Monthly Archives: April 2013

What Web 2.0 and Social Media Are Teaching Us About Responsiveness

Without question, one of the most important economic developments of the last 10 to 15 years is in the internet. The communication and business opportunities the internet affords us were unimaginable just 25 years ago. The internet started small but has grown immensely thanks to technology and different philosophical approaches to the web.

The Web 2.0 reinvigorated the appeal of the internet and has been sustaining its current design for years. Social media has become both a commercial success and a highly effective communication platform, likely the most efficient and responsive the world has ever seen.

Over on the O’Reilly Radar, Joshua-Michéle Ross has written an interesting piece focusing on the importance of the lessons learned and the patterns developed out of the implementation of web 2.0 ideas.

He believes that a few design patterns will remain important and dominant on the internet. He lists four, related to responsiveness, communities, reputation, and sociality and how they beat out other bases for design.

In 2013 we’ve already seen plenty of examples of these design guidelines at use. The speed at which brands, companies, and individuals managed to communicate and reach out to fans and customers during popular events like the Super Bowl and the Presidential debates was unheard of in the past. Only with platforms like Twitter and Facebook are these capabilities available.

Timeliness has become one of the primary guiding factors in marketing online and has proved highly effective. When companies like Oreo and Audi took advantage of the Super Bowl blackout on Twitter, they received a great deal of viral and rapid recognition for their clever and timely tweets.

Joshua sees the focus on responsiveness and timeliness as vital to the future of the internet, and he’s certainly correct. The more technology spreads and the faster it works, the more people will demand and enjoy timely information in their lives.

Twitter Takes Web 2.0 to Music

When web 2.0 concepts took over the internet, some of the biggest and most popular websites on the net were just getting started. The predictions about how influential they would be certainly came true. Twitter is one of those websites and they have been constantly improving their services.

Twitter has now become the source for the timeliest information about disasters, news, crises, events, sports, and any other topic someone would want information about. It can be used in emergency relief for communication and organization. Individuals can personally reach thousands or even millions of followers in an instant.

Twitter has always been about connecting people, and as it continues to grow in users, what the service can offer continues to grow as well. Very recently rumors of Twitter combining its power with music started to grow on the internet. They were true.

On April 18th, Twitter unveiled #music to the world. After acquiring We Are Hunted, a music aggregator which scours the web to find whatever music is currently the most popular, many on the internet knew that something big was coming from Twitter concerning the realm of music.

Now people will be able to utilize one of the most powerful and important web 2.0 and social platforms online, Twitter, to find, discover, and listen to music all over the world. There’s no telling how far #music will go in terms of helping artists get discovered and helping individuals find the music they love.

Twitter’s work with #music carries on the tradition of web 2.0 philosophies, even though they are over 10 years old at this point. Despite being over 10 years old, the concepts and ideas behind the web 2.0 movement are still very influential in bringing people together on the web. With #music, Twitter can get a read on the pulse of the web and show exactly what users are listening to, sharing, and enjoying at any moment in time.

This is definitely an interesting time to be a music lover. Hopefully we’ll see more popular social media sites start implementing similar ideas in music and other subjects people care greatly about.

Quotes of Hope from the Boston Marathon

On April 15th, the city of Boston in Massachusetts was celebrating Patriot’s Day, and the world renowned Boston Marathon. The marathon attracts thousands of runners from all over the world and is a very festive occasion in the city and the region.

Unfortunately, near when many runners would be finishing the race, two bombs went off in the afternoon, injuring hundreds and even killing some. It’s still unknown who committed these cowardly acts, but eventually we will know more. Support and assistance to the victims has been pouring in and the city of Boston is doing everything it can given the circumstances.

We thought we would provide some quotes gathered on the web that have been said around the web and the country about the Boston Marathon attack.

President Obama in a speech a few hours after the explosions: ” Boston is a tough and resilient town. So are its people. I am supremely confident that Bostonians will pull together, take care of each other and move forward – as one proud city.”

A Twitter user named OlivetoRun on the bond runners share: “Running is a sport that unites us. All backgrounds and ability levels. This event is trying to break us but we are strong. We are runners.”

Howard Fineman, who works for The Huffington Post, wrote: “Today, rescuers were running toward the wounded on Boylston Street in acts of true heroism – running toward the sound of the screams. In the end, the terrorists will fail because Bostonians did not turn from their fellow men – they turned toward them. And that is the real music of mankind.”

Lastly, one blogger wrote: “What every act of terror fails to understand is that Hope rises from the ashes.”

As we learn more about the attacks that happened in Boston, the confusion will settle. Until then we have to remain hopeful and supportive of the victims and everyone who has been affected.

Austin the Next City to Get Google Fiber

In what might be surprising information to some people in the US, Americans are using drastically slower internet than much of the rest of the developed world. This not only has repercussions for simple issues like ease of use for consumers, but it also slows the US down economically. Fast connections help businesses and people work faster and it enables them to take advantage of the web’s ability to connect us with the world much more efficiently.

One company set out last year to bring the US to the forefront of fast internet: Google. Not only has Google been a large proponent and supporter of ushering in the web 2.0 movement, they are now trying to usher in a new era of internet speed.

In Kansas City, Google unveiled Google Fiber to provide 1 gigabit internet and television to residents. This is around 100 times faster than anything else on the market. Kansas City has had the service for months and it attracted a variety of internet startups and businesses to take advantage of it.

Google has now decided to bring Fiber to Austin, Texas. Austin is one of the emerging tech centers in the US outside of California. The city has been attracting entrepreneurs and young people for years and has been weathering the economic downturn very well. With Google Fiber, it will be in an even better position to be a part of the web’s upgrade.

As Americans slowly gain access to ultra-fast internet, the capabilities that we will have to utilize the communication power of the internet will only increase. HD teleconferences are just one possibility that people can look forward to. Additionally, the speed means that businesses and individuals will be able to transfer large amounts of data incredibly quickly, making remote work even more productive and possible.

We’ll also be able to stay better connected to people in old and new ways. User-generated content will be easier to upload and share with others, thus continuing and improving what the web 2.0 movement set in motion.

White Space Internet to Bring Web 2.0 to the World?

Web 2.0 technology and concepts have brought the world closer together. However, the connection and benefits from the internet haven’t been felt equally around the planet. There are millions of people still without access to the internet. Many of these people are in developing nations that do not have the infrastructure to support high-speed internet. But that is all changing with the development of white space connections.

White space technology could be the tech that brings all of the benefits of a connected world to the developing and underdeveloped nations of the world. Recently in Kenya, Microsoft and the Kenyan government have created a white space network powered by the sun! The system uses very little energy in regions where many people do not have access to electricity.

The solar powered system is the answer to electricity woes in Kenya and elsewhere in the developing world. The solar panels provide enough energy to charge back-up batteries so that the electronics and the white space network can be used during off-hours. But what exactly is white space?

White space is a spectrum in TV channels that has been relatively unused, usually in the 600MHz range. The signals can pass through obstacles and walls easily. This is important because of the lack of infrastructure in many developing countries, which requires effective long-range networks for the internet to work. Surprisingly, the range of these networks can reach upwards of 10 kilometers from one station. The speed is great too, 16mbps, powerful enough to run Skype calls or other bandwidth heavy processes.

This is great news for the developing world, and hopefully more countries will jump on the white space bandwagon. Who knows, maybe we’ll be seeing a vastly different population on social media and other user-generated pages. Their contribution to the internet is long overdue and it will most certainly be welcomed by online denizens!