluetrain-inspired web. That’s just not as catchy!
But even more importantly than web 2.0 and its designation is that fact that the web has changed the way we humans live and interact in the physical world. And that’s a phenomenon I call World 2.0. World 2.0: The web has created new ways for people to interact, conduct business, travel, and exist in the physical as well as online world. Examples of World 2.0: Geocaching, Google Earth, Google Mobile, Apple’s iPhone, FlashMobs and Barcamps.