Web 2.0 is so 2005. It's passé. Old. Boring. Done.
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Web 3.0 is the hot new thing, at least for 2009 and 2010.
In fact, guys that have made a ton of money on Web 2.0 are now distancing themselves from their baby.
Take Randy Komisar, a partner at Kleiner Perkins. He recently was quoted as saying that "We have absolutely no interest in funding Web 2.0 companies."
In other words, if you are working on a startup concept for a new social marketing company or a user-generated content site, you are too late to the party.
It's like it's 1905 and you are working on some incremental improvement to the horse and buggy. Whoa, Web 2.0 startup entrepreneur, the world is about to pass you by. Be careful.
Sure, the hallmarks of Web 2.0 -- creativity, information sharing, and collaboration – are not going away anytime soon.
It's just that they are no longer of interest to venture capitalists, many of whom see the Web 2.0 market as oversaturated. With their front row seat to technology trends, they hear the hissing from the hole in the Web 2.0 balloon and know that the easy money is long gone.
If Web 2.0 continues to bear fruit into the future, Komisar may be proved wrong. Remember when the CEO of Digital Computer, Ken Olson, said "There is no reason anyone would want a computer in their home." Like Komisar, he was a sharp guy…but he was dead wrong.
I think Komisar isn't saying Web 2.0 won't be huge in the future. He's just saying he wants to see something new and different.
When you get dozens of Facebook business plan clones every day, you want to send a message to the market: Give me something new.
Web 3.0 Beta Versions
So where's the money? It's in Web 3.0.
Right now, Web 3.0 is in beta. We see glimpses of it everywhere.
What is Web 3.0? It's an amalgamation of new concepts that people think will be the next big thing.
Wikipedia does a good job with its article on Web 3.0 of defining what Web 3.0 is, but they are missing something that I think is going to be a big component of Web 3.0 buzz in the next few years.
Specifically, connected devices is going to be a big part of Web 3.0.
Connected Devices and Web 3.0
Everything that we get out of the web (websites, Twittr, Flickr, YouTube, MySpace, Facebook, etc.) is delivered to us through a device.
These devices are relatively unintelligent. For the most part, they just do as they are told. They are not an active part of either our social networks or business networks, although we use them for both.
We are also very limited as to what devices we connect to the Web with. We've got computers, laptops, cell phones, and TVs.
But Web 3.0's connected device trend will push the Web into devices that are currently not viewed as information platforms.
Take the eStarling wifi photo frame. I can take a picture with my cell phone and send it directly to the photo frame on the other side of the country, or the world for that matter. I can subscribe to RSS feeds that send photos directly to my digital photo frame. I can go to SeeFrame and link myself to my friend's Facebook accounts, and then I will immediately get all of their photos sent to my digital wifi photo frame.
To me, that's a Web 3.0 beta concept that is going to show us the future. It's not the future…but it's showing us how to get there. It's still early days for Web 3.0.
That's just the beginning. With the improvements in hardware technology underway, we will soon have the equivalent of a high-end PC running on something as small as a cell phone. With geo-positioning information, we can trigger server-based applications to run and they in turn can work with other real-world physical devices.
So, maybe my cell phone sends out a GPS signal and a web server is constantly polling for my location. When I get within one block of my house, the server sends a signal to my garage door to open and it turns on the front porch light.
The data and information is out there…we are creating new data at historically high levels. But until we get the devices in line…have them be part of the equation…we are basically putting everything in the storage closet and letting it go unused. Think about the gigabytes of photos out there on hard drives and web servers…they are hungry for an eStarling frame or equivalent to rescue them and give them some purpose.
Yeah, I know that people were talking ages ago about seemingly crazy ideas like microchips embedded in wallpaper that will do X, Y and Z, and it hasn't happened. But as is always the case, today's crazy many is tomorrow's genius.
Devices, web servers, client applications, new killer apps that make life easier and better… that's where we are headed.
To me, that's what Web 3.0 is about, and it will be here before you know it.