Web 3.0 watch: IFA fair wants to be prepared – and two more signals

See the web 3.0 evolving. This shows zipipop's concept of "intention brodcasting". The social-mobile service of zipiko.com is based on the idea.

Mobile social semantic web evolving - it is so 3.0!

Today I want to start a series around the emerging issue “web 3.0″, the controversial buzzword with its dazzling meaning. Like with the forerunner “web 2.0″ sober clarifications will help us discerning hype from reality. Today we start with three seemingly unjoined signals from the domains of consumer electronics fairs, web debate and killer startups .-)

Things are networked and start to speak - Nabaztag rabbit

Things are networked and start to speak - Nabaztag rabbit

SIGNAL 1: IFA fair opens up to household appliances – maybe they are preparing for the internet of things

Today the IFA fair is starting in Berlin. The first time the worlds largest consumer electronics fair will be sharing the spotlight with household appliances like washers and dryers. Two facts from the market trends department:

  • Trend: From “passive cocooning” to “active cocooning”, e.g. having guests and cooking at home. Funny symptom: A lot of shows around flat, garden, house and … the kitchen. You will hardly find a minute in German tv these days, when there is no cooking show running on one channel or the other.) As a consequence of this “active cocooning / social cocooning” trend there is a growth market for household appliances.
  • Growth market household appliances: Market research firm Freedonia Group forecasts an increase by 3.1 percent each year through 2011 (redOrbit)

But there should be an other good reason for IFA fair to open up to the wider spectrum of devices. In the next years we will see a jump in the ict evolution. Maybe it will be more radical than the innovations brought by web 2.0 with the blogosophere, youtube, social networking, Google maps etc. that changed lives and business.

In the web 3.0 aera a lot of things, now stupid and silent, will have an ongoing “conversation” with us and together. They will be networked and are broadcasting their sensor data, search for saving opportunities and the best place and price for their own recycling. The wellknown Nabaztag rabbit of today will be conceived as a rather stupid interface in retrospect.

IFA Tip: If you are going to visit IFA avoid being bored by the next super size flatscreen. Better find the places, where current research projects are presented. At the Science and Technology Forum you will have showcases of tomorrow’s tech with issues like Alternate Reality Games, 3D blogs or cooperative traffic. Looks like Robert Scoble is at showstoppers event.

SIGNAL 2: Buzzword “pragmatic web” – another round in the controversy concerning the semantic web

Stephen Downes’ recent article Ten Futures: Where Science Fiction Could Become Real in the we magazine starts with point one “The Pragmatic Web – Forget about the Semantic Web.” It was heard in the community of semwebbies, skeptics and anti-semwebbies. There is a popularity count of 662 diggs up to now, which shows a lot of relevance attribution (digg).

Stephen Downes, working as a senior researcher (National Research Council Canada http://www.downes.ca/me/index.htm), seems to be a bit angry or at least impatient with the semantic web progress (or goals?). We have to go into details, because “semantic web” has different meanings to different people. We should not start bashing until we know who and which we mean. We will check these complex issues in an other post, promised.

SIGNAL 3: Web 3.0 just starting out there. See something like “Intention Broadcasting” of Zipipop.

Intention Broadcasting is the process of spreading awareness of your intentions via information and communication technologies. Think status messaging with an emphasis on the future. Zipipop at Flickr

Dear reader, maybe you do not use microblogging tools like twitter (I have a mixed audience, I know). But maybe  you use status messages in your Skype app at least. There starts the new quality, looking quite ordinary. It is no accident that the metaphor of twitter is the swarm of tweeting birds. The tiny bits of information (twitter’s tagline: “What are you doing?”) must not be underscored! They are the means of social coordination, the glue of interaction systems in the context of your social network. So there is this extra dimension beyond the semantics. You see the issue of the “pragmatic web” right here, where the situational context determines meaning. The semantics is not enough – by definition.

In nuce: Encyclopedic knowledge like in Wikipedia is not enough. Semantic structures are fine, but they are not enough for the understanding of people, their situations, intentions, interests. There is a lot of wisdom in the metaphor “Intention Broadcasting” as used by Zipipop.

CONTEXT: The technological evolution of wired and wireless networks, web, media and behavioral patterns.

RELEVANCE: Web 3.0 is just emerging and will change your business in the next 5+ years. We have to figure out, what it is and how it works.

So I think it is time for another hype check. I have done one in 2006 concerning web 2.0 (resulting in the web2.0report.de). What it means for the masses and the real business beyond the web geek minority. Today I want to start a series of posts around “web 3.0″. For your convenience get the rss feed or the newsletter version of my blog.

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About WS

foresight expert, technology analyst, strategy consultant

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  1. “Live better with a rabbit!” « JuneBrenner’s Weblog - September 4, 2008

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