“The Web is Dead” Is Another Way to Talk About Web 3.0

Since 2007 I’ve been noting a set of changes that collectively are changing the foundations of communications on the Web in ways that are more far-reaching than what we refer to as Web 2.0.

These include:

  • Highly interactive application experiences that don’t use browsers
  • Decentralized web and email communications – branding and 1:1 messages are often on intermediated sites
  • Technical drivers are XML and the semantic Web
  • SaaS and Fremium are its business drivers.

Last week, when Wired published its cover story “The Web Is Dead,” many of you suggested that it sounded a lot like the Web 3.0 theme. Yep, we’re describing the same thing. Just as FTP and Usenet are transport mechanisms used but not focused on by consumers, part of the Web will be behind the scenes for other applications.

Inside of Reuters,Web 3.0 was entirely defined by “the semantic Web.”  I think that is overly focused on an important technical mechanism.  Web 2.0 was no more just RSS feeds than Web 3.0 will be just structured data.  They are enablers for a growth of UX and interactivity beyond Web 2.0 today.

However, HTML5, RDFa, and the semantic Web are technical foundations for huge changes in how we build interactive mediums. This video on Web 3.0 from Kate Ray features web luminaries describing the importance of structured data in evolving our medium. The technical structures are important, but the art and application that will go along with this are unfinished. RSS along isn’t a revolution, and neither is the semantic Web — but they are both prerequisites.

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