Tuesday, 26 September 2023 IMS HomepageHome

Web 2.0

Web 2.0 is not a technology: rather it is a collective brand name for a set of developments that are changing the way we use the web, and the way we design and use computer applications.

Early web sites provided users with the opportunity to view content which had been prepared by the site's authors. Web 2.0 provides opportunities for users also to participate in the creation of the content and interact with the site and other users on it.

The range and extent of applications that support such interaction is growing rapidly. This has caused the web to support what is generally now known as ‘social networking’ – creating dynamic, interactive, mutually-supportive web-based communities.

Obvious examples are MySpace, Flickr and Delicious. If you don’t know what these sites are, you’re probably over 35. All of them provide some basic service, but their distinguishing feature is the community interaction that drives constant traffic to these sites.

These sites depend on technology advances, mainly due to the development of Ajax (Asynchronus Javascript and XML) which permits more dynamic and more interactive web pages to be created.

So, what has this to do with productivity?

Well, the phenomenon that is Web 2.0 will see:

  • new forms of high quality, feature-rich applications hosted by third parties.  No longer will many companies have their own mainframes, minis and servers. They will 'rent' their applications, using simple browser-based client machines to access and use these applications. Less development time, less deployment time, less maintenance time.
  • new forms of information exchange, interaction and collaboration using tools developed from the social networking tools currently being used (wikis, blogs, RSS, etc)
  • firms monitoring and engaging with external blogs and wikis as part of their intelligence gathering.

Firms that realise this early may have a competitive edge. They might also have engaged, interacting staff and customers.

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