Web 2.0 (Have You Seen it?)

I will be one of two ‘facilitators’ teaching a short course on Web 2.0 in HUMlab on Friday 24th March between 13.00 and 16:00. Because of this I have been pursuing, researching, testing and tasting anything that might qualify as “Web 2.0” over the last month or so. It has been an interesting experience.
Web 2.0 is not easy to define but rather it has ‘qualities’ that are changing as the technological possibilities change. It could be summarized as the “read write” web where content is no longer as static as it has generally been (although very little on the web since its inception has been static). One thing about Web 2.0 is its ability to manifest strong opinions, from it being a communist plot to it being banned in schools and being a confusing condition developed by “zealots”.
I have been using some of the materials that are often assigned Web 2.0 classification for a while now. flickr is nifty. I love the Freesound project and have made extensive use of it in some sound projects. I am addicted to del.icio.us (I read somewhere recently about the psycho-sexual aspects of collecting, most often practice by pre-pubescent boys and older men as a token of virility…I have almost 3000 links!!!!). But something that has had me hung up for the last few days is Google Video…it is pretty cool. I have found videos featuring HUMlab friends Bruce Damer and Galen Brandt as well as Bonnie Devarco (well Bonnie produced this one). As a measure of what may be representative of the culture behind Web 2.0, I also found 145 videos from the visual extravaganza that is Burning Man Festival.
Other videopod sites can be found here…on my del.icio.us link of course….

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8 Responses to Web 2.0 (Have You Seen it?)

  1. Patrik says:

    I recommended your course to a group of “information workers” visiting the lab yesterday. There is something to Web 2.0, of course, and the qualities or tendencies associated with it not being crystal clear makes it interesting. I agree with Bryan Alexander and others about the importance of micro-content (and being able to address small bits) for instance.

  2. What a great course! Good luck, Jim. I wish I could be there.

    Will you be looking at Web 2.0 storytelling at all?

    PS: I’m another Freesound fanatic. And I’m not at all surprised that you are, all. :)

  3. Jim says:

    Yes Patrik, it is an exciting development and I hope to write more here on the dimensions of Web 2.0. I was being a bit flipant in this post based on the three divergent links in the first paragraph (the connection to Karl Marx still astounds me). I have been watching Bryan’s devlopment of Web 2.0 narrative with great interest. One of the metaphors I saw recently regarding Web 2.0 is as a rainforest:
    “Web 2.0. Essentially, the Web is shifting from an international library of interlinked pages to an information ecosystem, where data circulate like nutrients in a rain forest” Steven Johnson DISCOVER Vol. 26 No. 10 | October 2005

    Sounds nice (and very very complex).

  4. Ravi says:

    I don’t know if you already use flock.com , but that’s a fun thing to think about when the browsers evolve to intrinsically match web 2.0 practices rather than relying on AJAX for everything.

  5. Jim says:

    Bryan, it would be great if you were here. I think my next area of investigation (after video content) will be just that, Web 2.0 story telling. I was wondering about multimedia story telling, across platforms and media (for example from blog to flickr to video) moving in narrative trails out through the net. Any tips?

  6. Stephanie says:


    Flock is amazing in its integration capabilities. I have been using it for some time now and think it is necessary to bring examples like this into the class. After all, for me at least, it is the ease of use/integration of the tools that make the social networking part of web 2.0 ‘sticky’.

  7. Patrik says:

    I will do a conference presentation in May on “Intertwined channels: Communicative practices on Web 2.0”. It is interesting how web 2.0 (whatever it is) affects communication and the construction of discourse. I guess some key concepts will be channels (not necessarily as seperate entities but rather building something larger together), referentiality, social software, participatory media, materiality, RFIDs and such things. Also I will need to problematize the idead of “web 2.0”. I am looking forward to a continued discussion about these things.

  8. Jim says:

    It is interesting that Dina has also included a Web 2.0 theme in her first post as guest blogger. Looking at the link to the Technorati list for the subject I took particular notice of the graph for daily postings over the last 30 days. It almost doubled from December 05 to January 06.

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