Monday, April 30, 2007

Cutter Summit 2007: Web 2.0 panel

A by-the-bullets summary of the Cutter Summit 2007 Web 2.0 panel.

Stowe BoydSylvia MarinoJP RangaswamiAndrew McAfeeEd Yourdon
/MessageSylvia MarinoConfused of CalcuttaThe Impact of Information Technology (IT) on Businesses and their LeadersThe Yourdon Report

  • Something interesting to follow: The impact of blogs on politics.
  • Is this the de-SAP-ification of the enterprise?
    • Andrew: No. Sees a small minority of organizations implementing these things and a huge portion of the organization that's hostile to it.
    • Stowe: Draws parallel to companies being blindsided by the Internet.
  • Ways of keeping up:
    • Techmeme
    • Andrew: "Trying to determine what is going on in the world by reading newspapers is like trying to tell the time by watching the second hand of a clock." ~Ben Hech
  • What about companies' fears of openness?
    • A little role-playing as illustration:
      • I don't want my customers telling one another about my product's flaws.
      • I don't want my employees telling people what it's like to work here.
      • I want control.
    • Answers:
      • Sylvia: Heads already in the sand. Consumers are already talking about the flaws in your product. And employees are already talking in the hallways.
      • JP: The last thing you want to do when you have fear is to drive the discussion underground.
      • Ed: Cluetrain Manifesto. Also notes that Cluetrain Manifesto coauthor David Weinberger has just today released a new book: "Everything is Miscellaneous".
      • Stowe: Converstaion is going on already. You don't control your brand any more.
      • Andrew: Agree with others regarding the Internet. But on the Intranet, you have arbitrarily precise control. JP's approach is enlightened, but the last thing that many companies want is to provide a forum for their employees' complaints.
  • How would you Web-2.0-ize Cutter's web site?
    • JP: First thing, release the content. Remember the Cluetrain: "Markets are conversations." Stop calling it content. Make it accessible to all. Then allow ratings and recommendations.
    • Andrew: Baby steps. Slap a Google search on the site. Make the site as useful as possible
  • The kind of arguments put forward today against Web 2.0 are like the arguments that were put forward against email, the Internet, instant messaging, the Blackberry, the iPod.
  • Andrew tells a great story about JP and Eliot Spitzer, which I should really write up instead of just telling you how great it was.
  • Will our systems be connected?
    • Andrew: No, no, no, no. Technologists have been telling us for years that our systems would be connect by OO, web services, SOA, and now the semantic web. Computers are like old testament gods: all rules and no mercy. Quotes Norbert Wiener (American mathemetician, 1894-1964): "The world of the future will be an ever more demanding struggle against the limits of our intelligence, not a comfortable hammock in which we can lie down to be waited upon by our robot slaves."
    • Ed: Lots of experiments taking place in the Web 2.0 world. Only a few will survive. One of the best things about Web 2.0 is the APIs made available by companies like Google for mashups. Speaking of mashups: Yahoo! Pipes.
    • JP: Paying someone to move data that belongs to me is something that's in the past.
    • Andrew: Standard is the only one-word oxymoron in the English language.

Web 2.0 sites that the panel mentioned

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