ETCon 2004: Tim O'Reilly Keynote


What's on Tim's Radar:

The net is the platform. The new killer apps of the Internet, eBay, Yahoo!, Amazon.com, PayPal, Mapquest, and others are on the O'Reilly best seller list, but moreover, are running on a new platform called the Internet. The software lives somewhere other than your local machine. These apps run on open source, but themselves are not open source.

Tim compares Amazon and Barnes & Noble. Amazon has harnessed the user community, but B&N has not. Amazon outsells B&N. Mapquest has not offered any social services. GeoURL and GeoAnnotation are some interesting projects in this area. Microsoft's Mappoint has an API, but they have no clue about end user participation. Tim believes that the first mapping site to bring social aspects to their site will come out on top.

Wordspy is a web site that creates dictionary style entries of words as they are coined. The site provides insight to culture as it evolves and words in action.

iPOD is a combination of hardware and backend system. However, wireless is missing. Also, there's no architecture of participation. GarageBand let's you create music, but there's not way in iTunes to share it. iChat knows about buddies, but iTunes and iPhoto doesn't. Orkut let's you organize friends into groups. More sites need to use this kind of information.

Managing relationships. Identity is about more than who I am and who you are, its about how we relate. Where is my address book? Is it on my phone, on my PC, on PayPal, on Okrut?

Why can't we have P2P identity sharing? Why can't I manage my friends on a local level and tie that into this other applications? (This is the DigitalMe idea in some ways.)

On the issue of mining the net for data, Tim talks about Technorati. He also mentions OrgNet.com's analysis of book purchase patterns. The study revealed a divided populace. Only two books connect the liberal and conservative book buyers. Interesting.

Here's Tim's summary:

  • Hacking in all its forms
  • Second generation network effects
    • social software
    • network enabled market research and data visibility
  • Architectures of participation
  • Getting beyond single device
  • Robotics an hardware hacking