Thursday, 9 August 2007

What web 2.0 really is

A couple of days ago a colleague and I talked about what services we use on the internet. As our conversation evolved I once again remembered how I first looked at what we today denote Web 2.0.

As a system developer I tend to see everything from a technical point of view and of course I used the same perspective as the Web 2.0 accelerated a couple of years ago.

I remember asking myself the question:

How can a "simple" asynchronous call be hyped that much?

The fact that data could be fetched asynchronously was already easy to implement using iframes.
I had already done that on a project where we implemented a browser based settop-box client, so how could a simple XMLHttpRequest object start such a revolution?
(In fact the JSF component library ADF Faces still uses frames instead of the XHR object).

As time went by I found out that web 2.0 wasn't a technology, but much more a social thing, that to some extend benefits from the fact that the asynchronous technology got the well known AJAX name and a standard XHR object was implemented in the mainstream browsers.

Linked in, Facebook, Jaiku, Flickr etc. is the kind of services that really draws the web 2.0 picture and not some low level implementation as I once was nearly fooled to believe.

Now we - as end-users - only have to select what services we like to use as they seems to pop-up faster than we can fill in the registration forms.


Tech Per said...

Good post!

You might want to start reading up on Web 3.0 already now then :-)

Jacob von Eyben said...

Oh, I already know what Web 3.0 is.
It's just some technical tweaking of the Ajax communication.
(Some people never learn)