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special issue

Number 4, 2009

IN THIS ISSUE
Q&A: Bob Metcalfe Chris Brogan
The past and future of l
the Web, networking, l  John Seely Brown
and energy l Jim Champy
l Jeff Clavier
l Dave Cullinane
life in information l Steve Duplessie
l Rob Enderle
Laura Fitton
Tim Berners- l
Seth Godin
Lee on his l
l Paul Graham
world-changing l Guy Kawasaki
invention l Paul Kedrosky
l Loic Le Meur
l Dany Levy
l  Sanjay Mirchandani

20
l Craig Newmark

The Web at l
l
Jeff Nick
Jakob Nielsen
l  Andrew Odlyzko
l Tim O’Reilly
l  Jeremiah Owyang
l  Howard Rheingold
l Steve Rubel
l Paul Saffo
l Dave Sifry
l David Vellante
webb chaPpell Jimmy Wales
l
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john goodman
Celebrating the beautiful mind
w About 10 minutes into the process
of editing my colleague Gil Press’s
fascinating interview with Bob
Metcalfe—the legendary co-creator of
the Ethernet standard and founder of
3Com—I was struck by a revelation.
This issue of ON is not only a celebration
of the Web’s 20th anniversary. It is
also a celebration of “the beautiful
minds,” which, collectively, created the
transformational technologies that now
permeate our daily lives: the World Wide
Web itself; the network and Internet
technologies that form its foundation;
and the ever-expanding constellation
of apps, services, and devices that
utilize the Web as a global platform for
communications and computing.

There at the Creation If you read


nothing else in this issue, I encourage
you to read the Metcalfe interview
and the Q&A with Sir Tim Berners-
Lee, whose genius it was to define the
“three adequate standards” (Metcalfe’s
words) that are the basis of the Web
and account for its astonishing flexibility,
longevity, and ubiquity. With birth 2
dates that bracket the first half of the %
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Celebrating the beautiful mind [continued]
Baby Boom generation, these two men are the (Wikipedia), Dany Levy (DailyCandy), and Tim
technology equivalent of first-generation rock O’Reilly (O’Reilly Media), and they were all asked
stars. Their observations and insights on the the same three questions:
genesis and evolution of the Web shine with the • How has the Web changed your life?
authenticity and intellectual wattage of those who • How has the Web changed business and society?
not only were “there at the creation,” but also • What do you think the Web will look like in 20
helped spark the creation. years?

Future Focused Equally important, they both Characteristic of all beautiful minds, their re-
remain deeply involved in exploring how the Web sponses—which are excerpted throughout the
can be harnessed to address some of the greatest issue—are wonderfully frank and varied, often un-
challenges we face as a society. Metcalfe’s vision expected, and colored with flashes of humor and
for increasing the efficiency of energy distribution self-revelation. Many share a genuine concern for
by emulating certain core characteristics of the the two-edged nature of new technology, which
Internet is compelling. Berners-Lee discusses how can always be used for good and evil alike.
we can accelerate discovery and collaboration In addition to all these voices, this special issue
on a large scale by freeing data from today’s of ON includes reflections and predictions from
information “silos” and allowing it to be linked both regular and occasional contributors—Jim
together via the Semantic Web. Champy, Rob Enderle, Jeff Nick, Sanjay Mirchan-
dani, and Steve Duplessie—and from correspon-
But Wait! There’s More! In addition to dents specially enlisted to describe how the Web
publishing these full-length interviews, we asked is affecting life in ascendant economies and devel-
regular columnists Tim Devaney and Tom Stein oping countries in Asia, Africa, and Latin America.
to do “mini-interviews” with 20 members of the On this 20th anniversary of the Web, there’s
Inforati: the entrepreneurs and opinion makers much to celebrate and reflect on and anticipate.
who have played a critical role in dragging us all And it’s all powered by the beautiful mind.
tweeting, IMing, and YouTubing into this next
stage of the Information Age. Those interviewed Christine Kane 3
include Craig Newmark (Craigslist), Jimmy Wales ONeditor@gmail.com
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Saffo, Paul.................................................28
Sifry, Dave.................................................20
Van Dam, Andy...................................61, 62
Vellante, David....................................17-18
Wales, Jimmy........................................... 27
Wells, H.G.................................................. 61

Places
Angola ....................................................... 41
Archive.org . .............................................64
Jin, Hai........................................................ 7 Argentina . ................................................30
People Kahle, Brewster.......................................64 China...................................................... 7, 27
Kawasaki, Guy............................................ 6 DailyCandy.com . ...................................... 5
Adams, Douglas......................................... 6 Kedrosky, Paul.......................................... 53 Gutenberg.org..........................................62
Battelle, John...........................................28 Le Meur, Loic............................................ 31 India.....................................................34-35
Berners-Lee, Tim............9, 21-26, 28, 59, Levy, Dany................................................... 5 Mauritius............................................46-47
62, 63, 64 Licklider, J.C.R...................................49, 61 Namibia...............................................38-39
Brogan, Chris............................................ 16 Massing, Michael...................................... 6 Twitter.com.....................10, 15, 31, 43, 53
Brown, John Seely..................................20 Metcalfe, Bob.................................8-14, 59 Venezuela.................................................. 56
Bush, Vannevar........................... 28, 61, 62 Mirchandani, Sanjay........................36-37 Well.com ............................................ 29, 62
Champy, Jim.................................51-52, 65 Nelson, Ted............................................... 61
Clavier, Jeff...............................................40 Newmark, Craig....................................... 15
Cullinane, Dave..................................54-55 Ng, Frederic........................................46-47 Perspectives
Duplessie, Steve............................... 42-43 Nick, Jeff.............................................32-33
Dyson, Esther........................................... 45 Nielsen, Jakob......................................... 47 Cloud computing............. 6, 32-33, 36-37,
Enderle, Rob.......................................44-45 Odlyzko, Andrew...............................48-50 48, 54-55, 58-60
Engelbart, Doug................................ 49, 62 O’Reilly, Tim............................................. 19 Cross-references..................................... 61
Fitton, Laura.............................................40 Owyang, Jeremiah.................................. 53 Future Web............... 19, 21-26, 27, 44-45
Fry, Jason.................................................. 57 Raj, Vidya............................................34-35 Hypertext/hypermedia............ 61, 62, 63
Godin, Seth................................................. 5 Recchimuzzi, Hugo................................. 41 Mobile Web............................... 6, 17-18, 19
Graham, Paul............................................ 31 Rheingold, Howard.................................29 Semantic Web.................. 5, 21-26, 32-33
Grillet, Fran.............................................. 56 Rubel, Steve.............................................. 16 Serendipity...........................................9, 49
Iavarone, Hugo.........................................30 Rusch, Rainer.....................................38-39 Traditional journalism/media 5, 15, 53

4
WEB TIME LINE % Page 61
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dumb and dumber


“The Web is impossibly stupid. It’s ar-
The End of Print?
chaic. It doesn’t do one percent of what it Dany Levy
ought to. It’s basically taking a model of a Founder and editorial director of DailyCandy
card catalogue and a few other items and 5 A lifestyle e-mail newsletter with a focus on style, food,
slapping electronics on top of it. I think and fashion, DailyCandy has three million subscribers for
that the active Web, which I’ve blogged its 28 editions.
about calling Web 4, is a Web that actu-
ally knows who I am and who I know and “I’m ambivalent about the demise
leverages those connections on my be- of print journalism. It’s a great op-
half. It will speak up when I want it to and portunity for DailyCandy, but at the
be quiet when I don’t. It’ll help me navi- same time—being a little bit of an
gate people. old-school girl—I really like having
“A simple example is when I’m at a something in my hands. I like read-
trade show and run into somebody, the ing a book. I like reading a news-
Web ought to tell me when I last saw paper. I like holding a magazine. I
them. It ought to tell me that six steps think that it’s about the anticipa-
behind me is somebody I went to college tion of waiting for the next issue to
with. It ought to tell me that the booth I’m come out and be on your doorstep,
passing by sells [product] for three per- and the thrill of getting it in your

adam mccauley
cent more than the booth down the hall, hands.
so I shouldn’t even bother sticking my “It’s the same thing with search-
head in there. The Web knows all these ing for a record in a record store. I
things. It’s just not good at telling me.” remember, back in the day, having
to stupidly sing a song to the guy behind the counter trying to
Seth Godin figure out who the musician was. Now you just type in a lyric,
Author and entrepreneur and you can find it like that.
5 Godin is the best-selling author of “With the Web, everything comes so easily. I wonder about index

10 books about marketing and work the future and the human ability to research and to seek and
including Tribes, The Dip, and to find, which is a really important skill. I wonder, will human 5
All Marketers are Liars. beings lose their ability to navigate?”
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Extra! Extra! Holographic Me


“The practice of journalism, “With the Web,
far from being leeched by I’ve become a
the Web, is being reinvented lot more digital.
there, with a variety of fas- So as the years
cinating experiments in the have gone by,
gathering, presentation, and I have gone
delivery of news.” from three or
—Michael Massing four meetings
a day to zero
meetings per
day. Everything
is phone calls,
e-mails, Skype, and this kind of stuff. Cisco
has TelePresence technology that makes it
(R)evolution look like you’re all in a board room, sitting
around the table; they also have a thing
“First we thought the where they do Star Wars-like Princess Lea
PC was a calculator. holograms. That’s my perfect world, when
Then we found out how I can make a keynote speech in Mumbai
to turn numbers into via hologram. Truly the best will be when
letters with ASCII—and there is a 3-D hologram of Guy giving a
we thought it was a speech. You can pass your hand through
typewriter. Then we him. That’s the ultimate.”
discovered graph-
ics, and we thought it Guy Kawasaki
was a television. With Founder of Garage Technology
the World Wide Web, Ventures and co-founder of Alltop. index

we’ve realized it’s a 5 Kawasaki describes himself as “a fire-


brochure.” hose that answers the question: What’s 6
—Douglas Adams interesting?”
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Connecting
Education and
Research in The ChinaGrid, which
started with 12 universi-
Google Gmail, Google Doc, and
Google Scholar.
China ties and has extended to
more than 40 currently, is
The Web is also an important
tool for me to do my research. The
the largest grid-computing first time I used it was in 1996,
platform in China. It lets while I was a visiting scholar in
users share some 2,000 Germany. It gave me a window to
different elite courses explore all the research materials I
among all the disciplines needed. Nowadays, I spend about
and universities via a six hours a day on the Web to do
World Wide Web portal. my research.
ChinaGrid partners are With the continued emergence
connected through a com- of cloud computing, the Internet
mon virtual hub that links will play even more important roles
them to the appropriate in all areas of people’s daily lives
application resources— in the future. Mobile devices and
By Professor Hai Jin from life sciences research to video smart phones will transform web
b The World Wide Web has become courses and e-learning.
an important unifying force for edu- The Internet has impacted my
technology, making it ubiquitous.

cation and research across China. country in many other ways as Professor Hai Jin is dean of the School of
In 2002, China’s Ministry of Edu- well. Chinese society now heavily Computer Science and Technology
cation launched the China Educa- depends on the Web in all areas, at Huazhong University of Science
tion and Research Grid project, a including news online, streaming and Technology, Wuhan, China,
grid-computing platform, which video, e-business, e-education, and where he also serves as director of index

enables universities across the online gaming. Especially in the the Cluster and Grid Computing
country to collaborate on research, cloud computing area, most activi- Lab and the Services Computing 7
scientific, and education projects. ties are now on the Web, such as Technology and System Lab.
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Bob Metcalfe has been involved—as a direct catalyst or a prominent
observer—in a number of key milestones spanning the evolution of the
IT industry: the birth of the Internet, the invention of Ethernet and
local area networks, and the rapid adoption of the World Wide Web
as the platform for linking information and people. Today, as a part-
ner in Polaris Ventures, he invests in clean, low-cost energy solutions. %

From
Ethernet
to
Enernet:
Bob Metcalfe on
Standards,
Serendipity
and
,

STUBS
christian northeast

index

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Metcalfe [continued]
In the 20 years since
the invention of the
World Wide Web,
� The Web demonstrates how
powerful [its architecture] is,
both by being layered on top of things that
were invented 17 years before, and giving rise
to amazing new functions in the following decades.”
what has surprised
you most? That’s the surprise. What this What has been a
bob metcalfe: Tim Berners- has demonstrated is the efficacy disappointment in the
Lee invented the URL, HTTP, of the layered architecture of the context of the World Wide
and HTML standards. None of Internet. The Web demonstrates Web—something you
them is particularly impressive; how powerful that is, both by be- expected that didn’t pan out?
so many high-tech people have ing layered on top of things that There’s no room for that. The
found them to be in some way were invented 17 years before Web has been so successful,
deficient. But Tim came up with and by giving rise to amazing there’s nothing disappointing
three adequate standards that, new functions in the following about it. Tim Berners-Lee tells
when used together, ignited the decades. Based on the artfulness this joke, which I hasten to retell
explosive growth of the Web. The of the design of the interfaces, because it’s so good. He was
power of good standards is they you give rise to serendipity. introduced at a conference as
leave you with no options. As In the design of his standards, the inventor of the World Wide
we used to say about Ethernet, Tim nailed down both expres- Web. As often happens when
“anything which is not prohibited sive power and simplicity, allow- someone is introduced that way,
is mandatory.” ing people to easily get started. there are at least three people
Think about that. We designed It’s those three standards, plus in the audience who want to
some plumbing at the lower lev- Mosaic, which added visual and fight about that, because they
els of the hierarchy, and 17 years graphical veneer, plus the evan- invented it or a friend of theirs index

later, Tim comes up with the gelical verve of Tim Berners-Lee invented it. Someone said, “You
World Wide Web, which Ether- himself, that were probably all didn’t. You can’t have invented it. 9
net and TCP/IP carried just fine. pivotal in that early takeoff. There’s just not enough time in %
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Metcalfe [continued]
the day for you to have typed in funeral at a time. These people was when I tweeted the fact
all that information.” That poor had to die. There was no way of that 111,111 squared equals
schlemiel completely missed the changing their minds. So, I un- 12,345,678,987,654,321. Then
point that Tim didn’t create the derstand generational ossifica- I noticed that in a lot of the re-
World Wide Web. He created tion. When my partner accused tweets there was a tag that I was
the mechanism by which many, me of it, I decided to participate unaware of: number sign, nerd
many people could create the in this phenomenon so as to bet- porn—this particular fact was
World Wide Web. ter understand it. considered nerd porn.
I’m beginning to find uses for
And the mechanism to Twitter. By tweeting my weight, In the early 1990s, you
connect not only informa- I have involved my followers in argued in an InfoWorld
tion, as was his original a support group to help me lose column against wireless
vision, but now also weight. Knowing that I’m going computing, advising readers
connecting people with Web to be tweeting my weight bears to “wire up your homes and
2.0 applications. You recently on my behavior. So there’s one stay there.”
started to use Twitter. Why? application—the support group Let’s divide that into two discus-
I’m using Twitter because one application. sions. I think that “wire up your
of my partners, Mike Hirshland, My daughter is about to gradu- home and stay there” is truer
accused me of having a genera- ate from college, and she’s look- than ever. We’re at a time now
tional problem. Young, hip people ing for a job. I have tweeted this where energy conservation is
use social networks, and old farts fact, and I’m actually getting the next big thing, and one of
don’t. inquiries about my daughter the opportunities we have is the
I used to be on the other side. from people who might want to substitution of communication
I was helping to introduce LANs see her résumé. So, that’s the job for transportation.
when there were all these old search application. But you ask about one of my
farts who thought that punch- One of my hobbies is math regrettable columns. In the index

cards were the way you did puzzles, and I tweet them now early 1990s, there was a wireless
computing. The joke was that and then. The most response bubble. There were a bunch of 10
Ethernet would be adopted one I’ve ever gotten on Twitter companies touting their modems %
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Metcalfe [continued]
and wireless mobility. But the that’s not nearly as interesting as people a rationale for building
modems didn’t work very well, these hyperbolic comments. bigger Ethernets. I drew a picture
and they were bigger than the I would like to point out that that put the three-node network
computers. I said that wireless there is a figure of speech called below a critical-mass point, ar-
mobile PCs would be like porta- hyperbole. It’s a Greek word. It’s guing that you needed to get to
potties: Porta-potties are good been around for a long time, so I some higher number to achieve
and useful things, but as a gen- offer it in defense of some of my critical mass. That was the dia-
eral rule, the bathrooms that we hyperbolic columns. gram that I gave to George Gilder
use have pipes. So yes, there will in 1993. He called it “Metcalfe’s
be some wireless computers, but Around the same time, Law,” for which I’m grateful. The
mostly we’ll use pipes because George Gilder coined the value of the network grows as
pipes have so much more capac- term “Metcalfe’s Law” to N-squared—“N” being the num-
ity. I was right about it in 1993: describe your idea that ber of machines connected to the
That bubble burst, and all those bigger networks are better. network.
mobile wireless companies went In the context of the layered
away. architecture of the Internet, Networking PCs was a novel
I went on to say in my column don’t you think one can apply idea at the time. So what did
that wireless computing will “Metcalfe’s Law” to the layer you tell people they could do
never be important. That’s where of networking computers with the network?
I went wrong, because along (the Internet), the layer of When Ethernet first came
came Wi-Fi. When I was writ- linking information (the out, our sales proposition was
ing my column, I was often torn Web), and finally, the layer of PFMTS—Print, File, Mail, Termi-
between being right and being in- connecting people (Web 2.0)? nal, Stubs.
teresting. Many columnists make That’s a great point. I’d never You may remember the IBM
the mistake of trying too hard to thought of it that way. It wasn’t PC XT that came out in 1982. It
be interesting. You use various even called Metcalfe’s Law when had a 10-megabyte disk on it. No index

forms of hyperbole, like “There I first used it. It was a slide in a one could imagine what you’d do
will never be anything like this.” 3Com sales presentation. The with 10 megabytes on your disk. 11
Well, maybe there will be. But goal of the slide was to give So the idea that you might want %
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Metcalfe [continued]


I’m using Twitter because
one of my partners ...
accused me of having a
generational problem. Young,
hip people use social net-
works, and old farts don’t,”
says Metcalfe, pictured here
atop Mount Kilimanjaro.

index

12
%
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Metcalfe [continued]
to buy one PC with a 10-mega- have a dumb terminal on their about nowadays: Energy or
byte disk on it, and then share it desk, and then they would have what you call the Enernet.
over the LAN with cheaper disk- a PC on their desk. That didn’t I’ve been on this Internet speak-
less PCs, had traction. The same make any sense. So you’d just ing tour, a two-year book tour
thinking applied to laser printers write software that allowed your without a book. I felt I had a valu-
that were new and expensive. So PC to be a dumb terminal so you able contribution to make, look-
share the printer, share the disk. could access the minicomputer ing at how we built the Internet
I like to think about it as shift- or the mainframe. and extracting the lessons from
ing gears. The second gear was Stubs were the APIs for ac- that, and then applying them to
LAN e-mail. The big e-mail car- cessing the underlying network- energy so we could solve energy
riers of the time, like AOL and ing functionality, opening con- problems sooner, better, faster.
MCI, didn’t consider it e-mail, nections, closing connections, I think there are a lot of lessons
because my e-mails never left etc. This is the serendipity idea to be learned, such as the value
the building. But already in the again. One such new idea came of decentralization, designing for
early days of the Internet, we from Novell, which used the abundance, or over-reliance on
observed heavy e-mail traffic be- stubs to share access—not to a Washington.
tween Internet nodes within the file, but to a database. This led I used to defend that analogy.
same building. We called it “in- to the first use of multi-user ac- I’ve now come full circle: I believe
cestuous traffic”; it was surpris- counting systems that ran on top that energy is the Internet’s next
ing, even embarrassing, because of the LAN. That’s how NetWare killer app. We did mail, we did
Internet e-mail was originally got its foothold and eventually telephone, we did commerce, we
conceived for long-distance com- blew past 3Com’s operating sys- did publishing, we did newspa-
munications. tem. pers (we’re about to kill newspa-
T stood for terminal. There pers), and now we, the Internet,
were all these minicomputers You have been drawing are going to solve energy. For
and mainframes still around in interesting analogies example, they talk about a smart index

those days. You couldn’t throw from your experience with grid. A smart grid is a bunch of
them out, and all of them had Ethernet and the Internet to folks out there who want to build 13
dumb terminals. People would what you invest in and speak new networks to solve energy %
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Metcalfe [continued]
and they call it the smart grid. What’s more, the other thing to deal with: video, mobile, and
But instead of building an entirely we did to telecom is we added embedded. On the other axis are
new network, another silo, why storage. The original Internet had the next three societal applica-
not use the Internet as the con- no storage in it. Then these ge- tions that the Web has to solve:
trol plane for the smart grid? niuses came up with the packet energy, healthcare, and educa-
But it’s even deeper than that. switch, with core memory for tion. I look in each of those nine
That is, the very structure of the storing packets. Then we added boxes for companies, opportuni-
energy network— the actual disks to our computers. If you ties, and progress.
transmission and distribution— look at the Internet now, there Those three kinds of traffic
needs to be like the Internet. So, is storage everywhere. So we’re have started arriving, but we
it needs to be de-synchronized. going to “storify” the energy have a long way to go. Video is
Right now, to put energy on the network. Right now, they have brand new on the Internet, as far
grid, you need to synchronize no place to put energy, so when as I’m concerned. The mobile
frequency and phase to get onto they have excess energy, they Internet has arrived, but it’s still
it because it clicks with this don’t know what to do with it. happening. Then there’s embed-
60-hertz centralized clock. Also, if renewables such as solar ded traffic. Ten billion microcon-
What the Internet did for com- and wind are going to play any trollers are shipped every year,
munications was to take the role, you need storage. I think and only a tiny fraction of those
clock out and put the clock in storage is going to be big in this are networked. Then there are
the packet so there wasn’t a big new energy network we have to the three new killer apps—en-
global ticking clock. I sent you build. ergy, healthcare, and educa-
the clock, and you were able to tion—just sitting there. The Web
tick the bits at the rate that I told What will the Web look like or has got to solve all three of those
you to, so we de-synchronized should look like in 20 years? problems.
the Net. We will end up de-syn- Thinking about the future of the What will the Web look like in
chronizing the power switching Web or the Internet, I came up 20 or 30 years? It will be com- index

network and end up with power with a three-by-three matrix. fortable with those three new
packet switching, like the Inter- On one axis are the three new modes of traffic, and it will be 14
net. kinds of traffic that the Web has solving those three problems. p
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This I Believe Pay as you read?


While 68 percent of the pub-
lishers responding to a 2009
survey sponsored by the Amer-
ican Press Institute said they
thought readers who objected
to paying for online content
would have a difficult time
replacing the information they
get from newspaper websites,
52 percent of readers said it
would be either “very easy” or
“somewhat easy” to do so.
adam mccauley

Afghanistan, support for serious peace between Israel and


the Palestinians, and, most importantly, the transforma-
tion of American government.
“There are now tools like 311 that allow people to get
Craig Newmark everyday government things done, like getting a pothole
Founder of Craigslist fixed or the garbage removed. More abstractly, people are
5 Through his personal blog, social networking experimenting with how to use the Web to get ordinary
channels, and speaking activities, Newmark uses citizens involved in the creation of government policy. The
the Web as a platform to support social causes idea is to complement our system of representative de-
important to him. mocracy with a system of online grassroots democracy.
“Mostly what I do to participate is chat with people in
“Personally speaking, the Web allows me to con- Washington and then spread word of these new experi- index

nect to a lot of people in a lot of ways, frequently ments through the social media. So, I use Twitter. I use
social but also involving things that I believe in: Facebook. I’m just one guy helping out. We need a lot 15
for example, support for veterans of Iraq and more, but it’s happening.”
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Genie Escapes bottle Jumping the Gate


“I think the defin- “One impact of the Web is it allows you to gate jump, which is
ing moment for me an expression my co-author Julien Smith and I use a lot: gate
came in 2004 to jumpers versus gatekeepers. We look at the Web as this set
2005 when I was of tools that allow people to try any idea without a whole lot
doing traditional of expense but with the op-
public relations. portunity to let your passion
I had started to come first. The example that
blog—blogs were we use is Perezhilton.com,
just emerging; they which is a pop culture site
weren’t in every niche yet—and I decided where essentially he says
to do a fun experiment. I said, ‘I bet I can mean things about stars all
stay up to date on sports and politics and day long.
tech and national news by just reading “He had approached
blogs and nothing else. I won’t read any People magazine to work
traditional media or watch any TV. I won’t there, and a lot of the lesser
even look at the ticker in Times Square.’ pop magazines, and they
I said, ‘Let’s try this for a week, and you said, ‘No, not really.’ Now
give me a current events quiz at the end, he’s handing them their hat
and let’s see if I get a passing grade,’ as far as web traffic on any
which I did. It actually made national day, and he’s got a much smaller operation. So, one of the
news. After that, there was no putting the things I say is he makes by far more revenue per employee
genie back in the bottle. I wasn’t going to than any of those people because he only has like six employ-
do traditional media relations anymore.” ees. The Web does that all the time. Anyone can start any-
thing with very little money, and then it’s just a meritocracy in
Steve Rubel terms of winning the attention wars.”
SVP, director of Insights for
Edelman Digital Chris Brogan index

5 Through his Steve Rubel Lifestream President, New Marketing Labs


site, Rubel comments on emerging 5 Brogan is a social media expert and co-author of the best- 16
technologies and trends. selling book Trust Agents.
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make better decisions.


I left IDC in 1999 near the peak of the Internet
bubble. I felt like a latecomer to the software
startup game, and things were moving very fast.
Netscape (as we knew it) had come and gone,
AOL was the granddaddy of the Internet, and
Yahoo was about to buy Broadcast.com—a firm
with a $50 million revenue run rate—for nearly
$6 billion. Web software at the time was plagued
by performance and quality problems, but these
were largely overlooked because of the access
and version-control benefits users received.

No Dot-Com, No Money

adam mccauley
We set out to stake our claim with a plan to build

Lessons Learned
Launching
enterprise software to analyze IT portfolios and
improve the performance of technology invest-
ments. We needed money, and VCs seemed a
logical route. So we wrote a business plan and
Two WWW-Era started shopping it. The only thing the VCs
Startups wanted to know was, “How are you a dot-com?”
Unfortunately, we didn’t have a good answer, and
By David Vellante while we received some term sheets, we passed.
This is the story of how my colleagues and I started This was 1999, and we were not to be stopped.
two companies in the Web era with virtually no out- In a few months, we raised more than $2 million
side money. Over the 10-year period in which we built from prospective customers, without giving up index

these companies, we witnessed a dramatic evolution a dime in equity. (Sometimes I miss 1999!) Our
in software development that drove us to apply two mindset was a bit different than “build it and 17
completely different strategies to help IT managers they will come.” It was more like “Make the sale %
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Lessons Learned [continued]
and then design, build, test, and port its many millions of users. We are constant reminders of the need
ship the software.” We had initial knew the software scaled. Also, it for speed.
product shipping within six months, had many features that allowed us It’s been amazing to watch the
and over the next several years, we to track changes in real time, col- evolution of software since 1999. I
spent many millions of dollars per- laborate with users, and manage realize, however, that much more
fecting the software and making it content versions. It was incredibly will be done in the next 10 years.
powerful, and the code was avail-
scale into an enterprise suite called The online and physical worlds will
Precision IQ. We considered our- able for free. The “V8 moment” for begin to collide as millions of mo-
selves a capital-efficient business us was that once we’d settled on bile devices provide inputs to the
and were very proud of our techni- Mediawiki, inside of a day and for Web. Further, the Web’s collective
cal achievements and the excellent less than $5, we had a fully func- intelligence will be harnessed by
client base we’d built. tioning version of the software, software that provides context to a
Fast forward to 2006. We re- customized for our new commu- user base with an insatiable ap-
examined the technology research nity. Wikibon was born. petite for information. Expect the
business and began envisioning From this experience, we learned pace of development to be non-
models like Wikipedia and Face- two major lessons about the power linear as the number of sensors
book applied to the analyst busi- of the Web-based open source on the Web increases by orders of
ness. We saw the confluence of model: magnitude.
software technology, community Instead of writing a business Sometimes I’m not sure if I
expertise, and content, and we plan, you can very quickly deploy a should be excited or scared. But
thought the time had come for product and launch a business. The one thing’s for certain: I don’t want
peers to interact and assist each business itself is the initial plan. to miss the ride.
other in making better technology Software development is no lon-
decisions. ger a barrier to entry for entrepre- david vellante spent 15 years at IDC,
neurs like us, but speed is. Compe- was the CEO of two startups, and is
Wiki World tition has been popping up in many a founder of The Wikibon Project, a index

In early 2007, we decided to deploy forms, which is good confirmation community of business technology
Mediawiki, the same open source that we’re on to something. But it practitioners. He can be reached on 18
software used by Wikipedia to sup- brings challenges and threats that Twitter at @dvellante.
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Device Driven
Tim O’Reilly
Founder of O’Reilly Media
5 An early evangelist for the Web, O’Reilly published The Whole Internet Users Guide & Catalog, which the
New York Public Library named as one of the most significant books of the 20th century.

“This next stage of the Web is be- it says, ‘There’s a tube station in
ing driven by devices other than four blocks.’ Point it down another
computers. Our phones now have street and it says, ‘There’s a tube
six or seven senses. The applica- station in 12 blocks.’ Everybody
tions that are coming will take thinks it’s recognizing the street.
data from our devices and the In fact, it has GPS and a compass.
data that is being built up in these What it’s recognizing is where
big user-contributed databases you are and in what direction your
and mash them together in new camera is pointing.
kinds of services. “Google knows where you are
“There is a program where you because the phone has a report-
can hold up your phone to the ing app. They know where you’re
radio and identify the song you’re going because it’s your next ap-
listening to. That’s a sensor that pointment in your calendar. It’s
you’re carrying around with you. able to recognize your voice be-
You can sign up for something cause it has a microphone—ears
called the Quake Catcher Network, which uses a for the application—and it has speech recognition.
distributed network of motion sensors that already You say, ‘Take me to my next appointment,’ and bang!
exists in phones and laptops to detect earthquakes. It is these cooperating databases and cooperating index

There is an augmented-reality app called Nearest sensors that will enable augmented reality. I think
Tube that is put out by a company in London. You real-time translation is something that Google is very 19
hold up your phone and point it down one street and much working on.”
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A New Kind of Intellectual Spinal tap


Infrastructure “We’re going to see
some really inter-
“In many ways, looking at how an idea unfolds through time esting applications
gives you a much better sense of what that idea really is. based around the
For people who are interested in always being on the edge fact that every single
of whatever their topic is, they have to be able to reach out one of us right now is
to understand what the current thinking is and to partici- walking around with
pate in discussions and development of those ideas. a pretty fascinat-
“When I ran Xerox PARC, I had access to one of the ing platform we call
world’s best intellectual infrastructures: 250 research- the cell phone. It’s a
ers, probably another 50 craftspeople, and six reference mobile computer that does voice input, that
librarians, all in the same building. Then one day to go cold does voice and sound output, that can take
turkey—when I did my first retirement—was a complete video, that has GPS and a compass on it,
shock. But with the Web, in a year or two, I had managed and that is connected to the Internet.
to hone a new kind of intellectual infrastructure that in “When I start thinking 20 years out or
many ways matched what I already had. That’s obviously even further, I can’t wait to get that implant
the power of the Web, the power to connect and interact in the back of my spine that just plugs that
at a distance. It gives you the ability to peer into embryonic platform directly into your nervous system,
ideas and watch or participate in their development, which maybe over the optic nerve. Think about
is such a powerful way to really understand the structure of the opportunity and the level of connected-
the idea.” ness and the amount that we’ll be able to

$ !! $ !! $ !! do when you even get rid of the computer


as part of the interface and get all this in-
put and output directly into your biological
John Seely Brown systems.”
Self-described “chief of confusion”
5 The former chief scientist of Xerox Corporation, Brown Dave Sifry index

thinks, speaks, and writes on topics that include the man- 5 Sifry is a software entrepreneur and
agement of radical innovation, digital youth culture, and blogosphere icon. He founded Technorati, a 20
new forms of communication and learning. leading blog search engine.
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In 1989, while a fellow at CERN, the European Particle Physics
Laboratory in Geneva, Switzerland, Tim Berners-Lee invented the
World Wide Web. Today, he is 3Com Founders Professor of Engi-
neering at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), where
he serves as director of the World Wide Web Consortium (W3C),
an international standards body dedicated to leading the Web to
its full potential. Sir Tim is the author of Weaving the Web. Jason
Rubin spoke with him at his office in Cambridge, Massachusetts. %
From the

webb chappell
Web of
Documents
to the Web
of Data:

Tim Berners-Lee on
the Future
of His
Invention 73
index

21
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berners-lee [continued]
Twenty years on,

I believe that 20 years from now, people will look back
at where we are today as being a time when the Web of
the World Wide Web documents was fairly well established. ... The Web of
has proven itself data, though, which we call the Semantic Web, would be
seen as just starting to take off.”
both ubiquitous
and indispensible. we should realize that, and we are still fairly “pre-Web.” Social
Did you anticipate are constantly changing it, and networking sites, for example,

it would reach this it’s very important that we do so.


I believe that 20 years from
are still siloed; you can’t share
your information from one site
status, and in this now, people will look back at
where we are today as being a
with a contact on another site.
Hopefully, in a few years’ time,
time frame? time when the Web of docu- we’ll see that quite large cat-
tim berners-lee: I think while ments was fairly well established, egory of social information truly
it’s very tempting for us to look such that if someone wanted Web-ized, rather than being held
at the Web and say, “Well, here it to find a document, there’s a in individual lockdown applica-
is, and this is what it is,” it has, of pretty good chance it could be tions.
course, been constantly growing found on the Web. The Web of
and changing—and it will con- data, though, which we call the You mentioned a “small
tinue to do so. So to think of this Semantic Web, would be seen community” of people who
as a static “This is how the Web as just starting to take off. We see the value of the Semantic
is” sort of thing is, I think, unwise. have the standards but still just Web. Is that a repeat
In fact, it’s changed in the last a small community of true be- occurrence of the struggle
few years faster than it changed lievers who recognize the value 20 years ago to get people to
before, and it’s crazy for us to of putting data on the Web for understand the scope and index

imagine this acceleration will people to share and mash up and potential impact of the World
suddenly stop. So yes, the 20- use at will. And there are other Wide Web? 22
year point goes by in a flash, but aspects of the online world that It’s remarkably similar. It’s very %
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berners-lee [continued]
funny. You’d think that once it become tremendously fired of people is really important.
people had seen the effect of up. Once somebody has real- When you get people who are
Web-izing documents to pro- ized what it would be like to have trying to solve big problems like
duce the World Wide Web, linked data across the world, curing AIDS, fighting cancer, and
doing likewise with their data then they become very enthusi- understanding Alzheimer’s dis-
would seem the next logical step. astic, and so we now have this ease, there are a huge number of
But for one thing, the Web was a corps of people in many coun- people involved, all of them with
paradigm shift. A paradigm shift tries all working together to make half-formed ideas in their minds.
is when you don’t have in your it happen. How do we get them communi-
vocabulary the concepts and the cating so that the half of an idea
ideas with which to understand Do you see the Semantic in one person’s head will connect
the new world. Today, the idea Web as enabling greater with half of an idea in somebody
that a web link could connect to collaboration between and else’s head, and they’ll come up
a document that originates any- among parties, as opposed to with the solution?
where on the planet is complete- the point-to-point or point- That’s been a goal for the Web
ly second nature, but back then to-many communication of documents, and it’s certainly a
it took a very strong imagination that seems more prevalent in goal for the Web of data, where
for somebody to understand it. the current Web? different pieces of data can be
Now, with data, almost all the The original web browser was a used for all kinds of different
data you come across is locked browser editor and it was sup- things. For example, a genomist
in a database. The idea that you posed to be a collaborative tool, may suspect that a particular
could access and combine data but it only ran on the NeXT work- protein is connected to a certain
anywhere in the world and im- station on which it was devel- syndrome in a cell line, search
mediately make it part of your oped. However, the idea that the for and find data relating to each
spreadsheet is another paradigm Web should be a collaborative area, and then suddenly put index

shift. It’s difficult to get people place has always been a very together the different strains of
to buy into it. But in the same important goal for me. I think data and discover something 23
way as before, those who do get harnessing the creative energy new. And this is something he %
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berners-lee [continued]
can do with the owners of the

webb chappell
respective pieces of data, who
might never have found each
other or known that their data
was connected. So the Web of
data will absolutely lead to great-
er collaboration.

Is your vision of the Semantic


Web one in which data is
freely available, or are there
access rights attached to it?
A lot of information is already
public, so one of the simple
things to do in building the new
Web of data is to start with that
information. And recently, I’ve
been working with both the U.K.
government and the U.S. govern-
ment in trying not only to get
more information on the Web,
but also to make it linked data.
But it’s also very important that
systems are aware of the social
aspects of data. And it’s not just index

access control, because an au-


thorized user can still use the 24
right data for the wrong purpose. %
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berners-lee [continued]
So we need to focus on what are facturing schedule to meet our gerous, or when an ecological
the purposes for accessing dif- demand. However, we do not catastrophe happened. We can
ferent kinds of data, and for that license you to use it to give to then identify patterns in a broad
we’ve been looking at account- our competition to modify their range of data types that resulted
able systems. pricing.” in something serious happening,
Accountable systems are You need to be able to ask and that will allow us to identify
aware of the appropriate use of the system to show you just the when these patterns recur, and
data, and they allow you to make data that you can use for a given we’ll be better able to prepare for
sure that certain kinds of infor- task because how you wish to or prevent the situation.
mation that you are comfortable use it will be the difference in I think when we have a lot of
sharing with people in a social whether you can use it. So we data available on the Web about
context, for example, are not able need systems for recording what the world, including social data,
to be accessed and considered the appropriate use of data is, ecological data, meteorological
by people looking to hire you. For and we need systems for helping data, and financial data, we’ll be
example, I have a GPS trail that people use data in an appropriate able to make much better mod-
I took on vacation. Certainly, I way so they can meet an ethical els. It’s been quite evident over
want to give it to my friends and standard. the last year, for example, that
my family, but I don’t necessar- we have a really bad grasp of
ily wish to license people I don’t Ultimately, what is one of the the financial system. Part of the
know who are curious about me most significant things the reason for that might be that we
and my work and let them see Semantic Web will enable? have insufficient data from which
where I’ve been. Companies may One thing I think we’ll be able to draw conclusions, or that the
want to do the same thing. They to do is to write intelligent pro- experts are too selective in which
might say, “We’re going to give grams that run across the Web data they use. The more data
you access to certain product of data looking for patterns when we have, the more accurate our index

information because you’re part something went wrong—like models will be.
of our supply chain and you can when a company failed, or when 25
use it to fine-tune your manu- a product turned out to be dan- After 20 years, what is it %
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berners-lee [continued]
about the Web—either because there is no common from the mundane to the
about its current or future format for this data to become grotesque. Do you think
capabilities—that excites integrated into my devices. humanity is using this
you the most? Now, the vision of Semantic incredible invention of yours
One of the things that gets me Web is that the seminar’s web appropriately?
the most excited are the mash- page has information pointed at Yes. The Web, after all, is just a
ups, where there’s one market data about the event. So I just tool. It’s a powerful one, and it
of people providing data and tell my computer I’m going to reconfigures what we can do, but
there’s a second layer of people be attending that seminar and it’s just a tool, a piece of white
mashing up the data, pick- then, automatically, there is a paper, if you will. So what you
ing from a rich variety of data calendar that shows things that see on it reflects humanity—or at
sources to create a useful new I’m attending. And automati- least the 20 percent of humanity
application or service. A clas- cally, an address book I define that currently has access to the
sic example of a mash-up is as having in it the people who Web.
when I find a seminar I want have given seminars that I’ve at- As a standards body, the W3C
to go to, and the web page has tended within the last six months is not interested in policing the
information about the sponsor, appears, with a link to the pre- Web or in censoring content, nor
the presenter, the topic, and the senter’s public profile. And auto- should we be. No one owns the
logistics. I have to write all that matically, my PDA starts pointing World Wide Web, no one has a
down on the back of an enve- towards somewhere I need to be copyright for it, and no one col-
lope and then go and put it in my at an appropriate time to get me lects royalties from it. It belongs
address book; I have to put it in there. All I need to do is say, “I’m to humanity, and when it comes
my calendar; I have to enter the going to that seminar,” and then to humanity, I’m tremendously
address in my GPS—basically, the rest should follow. optimistic. After 20 years, I’m
I have to copy this information still very excited and extremely index

into every device I use to man- The Web is such a mélange hopeful. p
age my life, which is inefficient of useful, noble content and 26
and time-consuming. This is stuff that runs the gamut
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Number 1 video vision C


Millions of users “One of the things I would like to see in the future
is large-scale, collaborative video projects. Imagine
300 what the expense would be with traditional meth-
ods if you wanted to do a documentary film where

C
you go to 90 different countries and in each one,
you do a one-minute clip asking a person on the
street what they think of a certain question like,
The number ‘What do you think of global warming?’ or, ‘What do
of Internet you think about Obama being elected?’
users in China “To get an interesting 90-minute film, you’d need
jumped nearly 900 short videos because many of them won’t be
200 42 percent to that great. Then you have to translate them because

C
298 million you’re talking to people in 60 or 70 languages. That
by the end of would be an enormous undertaking.
2008 from “But with the Web, a large community online
the previous could easily make that happen. They get 10 or 20
year, according videos per country. They upload them all. The com-
to the China munity starts working, finding the funny ones, the
Internet touching ones, the thoughtful and serious ones—
Network because you want to have a mix. That’s just one

C
100 Information example of something you couldn’t do in the tradi-
Center tional way but that you could do with a large com-
(CNNIC), a munity online.”
state-affiliated
research group, Jimmy Wales
making China Founder of Wikipedia
the country 5 Wales is co-founder of Wikia, a consumer- index

with the most publishing platform that enables communities to

0
Internet users
in the world.
create their own wikis around shared interests such
as food, politics, and entertainment.
C 27

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, W
Think Big, Think Long X 8
9
“When data
of any sort are
Paul Saffo
S placed in stor-
Technology forecaster age, they are
5 Saffo explores technological change and its impact on busi- filed alpha-
ness and society. He teaches at Stanford University and is a betically or
visiting scholar in the Stanford Media X research network. numerically,
and informa-
“The Internet indirectly came out tion is found (when it is) by tracing it
of the space program, DARPA’s down from subclass to subclass. ... The
research, and the whole climate human mind does not work that way. It
of ‘anything’s possible,’ the moon operates by association. With one item
shot, Apollo, and all that. The In- in its grasp, it snaps instantly to the next
ternet resulted from our going into that is suggested by the association of
space, and the Web came out of thoughts, in accordance with some intri-
CERN, which of course is concerned cate web of trails carried by the cells of
with going in precisely the opposite the brain.”  —Vannevar Bush, 1945
direction: into the very small, into
the inner space of atoms.
“The parallels for today are hugely important. ARPANET
and then the Internet took off because we had an environ- “What does it mean … to
ment where people were allowed to think big and think long, become immortal through
and to build things that nobody was sure would actually words pressed in clay—or
take off. I love that story of when Tim [Berners-Lee] took his … through words formed
proposal to his boss, who scribbled on it, ‘Sounds exciting, in bits and transferred
though a little vague.’ But Tim was allowed to do it. over the Web? Is that
“I’m alarmed because at this moment in time, I don’t think not what every person
there are any institutions out there where people are still al- longs for—to die, but to be index

lowed to think so big. While we celebrate the arrival of this known forever?”
marvelous thing, the big question we should be asking our- —John Battelle 28
selves is, ‘Are we stifling the creation of the future Webs?’”
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35 years of connecting
“I first started getting excited about groups of people legends, and hoaxes. Scurrilous political rumors are
communicating socially in 1985, when I became in- believed, stupid things like ‘pass this e-mail along, and
volved in the WELL, which I called a virtual communi- Bill Gates will pay you $5.’ And, more seriously, people
ty. It was based on the computer that cost about three with illnesses are getting great information but also
quarters of a million dollars, and you had to get bad information.
an expensive software license to run your “My personal challenge, what I’m work-
own BBS. ing on for the next few years, is lit-
“Now, you probably carry 10,000 eracy. I’ve written about 21st century
times that much computer power literacy, about attention literacy,
in your pocket, with your iPhone about Twitter literacy, and about
or BlackBerry. And you don’t crap detection 101. (And by the
have to pay for any license. You way, it’s legit to use the term
can start a Google group. You ‘crap detection.’ It’s a quote from
can create a Meebo chat room Hemingway.) People need to
and drag it to a Netvibes RSS ag- cultivate and understand how to
gregator. All are free. Who would deploy their attention, participa-
have thought that all the knowl- tion, collaboration, ability to deter-
edge in the world would be available mine the credibility of information,
at your fingertips by asking a question and awareness of how to use networks.
correctly to a search engine? We take It’s both a personal necessity and a re-
these things for granted, but I’m still marveling at sponsibility to society.”
it.
“Economically, politically, socially, and culturally, Howard Rheingold
the Web allows people to do things together that Writer and educator
they weren’t able to do before. I think in the long run, 5 The author of Smart Mobs, The Virtual Commu- index

that’s the most important thing. But I want to add one nity, and other books, Rheingold writes, speaks, and
caveat. I think we are in danger of drowning in a sea blogs on the social media classroom, cooperative com- 29
of misinformation, disinformation, spam, porn, urban munities, and other topics.
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The Web:
A Huge Turn
In Our
History net has revolutionized
how we do business.
capabilities.
After having worked in the IT

Argentina
Back when GIRE was business for 23 years, I can’t imag-
founded in 1991, our ine life without the Internet and
files interchange con- the Web. I rely on it for the news,
sisted of 5 1/4-inch weather, social networks, business
diskettes or tape reels. and pleasure trips, papers, forums,
By Hugo A. Iavarone In 1994, we started to transmit blogs, college finals, the Tampa-
b The World Wide Web has been
a life-changing experience for my
our files using BBS software with
19200-baud modems. This process
laya’s height, renting cars, buying
food, checking my bank account,
company and for me personally. was slow and insecure. chatting with friends, finding the
GIRE is an Argentinean company When GIRE first started using the history of any civilization, checking
specializing in solutions integration Internet in 1998, the transforma- the dollar and euro exchange rates,
for commercial transactions that tion was really fantastic. We had no music, radio programs, checking
involve cash flow and information congestion in the telephone lines. calories ingested, video viewing,
with high security standards. A We were able to buy network cards and many other things.
typical example of one of our key almost immediately as opposed I am truly convinced that my life
solutions is the taxes and services to waiting for months. We shared has undergone a 180-degree transi-
payment system, called Rapipago. experiences about configuration tion, in an amazing and extremely
It offers a service that was provided problems and other technical solu- positive way. I am now able to
in the past by financial institutions. tions with other users. understand why information is so
GIRE’s customers span a wide Later on, we added e-mail solu- vital for our lives, both at work and
range of major industries and in- tions, practically replacing the use at home.
clude telecommunications provid- of telephones and our paper index

ers, credit card companies, and memos. This provided us with the Hugo A. Iavarone is chief information
banks. richest communication system in officer at GIRE, Buenos Aires, 30
Over the past decade, the Inter- our history, including tracking Argentina.
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ship anywhere
“For businesses, that metaphor of the
(Global) Village Boy
information superhighway, tired as it is, “I was born in a village in the South
turned out to be exactly right. Inventing of France. Especially if you were
things like railroads, canals, and high- in the countryside, you had few
ways turned out to be good for people friends, maybe 10 or 20, whom you
who make physical stuff because they hung out with. Now I interact daily
could move that stuff around. Consum- with hundreds and sometimes
ers don’t just have to buy stuff from the thousands of people. I have about
local supplier. They can buy it from who- 30,000 followers on Twitter, 6,000
ever is best in their whole catchment on Facebook, and I get 1,000 piec-
basin. The Internet has done that for es of feedback a day.
information. You don’t just have to use “It has become for me and so
whatever information is local. You can many other people the most important way to do anything. It
ship information to anyone anywhere. ranges from twittering about a restaurant because you can’t
“The key is to have the right filter. That decide which sushi bar is better, to buying a product or finding
filter is often what startups make. So, a a job.
startup making a CRM tool will enable “I organized a conference in Paris where we gathered 2,000
a business to filter the huge amount of people from many countries. I needed to partner with an air-
interactions with customers and figure line company, so I posted a tweet, ‘Does anybody know any-
out: Are there patterns? Are a bunch one in Air France?’ In two hours, I had a contact, and in two
of people complaining about the same weeks, we had done a partnership.
thing so we should respond quickly? “So, this is just magic. When you understand that, of course
Imagine what it would be like to try to do you share and you focus a lot on that because it’s just much
that with index cards and physical mail.” more powerful than anything else.”

Paul Graham Loic Le Meur


Co-founder of Y Combinator CEO of Seesmic index

5 Graham’s firm has funded more than 5 Seesmic helps users organize access to social networking
140 early-stage startups, most of them apps. Le Meur has been named one of the 25 most influential 31
web-related. people on the Web by BusinessWeek.
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the most relevant Making Content

adam mccauley
talents—existed Consumer-Centric
within the company. The Web has also given us new
The Web has tools and models for managing
changed this land- how information is assembled and

Cloud Computing scape in truly pow-


erful ways, allowing
presented. In the past, the display
of information was constructed in
Standing on the us to find relevant
people, informa-
a rigid, hierarchical way based on a
vendor’s best guess about what the
Shoulders of the Web tion, and resources
in a global manner,
average user wants or needs, or
based on what the producer wants
By Jeff Nick limited only by the security bound- to deliver. Today, users can control
The Web has given us new oppor- aries that we set in place. At EMC, and customize what information
tunities and tools for collaboration, this new way to collaborate has is delivered to them. With Web-
information access and visualiza- facilitated a new model for inno- inspired mash-up capabilities, us-
tion, and IT service-based con- vation and product development. ers can assemble information from
sumption, ushering in the new era The EMC Innovation Network is different sources and define how it
of cloud computing. based on the principle that innova- is going to appear on the screen.
Before the dawn of the Web, if tion is an open process involving EMC and other leading IT ven-
you wanted to collaborate, you had multiple players from different dors are embracing this shift from
to bring together everyone in the organizations, coming together in a producer-centric to consumer-
same room at the same time. The global network to share ideas and centric content. For example, EMC
odds of having all the right players their passion for a specific topic Data Center Insight allows IT ad-
present were slim. This was not of research and to incubate these ministrators to mash up informa-
only due to the barriers created by ideas to realization. It allows us to tion from different sources to yield
travel time and cost, but because, discover and leverage EMC talent much deeper insights about the IT index

in large global organizations, it was anywhere in the world and to build infrastructure. This is next-genera-
difficult to know where all your a community of interest that can tion IT, and coming up behind it is 32
potential collaborators—those with also be open to outside partners. the next-generation Semantic Web. %
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Cloud Computing [Continued]
Up Ahead: the Semantic Web (which exists in many different for- relation to where we are going with
Similar to how translators break mats), but they also must access cloud computing. The ability to
down language barriers so that data that is created and stored by find, allocate, and consume IT as a
information is comprehensible to others. It is neither desirable nor service has its roots in the Web’s
a diverse audience of listeners, so feasible to move all the data to one mechanisms for discovery and
too will the Semantic Web unleash place. We need to leave the data navigation. The Internet provides
information that is now stored where it is today but be able to find us with the semantics to interact
in silos—tied to specific schema it, catalogue it, classify it, interact with end points and exchange
and access methods—so it can be with it, translate it, and update it all “information about information.”
seamlessly discovered and ac- along the supply chain. In a similar way, we are now start-
cessed over the Internet by all the Our ability to create an electron- ing to exchange information about
people and applications that need ic healthcare record system will be resources at Internet scale. The
it. By unlocking data from many predicated on our ability to build Web has been a stepping stone to
heterogeneous sources, then as- an information exchange where our ability to actually interact with
sembling and linking it into sets of information can be extracted from and federate to resources that are
information that are contextually these proprietary data sources, distributed globally.
meaningful to the user, the Se- translated into the form fit for Cloud computing is based on
mantic Web will allow us to gain the next participant in the sup- Web-facilitated collaboration, the
deeper, richer insight into the vast ply chain, and then updated and Web-inspired idea of consumer-
quantities of data being accumu- stored back into the original data centric information mash-ups, and
lated in every industry and organi- sources in a secure and authorita- now Web-based discovery and
zation. tive manner. This kind of semantic access of IT resources as a service.
Take healthcare, for example. information exchange is the busi- Semantic Web-based information
In the healthcare supply chain— ness corollary to the Semantic exchanges will follow. As such,
which includes not only providers, Web. cloud computing stands on the
but also insurers, regulators, and shoulders of the Web. index

other parties—we have many dif- The Semantics of Cloud


ferent players. They are not only Computing jeff nick is senior vice president and 33
creators and custodians of data The Semantic Web also has a cor- chief technology officer at EMC.
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Increasingly
Interconnected

By Dr. Vidya Raj C


INDIA to pay more than a dollar an hour globe—thereby making the world
b Over the years, the mode of ex-
pressing has changed significantly.
at a cyber café. With advance-
ments in technology, the Internet
a small place.
It has gone from being a store- index

I remember a few years back, has become highly affordable and house for information to an outlet
the exercise of trying to get con- accessible to all, spinning its web for socialization and commerce. 34
nected to the Web, when I had of interconnectivity around the As the Internet grows—quite liter- %
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India [Continued]
ally, by the hour—India is keeping that the Web has revolutionized that project. If you want directions
pace. While the national rate of the way we communicate. Now in- to the hospital, the address of the
Internet penetration is only seven stead of postal addresses, we have nearest saloon, or information on
percent, its use is growing rapidly, e-mail IDs, and instead of post the latest diet, it’s all out there on
and millions of young people in offices being crowded, Internet the Web.
today’s generation are transferring cafés are. The Web has given us India’s IT industry is one of the
more of their day-to-day activi- an enormous luxury in the way we fastest-growing in the world. It is
ties from the physical realm to one communicate. Sitting right in our currently ranked third worldwide
that exists beyond their computer room, we can communicate with a due to domestic and international
screens. Some examples: person sitting seven seas away, via market demand. Though ‘IT’ is a
Self-Expression: The Web has cer- net chatting and e-mail. small word, it converts the entire
tainly changed the way ordinary Entertainment: With the Web by world into a global village. Over
people express their feelings and your side, you don’t need a TV or the last decade, India became one
beliefs. Earlier, there was no place radio for entertainment anymore. of the most important offshoring
where citizens could widely share You can catch your favorite movies, centers in the Asia-Pacific region.
their thoughts. But with the Web, serials, and music on the Internet. The total revenue from IT is antici-
anyone can simply start a blog and In fact, you can even play the lat- pated to be US $73 to 75 billion by
get the feedback of people. est games on the Web. And web 2010. Over a million professionals
Shopping: The Web has been the surfing these days is probably the are part of this growing industry.
most wonderful discovery of all best entertainment available. You This skilled workforce will help
time, especially for people who love can read the latest gossip, catch ensure India keeps pace with the
to shop! Now you don’t even have to the international news, or even date latest trends as the Internet con-
step out of your home. From grocer- online. tinues to grow in popularity.
ies to clothes to gadgets, you can Information: The Web is one huge
get all of it right at your doorstep well of information. Just go to any Dr. Vidya Raj C is a professor and head
with net shopping, purchasing your search engine and type whatever of the Department of Computer index

favorite items by making an online topic you want to search about. Science & Engineering at The
payment. No longer do you have to spend National Institute of Engineering 35
Communication: There is no doubt hours in the library to complete in Mysore, India.
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Middle East’s first online banking solutions and was


particularly excited by the “e-opportunity.” The con-
venience that e-business brought and the speed at
which we were rolling out services for customers—it
was mind-boggling and easy to feel passionate about.

The Shackles Evolve


But the shackles never disappeared. These days,
they come not from undependable connectivity but
from non-stop connectivity. We can be shackled to
The Web I our workplaces every waking moment if we wish. On
a personal level, though, I’m not sure it’s wise to be

Know kathleen dooher


online 24x7. Everyone needs downtime, family time,
balance. Our job in IT is to enable that balance.
My dad was in the shipping business. His two com-
munication choices were the telephone and the Telex
machine. He didn’t take that Telex home with him,
By Sanjay Mirchandani however. Dad had downtime, knowing that in his
I still remember when I first realized that the Web office in the morning, he’d find the previous night’s
would be big. But I also sensed it would be “freedom Telexed shipping assignments waiting.
with shackles.” Freedom, in getting information with Even just a few years ago, it was still perfectly ac-
exhilarating speed. Shackles, in the form of unpredict- ceptable to have your e-mailed question to someone
able access, limited dial-up ports, and tied-up phone answered 24 or 48 hours later. Today, the mindset is
lines. different. When people initiate contact, they expect
The inconvenience of being shackled by immature a response right away and don’t care if you’re in Tim-
technology was overshadowed by a collective excite- buktu at the time. If you don’t reply, they may throw index

ment: We certainly became hooked quickly. And of a “Where are you?” message on your Facebook wall.
course, anyone working in IT saw the Web’s potential. Web 2.0 technology has blurred our consumer and 36
I was part of the team that helped create one of the business lives. %
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the web i know [Continued]
Merging Our Personas the individual. With the social Web Seeing Patterns in the Cloud
Productivity and personal connec- comes a responsibility to be sen- There is a massive parallel in
tivity exemplify Web 2.0. Now, it’s sible. my mind between what hap-
the etiquette of business that needs I think the next wave will center, pened in the early, potential-
to fold itself into the Web 2.0 prod- in large part, on a balancing of our rich days of the World Wide
uct. That brings me to the non-pro- work and our personal personas. Web and what cloud comput-
ductivity dangers of the Web. We For example, a lot of us carry two ing could offer us. We know we
don’t want to tell employees how mobile phones to keep our business can take this very ambitious
to spend their day; they understand and personal contacts and e-mail next step into the cloud—into
which tasks they must complete. messages separated. At some the future of information tech-
Again, it’s a balance. If I’m having point, technology will allow us to nology—and not trip. We know
lunch in my office, I do go online to carry one device while maintaining it because we remember how
read what people are saying about our two personas. our embracing of the Web
EMC. That kind of web surfing Businesses will eventually bring changed everything. The Web’s
enhances my productivity. It makes the experiences that we have as early days centered on reading
my day more relevant. consumers fully into our work- information. Then e-commerce
Similarly, if I’m prepping for a places. It almost happened with made companies reachable
customer visit, I like to learn what Web 1.0, when we learned how to worldwide. With cloud com-
the customer’s business priorities obtain information and transact puting, businesses can achieve
are. Online, it takes me five min- commerce. Now, with Web 2.0, even more massive, secure
utes to do that. And afterward, I am everyone is trying to figure out how scalability.
more attuned to what’s important to make social media work in a I sensed that the Web was
to that customer. But checking tech business environment. A lot of that going to be a big deal 20 years
blogs or corporate sites at lunch is script remains unwritten. I can’t ago, but now, I realize, I had no
not the same thing as spending half wait to see what happens. idea just how big it could be.
the day monitoring a ballgame on- Inside the cloud, another next- index

line and chatting about it. Our job in Sanjay Mirchandani is senior vice generation experience awaits
IT is to give people the opportunity president and chief information us. The technology parallels 37
for productivity. The rest is left to officer at EMC. are there.
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Namibia
Goes Online
By Rainer Rusch little visibility internationally, tour- infrastructure. An array of web-
b The evolution of the World Wide
Web has had a huge effect on
ism was largely limited to people
who either had friends or relatives
sites provides a window on popular
eco-tourism destinations, including
Namibia, providing a vital link for living here or knew people who had Internet-based booking services
businesses, organizations, and visited previously. In turn, with- and sites where lodges and game
individuals. But perhaps its biggest out enough business to support a ranches can provide information.
impact has been in helping to make vibrant industry, there were few Beyond tourism, many other
eco-tourism a main industry for the lodges and game ranches. businesses make extensive use of
country. the Web to provide services and
In the past, tourism relied on A Worldwide Window operate online marketplaces, sell-
word-of-mouth advertising, flyers, on Namibia ing anything from property and index

pamphlets, and expos to promote Today, that situation has changed, cars to prepaid electricity. Every
Namibia’s unique natural environ- due in part to a modernization of major organization has a web pres- 38
ment and diverse wildlife. But with the country’s backbone and related ence to promote its products and %
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Namibia [Continued]
services, and the government uses For my employer, which is an IT and it has a high impact on my life.
the Internet to provide the latest service provider, the Web is a cru- First thing upon arriving in the of-
public communications, including cial tool not only to get the latest fice, I usually check my e-mails and
details about upcoming elections. software and patches, but also for read the latest technology infor-
technical or product information. mation. Getting the latest news
Connecting Across Distances Most of our communication with on technology and doing research
After Mongolia, Namibia is the partners or vendors is done by e- about various areas would be very
least densely populated major mail, which helps drive down costs. difficult without the Web, since Na-
country in the world, with its two Internet and e-mail are critical mibia does not have a broad range
million people scattered across communication tools for custom- of technology publications.
320,000 square miles. This poses ers. A few years ago, e-mail and Being without the Web for a few
challenges for the telecommunica- Internet access were seen as luxu- days when on vacation is not an
tions infrastructure. Access to the ries reserved for management, and issue; nevertheless, I don’t want to
Web is not an issue in larger cit- if the system was down, it was not live without it anymore.
ies, but it can be more difficult in a big issue.
smaller towns. Nevertheless, the Today, this is not the case. The Rainer Rusch is manager of Data
local telecoms are striving to im- Internet is also crucial for system Center and Microsoft Solutions
prove connectivity. Most parts of interfaces to external partners. In- for Dimension Data Namibia,
Namibia have cell phone coverage, terfaces to external systems tripled which is an important contributor
and Internet-capable cell phones over the past five years for some of to building and maintaining
and wireless service providers have our customers. Namibia’s IT infrastructure
made the Web more accessible in As an IT specialist, I realize that backbone. Dimension Data is an
remote areas. the Internet is crucial to my career, EMC partner.

According to the website Internet World Stats, only 6.9 percent of Africa’s population uses
the Internet, compared with 74 percent in North America and 51 percent in Europe. This index

leaves tremendous room for growth. In fact, between 2000 and 2009, Internet usage in
Africa grew by more than 1,300 percent. Three articles in this issue describe how the Web 39
has affected Namibia G page 38 , Angola G page 41 , and Mauritius G page 46 .
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Don’t i know you? Going Granular


“The notion of hav- “The Web is certainly changing business models. Take
ing people find you the media segment, for example. Media was, for the last
on the Web and be 80 or 90 years, about mass media and one-to-many. It
able to get a com- was about having very big, singular advertising buys, and
plete picture of who that supported the rise of giant international brands that
you are—what you’ve could afford those ad buys.
done, how you be- “Some really interesting fragmentation is going on be-
have, what your cause of the Web. People are connected in more person-
personality is—is quite amazing. Recently, I to-person ways. With each new evolution of web tech-
got 161 submissions for updating my logo. The nology, those person-to-person
person I chose had done an amazing amount connections become arguably
of research in terms of what I had posted on more granular, and we’re start-
my blog, what I had tweeted, and some of my ing to see really small hyper-
companies. She came up with a design that is local businesses take off by
just unbelievable because it really character- using that shift. Does it bring
izes what I do. The amount of information she back the small-town boutique,
extracted from what is on the Web was very the person who makes a busi-
profound. ness successful because he
“[In the past], she would have had to spend or she knows a lot about the product and shares that
hours with me, meeting face to face, trying to information? I think that would be a very naïve read. But
understand what I do and what I think, and try- it certainly shakes up the dynamics, from these giant
ing to derive a design out of that. It would have monolithic multinational brands to a little bit more of a
taken a lot of time for her and me. Here, the grassroots economy.”
designer just nailed it. I was like, ‘Wow!’”
Laura Fitton
Jeff Clavier Principal, Pistachio Consulting
Venture investor 5 Fitton is co-author of Twitter for Dummies and the index

5 Clavier is founder of SoftTech VC, an early- founder and CEO of oneforty, an app store for Twitter.
stage fund that has invested in dozens of start- Her focus is on productive business uses of emergent 40
ups, mostly related to Web 2.0 and the Internet. technologies.
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ANGOLA Is Rebuilding Connections population of 13 million has access on the political situation.
to the Internet because it is too ex- For my employer, the Internet
pensive for many. The government has been central to increasing sales
has resolved to improve Internet by 50 percent over the past three
infrastructure by 50 percent in years. It allows us to keep in touch
2010, making it more affordable. with our enterprise customers, in-
Currently, I pay $100 a month for cluding the country’s substantial oil
Internet service, which is way too and gas industry, and to avoid the
expensive. previous difficulties and delays of
By Hugo Recchimuzzi Most web pages and portals are relying on the troubled telephone
b Up until five years ago, Angola had still hosted outside the country.
little access to the World Wide The ability to download large files
system. We have also launched
a new website that improves our
Web. Our country was torn by 27 is still evolving. Currently, the maxi- communications with customers.
years of civil war that destroyed mum file that can be downloaded is In my career, no Internet means
most of our infrastructure, includ- one megabyte. lost business. I rely on it at my
ing telecommunications. But since While the government here is company, where I have worked
the peace agreement in 2002, we making progress in providing infor- since 2002.
have gradually been rebuilding, and mation over the Web to citizens, it As for my personal life, our fam-
Internet access has improved by faces a larger challenge in commu- ily has had Internet access at home
300 percent. nicating with its population: More for three years and can’t imagine
We now have five Internet ser- than 50 percent of the people in not having it. My two children, ages
vice providers—one public and four Angola are illiterate. Hopefully, the five and six, use it to learn, play
private—and WiMax is available in Internet will help improve that situ- games, and entertain them like TV.
40 percent of the country. Angola ation. It’s like oxygen. We can’t live
is also about to launch its first on- Meanwhile, the Web is connect- without it.
line university, where students can ing and informing people across index

take classes on the Internet. the country. News now reaches Hugo Recchimuzzi is a sales manager in
Still, there are issues to be re- areas that were previously isolated, Luanda for MEDTECH Technology 41
solved. Only 30 percent of the and people are able to stay current and Services, an EMC partner.
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Reflections from “The


By Steve Duplessie
In 1986, I thought I was the coolest guy in Coolest
town—I had a cellular bag phone! It had awful
service, a huge fee structure, and stretched the Guy in
limits of the term “mobile”—but it didn’t matter.
For me, it was the beginning of the “information
anywhere, anytime” era. Soon after, the World
Town”
Wide Web took that concept and exploded it to
every nook and cranny of the planet.
Just like the cell phone, the Web has had its
share of growing pains, created information
revolutions and revelations, and caused its share
of problems. Technology is an imperfect enabler

kathleen dooher
of things previously unconsidered. Who foretold
that 20 years after I got my bag phone, every-
one on the planet would be using their mobile
phones for everything but talking? They text,
they shoot video, they surf the Net. Talk? That’s old at the speed of light. There are no secrets and no lim-
school. its—which can be good, and, as we all know, bad.
Access to information is available almost anywhere,
anytime, to anyone. Is it all good? Of course not. There Competing with the Big Boys
are always problems when the world adopts a new In the business arena, the Internet enabled small busi-
way of doing things. The key is that we keep moving ness owners such as myself the capability to com-
forward. municate globally, just like the big boys. It allowed me
New technologies also highlight the flaws in our to enter markets at light speed and almost no cost. It
society, businesses, systems, and processes. Problems put me at parity with corporate giants who previously index

don’t get fixed until they are exposed, and the WWW were able to keep me out of markets because of cost
is the best thing ever created for exposing! Whether and reach. It enabled my big mouth to reach eyes and 42
social, political, human, or machine, issues are exposed ears everywhere. In the Internet era, truly the whole %
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Reflections from “The coolest guy in town” [continued]
world is a stage. est-tech gear available—it was able to sense cancer-
The Internet has revolutionized my business. Want ous tumors no bigger than just a few cells. Those
relevant data on spending trends in China or Bolivia? images took up a half-terabyte of capacity. But when I
From my office in Milford, Massachusetts, I can get needed to send that data to my doctor in Boston, the
you up-to-the-minute results. Why use six-month- files were too large to transmit between the hospitals.
old data that was questionable anyway? No need to So I was forced to take a million dollars worth of digital
any longer—the Internet changed the way primary technological brilliance and reduce it to analog films—
research can be conducted. While the old guard puts circa 1952—and then drive them to Boston.
out “data” based on 25 interviews, we can poll hun-
dreds or thousands—and can do it in less time, in Reaching Across Continents
more places, with far more granularity. We couldn’t do More recently, I saw firsthand how a young man des-
it without the Net. perately in need of a bone marrow transplant was
able, through the use of Twitter, to reach across ev-
Knowing Is Better Than Not Knowing ery continent to find a donor within 72 hours. There
In my personal life, I’ve also seen the good and the were responses from Brazil, China, Japan, and other
bad. Six years ago, I was diagnosed with Hodgkin’s countries. This simply was not feasible in the pre-Web
lymphoma. Knowing nothing of cancer, my wife and world. Unfortunately, the disease was too far ad-
I immediately went to the Web to educate ourselves. vanced, and the transplant failed, but not for the lack
The bad news is there were millions of results, and I of a donor.
only needed a few proper ones. The good news is after There is always a price to progress, intended and
manually sifting through those results for a few days, otherwise. The Web has exposed commercial and
I was able to get smart on my disease. I learned that I personal issues, enabled massive societal change, and,
had the odds with me, and I learned what the journey in the end, made a big world smaller. And that has
was going to be like for the next year. And knowing is proven to be a really good thing.
far, far better than not knowing.
The downside of web capabilities manifested itself a Steve Duplessie is the founder of and senior analyst at index

month later. I was receiving treatment both in Boston the Enterprise Strategy Group. He is recognized
and in a suburb closer to home. I had high-resolution worldwide as a leading independent authority on 43
nuclear scanning done in Framingham using the high- enterprise storage.
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society greatly, and by focusing on them, we


can glimpse where we are going—and hope-
fully control the technology rather than allow-
ing it to control us.

It’s Time for Your Close-Up


We are still at the early stages of digitiz-
ing, imaging, and monitoring the real world.
But by 2030, video scrutiny will be far more
pervasive than today, and more heavily
populated areas will be under constant video
surveillance. Being on camera virtually all the
time, and being able to access images of most
locations and activities, will not only change

Immortality,
how we feel about personal security and pri-
vacy, but will also cause us to censor how we
behave in public places.
It isn’t yet clear if we will feel less or more
Unreality, and the jen siska
secure, but the reaction to Google Earth in
Social Impact of the Europe reminds us that technology is a two-
Internet in 20 Years edged sword: Many people see the applica-
tion as a tool that helps burglars case a loca-
tion before striking. Others point out that live
By Rob Enderle feeds could, in theory, make it easier to catch
Predicting social change is a crap shoot. There are so many thieves and other criminals.
variables to consider. And, as powerful as the Internet may In the future, more people will be able to index

be, the real world that exists outside the virtual one is so far monitor what you do, and there will be a more
beyond our control that its impact is virtually unpredictable. detailed and permanent record of it, creating 44
Nonetheless, there are some clear trends that will affect profound privacy concerns. One can imagine %
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the social impact of the internet [continued]
creating a video diary of a spe- are creating tools like MIT’s Per- rob enderle is president and
cific time interval in one’s life or sona, which can quickly compile principal analyst of the Enderle
perusing a video database to see how you are viewed and spoken Group, a forward-looking
where a prospective employee, a about on the Web. Down the emerging technology advisory
suspected criminal, or a rebellious road, one can imagine a job in- firm. He is one of the most
teenager goes and what they do terview that is conducted with recognized commentators on
during the day. your virtual self—not one that you technology.
create, but one that is based on
A “Virtual You” That Could the information, accurate or not,
Live Forever that is available about you. The We’re the Same,
The concept of creating a virtual
representation of oneself has al-
Web could become a highly ac-
curate lie detector or a totalitarian Only More So
ready begun at sites, like Lifenaut, nightmare. It’s easy to imagine
that let users create a realistic your avatar testifying against you “The Internet is like alcohol
3D avatar: a “virtual you” that based on what past behavior sug- in some sense. It accentuates
you can teach to talk and behave gests you would likely do. what you would do anyway. If
like you, using online tools. In 20 you want to be a loner, you can
years, this technology may make You Ain’t Seen Nothin’ Yet be more alone. If you want to
it possible to “be in two places In 20 years, the ability to separate connect, it makes it easier to
(or more) at once.” For example, what is real from what is imagined connect.” —Esther Dyson
an avatar might handle routine will be increasingly difficult, but
e-mail, monitor news and social the difference may become irrele-
networking feeds, and even chat vant as the real and virtual worlds
with people when you’re unavail- blend—most likely to our benefit

James Duncan Davidson


able. And, of course, a virtual and our detriment. And that’s only
person could outlive the real one, the beginning of the impact of the index

perhaps offering some comfort, or Internet. The next hundred years?


affliction, to those still alive. Now that’s where the really big 45
Advancements in data mining changes will occur!
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heard of us. cent of the population has mobile


The Web has brought some phones.
amazing capabilities to our remote The government does have a
world. About 30 percent of our website for some services, which
population of 1.2 million has In- our company helped implement
ternet access, which first became five years ago. But it has not im-
available here in 1995. We mainly proved the site since it was estab-
use it for communications, e-mail, lished. The interface is not very
social networking, browsing, and user-friendly, and navigation is not
downloads. But shopping and bank- straightforward. So it’s a nightmare,
ing on the Web are still limited. and people don’t use it.

The High Cost of a Monopoly Bridging the Distance Between


Putting A single telecommunications com-
pany has a monopoly on Internet
Businesses
The Internet is crucial for my em-
Mauritius service, making it quite expensive. ployer. It lets us stay connected

on the map A business package with two-


megabyte-per-second ADSL costs
$270 a month. Some companies
with customers and vendors and
have immediate access to price
information. That’s particularly
don’t think it’s worth it. While important, since we are so far away
By Frederic Ng there are other providers emerging from everything. For instance, the
b The arrival of the World Wide
Web helped put Mauritius on the
these days to try and bring prices
down, they are limited by the high
nearest EMC office is in South Af-
rica, four hours away by plane.
map, though we still have a way to cost of using the existing telecom I can’t imagine how I would work
go to reach global recognition. We infrastructure. The most promis- if I didn’t have the Internet. Every-
are a small island nation off the ing solution, in my view, is to make thing would be so slow. It would index

coast of Madagascar that relies on services available via mobile phone. take two months to send an order
the sugar, textile, and tourist in- While a lot of people still cannot to a customer. Now we can get 46
dustries. Many people have never afford to have a PC here, 80 per- orders out in a matter of days. I still %
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mauritius [cont.] Leave the Driving to Us
“When I think about what we will be able to do on
have to track them by e-mail, how- the Web in 20 years that we can’t do today, I think
ever, since I do not have a website about things like people moving out of big cities and
to let me have continuous visibility. living where they please. In our company, one of my
I can also get career training, in- colleagues lives on a bus. He actually has a house, but he only lives
cluding EMC certifications, online in it half of the year. For the other half, he drives around to anyplace
without having to travel to South where there’s good weather or nice things to see. He has a satellite
Africa. dish on the roof and the equivalent of a broadband connection.
“If you take this to the next step, you ask, ‘Why should people pay
Bridging the Distance incredibly inflated real estate prices to live in certain small areas?
Between People Why should you pay a fortune to live in a so-called good school dis-
The Web has played a vital role trict when you could have the best teachers in the world while you’re
in my personal life as well. It has on your bus, actually, because it’s all done over the Net?’
allowed me to get back in touch “That kind of change is completely credible, but it will happen very
with friends that I have lost contact slowly. Sociological changes or even changes to the way business is
with. Just about every week, I hear done are not things that happen overnight. I think it is going to take
from another old-time friend on another 20 to 30 years to play out.”
Facebook. Some of them I haven’t
talked to for more than 10 years. Jakob Nielsen is one of the world’s foremost experts in web usability.
On this, the 20th anniversary
of the Web, it’s still a big mess
with all the interconnections and By 2013, according to eMarketer, 155
complexities, and yet it works. It’s million U.S. Internet users will con-
42.8% 51.8%
amazing.
(83 million) sume some form of user-created con- (115 million)
tent, up from 116 million in 2008. The
Frederic Ng is a sales executive number of user-generated content cre-
with Blanche, Birger Co. Ltd., ators will grow by similar proportions, index
User-Generated User-Generated
provider of information and Content Creators reaching 115 million (or 51.8 percent of Content Creators
communications technology U.S. Internet users) in 2013, up from 47
services, and an EMC partner.
2008 83 million (42.8 percent) in 2008.
2013
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TECHNOLOGY
PREdictions:
INTElligence
& brute
Technology
prediction
force
is inherently
hard. And it
is even harder
to predict
how society

Doug Knutson
will react to a
new product
or service.

By Andrew Odlyzko is truly an enthusiastic embrace, or it is no wonder that “progress by


Potential customers may sneer at a simply hype generated to stimu- mistake” is not just frequent, but
new technology, as happened a de- late an enthusiastic embrace.) The almost a rule.
cade ago with application service presence of complicated feedback
providers (ASPs). Or they may em- loops—hype can inspire creation of An Unexpected Killer App
brace it, as seems to be happening new applications, which will make Technology can surprise on the index

with today’s incarnation of ASPs, a service more attractive and per- upside as well as the downside.
cloud computing. (Of course, it is suade people to try it—makes the E-mail, which was specifically 48
still too early to tell if what we see task of prediction even harder. So excluded from the design crite- %
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Technology predictions [continued]


ria for the ARPANET, became the A fairly persistent pattern [in technology forecasting]
“killer app” of that network as well is the underestimation of the continuing increases
as its descendant, the Internet. in processing power, storage capacities, and
Who could have known at the time communication bandwidth, and overestimation of the
that the computer mouse, demon- extent to which computers can be made to reason like people.”
strated by Doug Engelbart more
than 40 years ago, would today
still be the key device for human- should ride the technology curve, which computers can be made to
computer interaction? And the taking advantage of Moore’s law reason like people.
World Wide Web, now 20 years and similar laws that provide pre- A striking example of this di-
old, spread slowly for several years, dictable progress in information chotomy is provided by J. C. R.
until the release of the Mosaic technologies, at rates that vary Licklider’s book Libraries of the
browser made it widely acces- from field to field. Future, published in 1965. Licklider
sible—and then it caught fire. But has the best claim of anybody to
even then, in the first few years, Under- and Overestimating be called the “grandfather of the
there was considerable speculation Aside from the widely accepted Internet,” as he was the first one to
that even better tools for accessing principles above, there are a few point to computers as being pri-
information over the Internet might other patterns that one can dis- marily communication devices, not
emerge. cern in the history of predictions just computing ones, and he set up
What can we conclude from the about technology. Thus, although the program that led to the cre-
long history of failed technology general technology forecasting is ation of the Arpanet. In his book,
predictions? Wide experimenta- unreliable, some predictions have he made many predictions. Some,
tion is certainly called for, as well proven correct over an extended about development of computer
as maximizing the flexibility of period of time. A fairly persistent networks, and about digital librar-
new technologies, in order to ac- pattern is the underestimation of ies becoming feasible around the
commodate demands that one did the continuing increases in pro- year 2000, are among the finest index

not foresee initially. One should cessing power, storage capacities, examples of futurology. But those
not count on serendipity but be and communication bandwidth, were based primarily on extrapola- 49
prepared for it. And, of course, we and overestimation of the extent to tions from basic technology trends. %
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Technology predictions [continued]
Many of his forecasts were wrong, algorithms. (Clever algorithms historical precedents, such hopes
in particular those based on ex- were also needed for the advances will be disappointed. Comput-
pectations that computers would in speech recognition, language ing, storage, and communications
acquire intelligence. translation, and chess.) The are all progressing rapidly, even if
A similar pattern appears in oth- popularity of the Web obtained somewhat less rapidly than they
er areas: Speech recognition has a substantial boost from the ap- did a decade ago. Hence, it is most
made great strides, primarily by pearance of AltaVista, the first reasonable to expect the incremen-
exploiting more powerful technol- popular search engine. AltaVista’s tal improvements they will provide
ogy to do massive pattern match- breakthrough, later improved on by (together with improvements in
ing, rather than by the methods Google, was to demonstrate that standard data mining, visualization,
pursued in the 1960s of trying to with sufficient computing, storage, databases, and related algorithms)
get computers to understand hu- and communications resources, will be the main contributors to the
man speech. Language translation one could do effective, automated Web’s evolution.
followed the same pattern. And crawling and indexing. But Alta-
so did chess. The best computer Vista’s managers, for what seemed Andrew Odlyzko is professor of
chess programs can handily beat to be good business reasons at the Mathematics at the University
the best human players today, but time, made the misstep of switch- of Minnesota. Before founding
not by imitating human thought ing their focus to making Alta- the Digital Technology Center
processes. (That presents us with Vista a portal, and thus facilitated at the University of Minnesota,
a mystery: Why are there no con- Google’s rise to dominance. Google he had a long career in research
tests involving pairings of people succeeds largely through use of and research management at Bell
and computers on each side?) massive resources, with direction Labs and AT&T Labs. He is widely
from clever methods, but not ones known for an early debunking
Human, Not Artificial, drawn from conventional AI. of the myth of Internet traffic
Intelligence The Web is evolving rapidly. And doubling every three or four
With the Web, too, brute force there are hopes for major break- months and for demonstrating index

has triumphed, although that throughs based on computer un- that connectivity has traditionally
brute force is directed by human derstanding of the growing volume mattered much more to society 50
intelligence in the form of clever of digitized data. Yet, if we go by than content has.
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Learning
to Be
Alone of teams and the value of col- his students to “walk in the
and laboration, which the Internet marketplace.” Drucker meant it

Analog Again
makes all the more possible. physically. Go see a customer
Teamwork and collaboration are and ask what she thinks of
required for a company to oper- your products. We now do that
ate. But there are times when I digitally. Our customers tell us
want to be alone—maybe learn what they think, whether or not
on my own from the knowledge we want it or like it—and smart
available over the Internet—and companies make it easy for
then just think. customers to form communi-
Any experienced manager ties, exchanging their views and
knows that we are alone when experiences.
adam mccauley

making hard business deci- But there is nothing like direct


sions. At the same time, we conversation with customers
cannot make good decisions to understand the subtleties
based on data collected exclu- of what they really want. In
By Jim Champy sively through digital channels. my own business, IT services,
When I see the penchant for people to When I look at the generation customers are always gratefully
be constantly connected—including of managers we are training, I acknowledging what we do and
myself—I wonder whether we will for- wonder how they will perform then asking for “more.” It can
get how to be alone. Communications if they are disconnected from take a lot of conversation to
devices are stuck in our ears, clipped their digital environment. It’s a understand what that “more” is
to our belts, carried in our hands. The critical issue, because the qual- and how to deliver it.
Internet is, of course, the great en- ity of decision-making often de-
abler of connectivity. But I must admit fines the quality of leadership. Trust Your Intuition;
to getting tired of being asked to be Sharpen Your Sensibilities index

linked, share a chat room, twitter, or Develop and Nurture Direct In my research of high-perform-
blog. Connections ing companies over many years, 51
I very much believe in the power Peter Drucker always advised I have been struck by how %
73
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analog again [continued]
many managers and executives to make decisions. Committees decisions. But in the end, you are
are intuitive decision-makers. The often make compromises, not the alone in making the most momen-
Internet provides access to vol- decision that’s best for a company tous decisions. So get comfort-
umes of data and information to or its customers. For example, able in doing that. Unplug yourself
use in support of decision mak- committees can make bad com- from time to time, and just think.
ing. But, in the end, someone has promises when considering cost-
to make a decision, and often the cutting initiatives. They defer from Jim Champy is the chairman of
answer is not in the data. Today, it making hard decisions, particular- consulting for Perot Systems, a
would be easy to decide that sales ly if it requires a company to stop business unit of Dell. His most
are off because of broad market doing something. Committees can recent book is INSPIRE!, Why
conditions, but could sales also be advise; managers and executives Customers Come Back.
off because of the quality of your must make the hard decisions.
product or because a competitor In the end, of course, a man-
is doing a better job than you? ager must be sure that people are
Great managers have a strong
intuitive sense about their mar-
aligned behind a decision. That is
one of the great benefits of col-
Socks.com
kets and customers, and they laborative efforts. You can find “When I took
develop that sense by sharpening games and exercises over the office, only
their sensibilities. They balance Internet to improve your people- high-energy
walking inside and outside their alignment skills, but there is physicists
companies to learn what’s going nothing like a steely argument to had ever
on. understand the passion that can heard of what
be involved, even over a business is called the
Seek Alignment, Not issue. World Wide
Compromise You can see that I am of two Web. ... Now even my cat has
I have already acknowledged that minds: You cannot make good his own page.” index

teamwork and collaboration are decisions by just being alone. Col- —Bill Clinton, announcing the
important, but I must admit that laboration, listening, and learning Next Generation Internet Ini- 52
I have never trusted committees all contribute to good business tiative, 1996
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intimacy, web style


“With the Web, we’ve created
these gradations of intimacy
Web Workout
that both lubricate transac- Jeremiah Owyang
tions and create the grounds for Altimeter Group
transactions that are, frankly, a 5 Described as a “social media superstar,”
little bit scary. I do some venture Owyang is a web strategist whose expertise
investing, so I see a continu- includes building personal brands and helping
ous flow of business plans from companies connect with customers.
people around the world whom
I actually think I know. You have “In 20 years, the Web will fade into the back-
what we call ‘air friends,’ these ground. It won’t look like anything. People will
people I see all the time on Twit- just connect with other people and focus on
ter, or they e-mail me now and then. So if I see them the relationships. You won’t visit websites the
at a conference, I feel like I know them really well even way you do now. The content will come to you
though we’ve never actually inhabited the same physical in real time and assemble in front of you, on the
state. fly, based on your needs. And it will anticipate
“So, I have all these attenuated relationships. I won’t your needs. URLs will fade away. People won’t
say it’s a false intimacy, but it’s an attenuated intima- use them at all. That’s a very antiquated way of
cy.  And that’s hugely productive as long as you remem- finding things; it’s machine language actually.
ber that it is a different sort of intimacy than the one “The system will look at your previous behav-
where we can get physical cues from people and say, iors and your location and draw context from
‘You seem trustworthy.  I’ll write you a check for this it. We’re already seeing that happen. Whether
much money because I feel comfortable with the way you realize it or not, you’re training your e-mail
you support yourself.’” inbox to show certain things and not show
certain things. Facebook is learning to show
Paul Kedrosky you information from people who are relevant
Venture investor and entrepreneur to you. Following and un-following people on index

5 Kedrosky is an analyst for CNBC, contributes regular- Twitter is another example.


ly to The Wall Street Journal, and is frequently quoted “We’re training the system to serve up the 53
in major media outlets. information that we like.”
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“The Web Is Gonna Be Big”


When the Web began, I was working at Digital
Equipment Corp., which became a pioneer in
turning this new capability into something busi-
nesses could use. From the outset, it was clear to
me that, with the capabilities it offered to com-
municate around the world effectively and inex-
pensively, the Web was going to have a pretty
radical impact on the way we used computers
and information. I remember giving a presenta-
tion on e-commerce security in the early days of
the Web. Someone in the class asked, “Do you
really think this is going to grow into something
big?” He was drinking a bottle of water at the
time. I said, “If I told you a year ago you’d be pay-

From Novelty to ing a dollar for a bottle of water, would you have
believed me?”

Utility eBay’s Chief Information


Security Officer Reflects on
Two decades later, the Web has become a
utility that people expect to be there. It’s very
dramatic how much people are used to commu-
the Web nicating via their BlackBerries and iPhones and
keeping track of all the things that are going on
around the world with a hand-held device. The
By Dave Cullinane trick is keeping it working the way they expect it
By connecting people around the world, allowing them to without imposing a whole set of requirements.
to share more and more information, the Web has Outside the IT industry, companies didn’t nec- index

created a strong need for sophisticated, proven security essarily embrace the Web right away. When I ran
that could keep information safe in a rapidly changing the security program for U.S. operations of Sun 54
environment. Life of Canada, we held long discussions about %
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from novelty to utility [continued]


whether to allow employees to Over the past 20 years, the World Wide Web has not only
access the Web at work. The shaped the success of the companies I’ve worked for, but
concern was that they would frit- the career I work in. It was the development and growth
ter away their time browsing the of the Internet that turned IT security into a profession.”
Web. We decided to let them, but
a lot of companies didn’t.
rity are essential to both buyers As with most people, the im-
Two Hours and a Quarter and sellers. pact of the Web on my life has
of a Million Calls For IT management, the Web been huge. I Skype with my
The Web brought important has caused the pendulum to grandchildren all the time, so we
changes to banking. Online swing back to a more central- can see each other even though
banking became a strength of ized infrastructure. Over my long I’m in California and they’re in
Washington Mutual, Inc., where career, we started out with main- Massachusetts. I also find being
I served as chief information frames, then terminals accessing able to hold business meetings
security officer before joining mainframes, and then PCs. Now, with people face-to-face over the
eBay three years ago. The bank it’s moving back the other way, Web is a major innovation with
became aware of how vital on- where companies are actually tremendous potential.
line banking was when it was hit using VMware to basically pro- One of the biggest challenges I
with a 24-hour system outage in vide a terminal server version on see ahead is safeguarding infor-
2003. I had been urging them to your PC, so they can limit what mation in the cloud computing
do a disaster and recovery plan. the employees can do and are environment. But I also think the
Within two hours of the sys- exposed to. Security needs are cloud offers potential for new and
tem outage, their help desk got much more complex because we innovative security tools.
250,000 phone calls from people are connecting to systems all over
upset that they couldn’t bank the world—some of which we Dave Cullinane is chief information
online. own, some of which others run security officer at eBay index

eBay, of course, couldn’t ex- for us, and some of which are run Marketplaces and a member
ist without the Web—or without by companies we know nothing of RSA’s Security for Business 55
effective security. Trust and secu- about. Innovation Council.
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Venezuela
Shares Its Story ments around the world.
This is a young company,
and since its beginning
in 2002, the strategy has
been to focus on using
the Internet to operate
the business and reach
every inch of the Venezu-
elan territory; this could
only be possible because
By Fran Grillet longest river in South America, the of the Internet. Our main office is
b Since the World Wide Web arrived Orinoco. It also has the longest
in Venezuela in the mid-1990s, it coastline to the Caribbean Sea.
located in Caracas, but we need to
keep day-to-day contact with all
has been a positive force for impor- Currently, only about 28 percent our vendors who are located in cit-
tant economic and social develop- of Venezuela’s 26 million people ies all over Venezuela. The Internet
ment here. The Web has opened have access to the Internet. How- is the key channel that lets com-
new doors for our country, letting ever, that number is continuing to munication flow in real time, easily,
us share with the world that we rise at a strong pace. In fact, be- and fast.
are a major producer of oil and are tween 2000 and 2009, the number The invention of the Web has
home to some of the world’s most of Internet users countrywide has certainly made my personal life and
beautiful people. grown by 695 percent. As more career easier. It has helped me to
It has also helped us highlight the citizens connect to the Web, the understand just how vital informa-
many attractions Venezuela has government is now working to pro- tion is to our lives and businesses
to offer travelers, from its tropical vide services over the Internet. and how important it is to have the
beaches and little-explored jungles, For my company, Toyota Services information that I need with just a
to its majestic mountains and idyl- Venezuela, the Web is a vital tool click. index

lic colonial towns. Venezuela is for communicating with custom-


home to the world’s highest wa- ers and vendors. It also lets us stay Fran Grillet is IT manager for Toyota 56
terfall, Angel Falls, and the second informed about industry develop- Services Venezuela.
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“It’s been my policy to view the Internet Digital Double


not as an ‘information highway,’
but as an electronic asylum filled with Vision
babbling loonies.” —Mike Royko “Forget everybody being fa-
mous for 15 minutes—on the
Internet, anybody can become
famous in 15 seconds. But in
waiting around for our close-up,
we may find ourselves stuck
with digital double vision, with
watching ourselves live life in-
stead of just living it.”
—Jason Fry

OLDEST NEW TESTAMENT


Scholars, conservators, and curators are collaborating via the Web to
preserve and make accessible the Codex Sinaiticus, one of the most
important books in history. Handwritten over 1,600 years ago, the index

manuscript contains the Christian Bible in Greek, including the oldest


complete New Testament. 57

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Technologies
of

A
Information:
By Gil Press
This special issue of ON Magazine celebrates 20

shared
years of the Web and centuries of overcoming barri-
ers to sharing information. Throughout the remark-
able evolution in the way mankind has created and

future?
used information, the urge to share—to collect,
preserve, disseminate—has driven the invention and
proliferation of numerous technologies for record-
ing, duplicating, storing, distributing, and accessing
information.
But time and again, these technologies have
created islands of information rather than the
desired collective pool, always approaching but
never achieving the goal of total recall of the most
relevant information to the question of the moment.

Bridging the Islands That Span the Enterprise


Nowhere has this conundrum been more pro-
nounced than in the management of IT by enter-
prises. First the mainframe and the minicomputer,
followed by the PC, all developed and sold by verti-
cally integrated IT vendors, have created isolated
islands of computing and storage resources, walled
by incompatible hardware, operating systems, and
applications.
Two connectivity breakthroughs, the Internet and
adam mccauley

index

Ethernet, sought to bridge these islands. But initially,


only Ethernet made an impact on enterprise IT. In 58
the 1980s, it became clear to business executives %
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A Shared Future? [continued]
(if not to economists) that connecting PCs created tion. To overcome these structural islands of infor-
opportunities to change the way work was done by mation, they advocated focusing on enterprise-wide
workgroups, leading to gains in workers’ productivity. processes.
Bob Metcalfe’s sales pitch about how increasing This advice was great, but the implementations
the number of connected PCs increased the value that were promoted and executed by IT vendors
of the network masked the true impact of the local created new islands of applications. This fragmenta-
area network (LAN). It was the value of information tion was reinforced by IT managers, who, eager to
that increased the more you connected PCs and the satisfy the rapidly growing number of new internal
people working with them. With the right discipline clients, allocated ever-cheaper computing and stor-
and tools, you could start growing your organiza- age resources to each application, thus building new
tional memory, retain expertise when people left or barriers to retaining and sharing information across
switched jobs, and effectively share pertinent in- the enterprise. IT managers were responsible in the
formation across the enterprise. In short, you could 1990s for remarkable advances in the use of IT to
finally start harnessing information technology to automate and augment economic transactions of all
capitalize on what Andrew Carnegie already knew kinds. But as far as information was concerned, the
to be “the only irreplaceable capital an organization 1990s were another lost decade for enterprise IT.
possesses … the knowledge and ability of its people.”
“A Universal Machine for Sharing Information”
Organizational Structure: Outside the enterprise, however, something very
The Next Barrier to Fall exciting was happening in the early 1990s. The great
Between 1989 and 1993, the percentage of U.S. wide-area connectivity breakthrough, the Internet,
computers on LANs rose from less than 10 to more finally came to life and achieved a critical mass with
than 60. But the promise was not fulfilled. Around millions of individual users around the world. All
the same time, a number of consultants (including because of Tim Berners-Lee’s obsession with creating
ON columnist Jim Champy) pointed to the structure an “information space,” giving information “a place
of the corporation—its division into business units, to persist,” and developing “a universal machine for index

functions, and departments, a structure that hasn’t sharing information.”


changed since the Andrew Carnegie days—as the key Berners-Lee also had an undaunted conviction 59
barrier to adequately managing enterprise informa- that his invention could be used not only by CERN to %
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A Shared Future? [continued]
retain and share internally its organizational memory, The glass-half-empty answer is no. The glass-
but also by the entire world to preserve, share, and half-full answer is that we are poised to experience
mine … just about everything. a remarkable progress in enterprise IT in the decade
The Web, the linking of information (and of peo- ahead. Virtualization has already started to topple
ple), is what made the Net, the linking of incompat- the tyranny of applications. Marry this trend to the
ible computers, a household word. philosophy of the Web—that the container is less
important than the information it contains—and add
Inevitably Perhaps, New Islands Arise advanced tools for mining information, and what you
Not surprisingly, the Web is subject to the same get is the much-talked-about cloud computing. A lot
forces of innovation that have given rise to succeed- of attention is paid today to consumer-driven cloud
ing generations of technology islands. To borrow ON computing simply because consumer information is
editor Chris Kane’s apt phrase, the beautiful minds where the Web has largely made its impact. But the
that create innovative new technologies are not im- biggest promise lies in the transformation of enter-
mune to the pursuit of glory and, occasionally, prof- prise IT into internal or private clouds. Enterprise
it—impulses that tend to impede progress toward the IT may finally fully deliver, just like the Web, on the
linking of all information and the vision of total recall promise of linked and shared information.
and relevance. As Tim Berners-Lee (who resisted
the temptation to create yet another island with the Looking Backward From the Year 2020
Web) points out in this issue, we now face, for exam- No more islands of information in the enterprise?
ple, new islands in the form of social media sites that Writing 20 years ago about “Enterprise Integration,”
are not “compatible” with others. the buzzword du jour, I stated its essence (not very
However imperfect the Web is, does enterprise IT originally) as “getting the right information to the
today come even close to providing us information at right person at the right time.” In the enterprise, it’s
your fingertips like the Web does? Does it give us the still a reality-challenged proposition. But at the end
flexibility and ease of use of setting up a new infor- of this new decade, we may succeed in bringing the
mation hub or linking our information to others’ or Web concept of “information space” inside the en- index

finding relevant information without knowing exactly terprise and replace “IT” with a cloud that retains,
what we are looking for—the way we are now accus- shares, and mines the only irreplaceable capital of 60
tomed to with the Web? the organization. p
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WEB 1728 Efraim Chambers,


a London globe-maker, 1937 H.G. Wells: “The whole

TIME
publishes the Cyclopaedia, human memory can be, and
or, An Universal Dictionary probably in short time will

LINE
of Arts and Sciences. It is the be, made accessible to every
first encyclopedia to include a individual.”
system of cross-references.

july 1945 Vannevar Bush publishes “As not work that way. It operates by
We May Think,” in which he envisions the association. With one item in its grasp, it
“Memex,” a memory extension device snaps instantly to the next that is
serving as a large repository of data that suggested by the association of thoughts, in
could be instantly retrieved through accordance with some intricate web of
associative links: “The human mind does trails carried by the cells of the brain.”

FEB. 1951 Mary Lee Berners-Lee, 1957 In the movie Desk Set, when a “methods engi-
“the first commercial computer pro- neer” (Spencer Tracy) installs the fictional computer
grammer,” sets up the Ferranti Mark EMERAC, the head librarian (Katharine Hepburn)
I, the world’s first commercially tells her anxious colleagues in the research depart-
available general-purpose computer, ment: “They can’t build a machine to do our job; there
at Manchester University. are too many cross-references in this place.”

1960 J.C.R. Licklider: “It seems reasonable 1965 Ted Nelson coins the terms 1967 Andy van Dam and Ted
hypertext and hypermedia.
to envision, for a time 10 or 15 years hence, Nelson develop the Hypertext
a ‘thinking center’ that will incorporate the Editing System (HES); it was index
functions of present-day libraries together used by NASA to produce
with anticipated advances in information documentation for the Apollo 61
storage and retrieval.” space program.
%
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WEB
P
1967 “The great digital machines of today have had their existing proliferation be-
cause they could vitally aid business, because they could increase profits. The librar-

TIME ies still operate by horse-and-buggy methods, for there is no profit in libraries. … The
public does not understand that the welfare of their children depends far more upon

LINE effective libraries than it does on the collecting of a bucket of talcum powder from
the moon. So it will not be done soon. But eventually it will.” —Vannevar Bush

December 9, 1968 Doug Engelbart demonstrates 1971 Michael Hart launches


oN Line System, a working prototype of the first Project Gutenberg with the
fully functional, multi-user hypertext system; users aim of making copyright-free
of NLS could share and annotate documents and works electronically available.
use hyperlinks to jump from place to place within a The first text is the U.S. Decla-
document or between documents. ration of Independence.

1978 The Aspen Movie Map, 1980 Tim Berners-Lee writes ENQUIRE, a
one of the first hypermedia program documenting links between people,
systems, developed by MIT’s computers, and projects at CERN: “ENQUIRE
Andrew Lippman and others, is a method of documenting a system. It con-
provides a virtual tour of the centrates on the way the system is composed
city of Aspen, Colorado. of parts, and how these parts are interrelated.”

1985 Whole Earth ‘Lectronic Link (The WELL) is 1987 First hypertext conference, Chapel Hill,
established. The WELL presented its first users with North Carolina. Among the challenges Andy
the disclaimer “You Own Your Own Words.” YOYOW van Dam highlights in his keynote address index
strived to achieve the goal of attracting interesting peo- are a lack of standards and scalability and the
ple into online conversations with each other, while giv- need for better navigation tools and new ways 62
ing them responsibility for their own words and ideas. to design and display information.
%
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WEB 1987 Apple releas-


es Hypercard, a hy-
March 1989 Tim
Berners-Lee writes

TIME pertext application


distributed with
“Information Man-
agement: A Proposal,”

LINE Apple Macintosh


computers.
and circulates it at
CERN.

November 1989 “The real questions we have media features into the standard desktop
to ask ourselves today are, ‘How do we build environment. ... The infrastructure has to be
the infrastructure for hypertext?’ ‘Where is integrated into the standard computing envi-
this information environment going to come ronments and standard networks of today and
from?’ ... My contention is that if hypermedia tomorrow.” —Norman Meyrowitz, keynote
is to catch on … we have to integrate hyper- address at the Hypertext ’89 conference

October 1990 Tim Ber- November 1990 March 1991 Tim


ners-Lee begins writing First web server Berners-Lee releases
code for a client program, nxoc01.cern.ch the World Wide Web
a browser/editor he calls (later renamed program to users of
World Wide Web, on his info.cern.ch) NeXT computers
new NeXT computer. launched. at CERN.

August 1991 Tim Berners-Lee publishes the code for the February 1993 The Nation-
al Center for Supercomputing
World Wide Web on the Internet: “From then on, interested
Applications (NCSA) at the
people on the Internet provided the feedback, stimulation,
University of Illinois at Urba- index
ideas, source-code contributions, and moral support. ... The
na-Champaign makes the first
people of the Internet built the Web, in true grassroots 63
version of the Mosaic browser
fashion.” —Tim Berners-Lee
available over the Web. %
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WEB December 1993 “Think


of [Mosaic] as a map to
December 14, 1994
The Advisory
December 15,
1994 Netscape
TIME the buried treasures of
the Information Age.”
Committee of the
World Wide Web
releases the com-
mercial version of

LINE —John Markoff in The


New York Times
Consortium holds its
first meeting.
its browser,
Navigator 1.0.

1996 Brewster Kahle establishes the Internet Archive


to preserve and provide access to nearly every site on the
Internet, later evolving to become a comprehensive digital
library. Kahle tells Newsweek at the time: “The Web is the
people’s medium. It is the publisher who won’t turn you down.
We have five million to 15 million people’s individual voices.”

26,000,000 1998 The first Google index has 26 million web pages.
1,000,000,000 2000 Google’s index of the Web reaches the one-billion mark.
1,000,000,000,000 July 2008 Google’s index of the Web consists of one-trillion unique URLs.

November 15, 2009 Tim Berners-Lee announces that the World Wide Web
Foundation is open for business. It focuses on advancing the Web as a medium
that empowers people to make positive social and economic change. The Web index
Foundation’s first two projects will help people to better leverage the Web to
support agriculture in near-desert environments in Africa and empower youth 64
in inner-city centers by teaching them how to create web content.
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special issue Number 4, 2009

Editor in Chief & Publisher


gil press Q&A: Bob Metcalfe
http://onlifeininformation.com The past and
future of the Web,
Editor networking,
christine kane
and energy
life in information
Managing Editor
jennifer bees IN THIS ISSUE
l Chris Brogan
John Seely Brown
Design Director l
l Jim Champy
RONN CAMPISI l Jeff Clavier
Tim Berners- l Dave Cullinane
Lee on his Steve Duplessie
Marketing Manager world-changing
l
l Rob Enderle
Rita Gildea-Bryant invention l Laura Fitton
GildeaBryant_rita@emc.com l Seth Godin
l Paul Graham
l Guy Kawasaki
Contributing Writers l Paul Kedrosky
Micky Baca l Loic Le Meur

20
l Dany Levy
jim champy l Sanjay Mirchandani

The Web at
tim devaney l Craig Newmark
l Jeff Nick
christine kane l Jakob Nielsen
monya keane l Andrew Odlyzko
l Tim O’Reilly
jason m. rubin l Jeremiah Owyang
tom stein l Howard Rheingold
l Steve Rubel
; l Paul Saffo

ON, winner of eight l


l
Dave Sifry
David Vellante
publishing excellence l Jimmy Wales
awards in 2009.

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