What Is Net 2.0 – O’Reilly Media

What Is Net 2.0 – O’Reilly Media

Design Patterns and Enterprise Fashions for the Subsequent Era of Software program

by Tim O’Reilly

Oct. 2009: Tim O’Reilly and John Battelle reply the query of “What’s subsequent for Net 2.0?” in Net Squared: Net 2.0 5 Years On.

The bursting of the dot-com bubble within the fall of 2001 marked a turning level for the net. Many individuals concluded that the net was overhyped, when in truth bubbles and consequent shakeouts look like a standard characteristic of all technological revolutions. Shakeouts usually mark the purpose at which an ascendant expertise is able to take its place at heart stage. The pretenders are given the bum’s rush, the actual success tales present their power, and there begins to be an understanding of what separates one from the opposite.

The idea of “Net 2.0” started with a convention brainstorming session between O’Reilly and MediaLive Worldwide. Dale Dougherty, internet pioneer and O’Reilly VP, famous that removed from having “crashed”, the net was extra necessary than ever, with thrilling new functions and websites popping up with shocking regularity. What’s extra, the businesses that had survived the collapse appeared to have some issues in frequent. Might or not it’s that the dot-com collapse marked some type of turning level for the net, such {that a} name to motion corresponding to “Net 2.0” may make sense? We agreed that it did, and so the Net 2.0 Convention was born.

Within the yr and a half since, the time period “Net 2.0” has clearly taken maintain, with greater than 9.5 million citations in Google. However there’s nonetheless an enormous quantity of disagreement about simply what Net 2.0 means, with some folks decrying it as a meaningless advertising buzzword, and others accepting it as the brand new typical knowledge.

This text is an try to make clear simply what we imply by Net 2.0.

In our preliminary brainstorming, we formulated our sense of Net 2.0 by instance:

Net 1.0 Net 2.0
DoubleClick –> Google AdSense
Ofoto –> Flickr
Akamai –> BitTorrent
mp3.com –> Napster
Britannica On-line –> Wikipedia
private web sites –> running a blog
keep away from –> upcoming.org and EVDB
area title hypothesis –> search engine marketing
web page views –> price per click on
display scraping –> internet providers
publishing –> participation
content material administration techniques –> wikis
directories (taxonomy) –> tagging (“folksonomy”)
stickiness –> syndication

The listing went on and on. However what was it that made us determine one utility or method as “Net 1.0” and one other as “Net 2.0”? (The query is especially pressing as a result of the Net 2.0 meme has turn into so widespread that corporations at the moment are pasting it on as a advertising buzzword, with no actual understanding of simply what it means. The query is especially troublesome as a result of a lot of these buzzword-addicted startups are positively not Net 2.0, whereas a few of the functions we recognized as Net 2.0, like Napster and BitTorrent, aren’t even correctly internet functions!) We started attempting to tease out the ideas which can be demonstrated in a method or one other by the success tales of internet 1.0 and by probably the most fascinating of the brand new functions.

1. The Net As Platform

Like many necessary ideas, Net 2.0 would not have a tough boundary, however moderately, a gravitational core. You’ll be able to visualize Net 2.0 as a set of ideas and practices that tie collectively a veritable photo voltaic system of websites that exhibit some or all of these ideas, at a various distance from that core.

Determine 1 reveals a “meme map” of Net 2.0 that was developed at a brainstorming session throughout FOO Camp, a convention at O’Reilly Media. It’s totally a lot a piece in progress, however reveals the numerous concepts that radiate out from the Net 2.0 core.

For instance, on the first Net 2.0 convention, in October 2004, John Battelle and I listed a preliminary set of ideas in our opening discuss. The primary of these ideas was “The online as platform.” But that was additionally a rallying cry of Net 1.0 darling Netscape, which went down in flames after a heated battle with Microsoft. What’s extra, two of our preliminary Net 1.0 exemplars, DoubleClick and Akamai, had been each pioneers in treating the net as a platform. Individuals do not usually consider it as “internet providers”, however in truth, advert serving was the primary broadly deployed internet service, and the primary broadly deployed “mashup” (to make use of one other time period that has gained foreign money of late). Each banner advert is served as a seamless cooperation between two web sites, delivering an built-in web page to a reader on yet one more laptop. Akamai additionally treats the community because the platform, and at a deeper degree of the stack, constructing a clear caching and content material supply community that eases bandwidth congestion.

Nonetheless, these pioneers offered helpful contrasts as a result of later entrants have taken their answer to the identical drawback even additional, understanding one thing deeper concerning the nature of the brand new platform. Each DoubleClick and Akamai had been Net 2.0 pioneers, but we are able to additionally see the way it’s potential to appreciate extra of the chances by embracing further Net 2.0 design patterns.

Let’s drill down for a second into every of those three circumstances, teasing out a few of the important parts of distinction.

Netscape vs. Google

If Netscape was the usual bearer for Net 1.0, Google is most definitely the usual bearer for Net 2.0, if solely as a result of their respective IPOs had been defining occasions for every period. So let’s begin with a comparability of those two corporations and their positioning.

Netscape framed “the net as platform” when it comes to the outdated software program paradigm: their flagship product was the net browser, a desktop utility, and their technique was to make use of their dominance within the browser market to determine a marketplace for high-priced server merchandise. Management over requirements for displaying content material and functions within the browser would, in principle, give Netscape the type of market energy loved by Microsoft within the PC market. Very similar to the “horseless carriage” framed the car as an extension of the acquainted, Netscape promoted a “webtop” to switch the desktop, and deliberate to populate that webtop with info updates and applets pushed to the webtop by info suppliers who would buy Netscape servers.

In the long run, each internet browsers and internet servers turned out to be commodities, and worth moved “up the stack” to providers delivered over the net platform.

Google, against this, started its life as a local internet utility, by no means bought or packaged, however delivered as a service, with clients paying, straight or not directly, for using that service. Not one of the trappings of the outdated software program trade are current. No scheduled software program releases, simply steady enchancment. No licensing or sale, simply utilization. No porting to completely different platforms in order that clients can run the software program on their very own tools, only a massively scalable assortment of commodity PCs operating open supply working techniques plus homegrown functions and utilities that nobody outdoors the corporate ever will get to see.

At backside, Google requires a competency that Netscape by no means wanted: database administration. Google is not only a assortment of software program instruments, it is a specialised database. With out the info, the instruments are ineffective; with out the software program, the info is unmanageable. Software program licensing and management over APIs–the lever of energy within the earlier era–is irrelevant as a result of the software program by no means want be distributed however solely carried out, and in addition as a result of with out the power to gather and handle the info, the software program is of little use. In reality, the worth of the software program is proportional to the dimensions and dynamism of the info it helps to handle.

Google’s service is just not a server–though it’s delivered by a large assortment of web servers–nor a browser–though it’s skilled by the person inside the browser. Nor does its flagship search service even host the content material that it allows customers to search out. Very similar to a telephone name, which occurs not simply on the telephones at both finish of the decision, however on the community in between, Google occurs within the area between browser and search engine and vacation spot content material server, as an enabler or intermediary between the person and his or her on-line expertise.

Whereas each Netscape and Google could possibly be described as software program corporations, it is clear that Netscape belonged to the identical software program world as Lotus, Microsoft, Oracle, SAP, and different corporations that acquired their begin within the 1980’s software program revolution, whereas Google’s fellows are different web functions like eBay, Amazon, Napster, and sure, DoubleClick and Akamai.

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