There was a very interesting post over at Royal Pingdom about trends in current web terminology using data collected from Google’s Insights for Search (I mentioned it in my webometrics reddit but I don’t know how many of my blog readers also follow that). What I found most interesting was the slight decline of both “web 3.0″ and the “semantic web”, terms which are often used synonymously. It is also interesting to note, from looking at Google Insights for Search myself, that “Web 5.0″ is a term on the rise (albeit from a very low starting point):
Could it be that the premature discussion of “Web 3.0″, “Semantic web”, and the over marketing of “Web 2.0″ has led to it all being labelled as hype by the public? It remains to be seen what effect it will have on future funding and marketing of the next generation of web services.
As for “Web 5.0″, I still think it was described best by Stuart(2007). I have already started to forget most of what I know in case they charge per terabyte of data we need to upload.
I hadn’t checked my RSS feeds for a couple of days before today, so I only just found out that del.icio.us (or delicious.com as it now styles itself) turned five a couple of days ago. Whilst delicious has been a stalwart member of the web 2.0 movement, you can’t help but feel that it, and many of the other web 2.0 properties are a little bit stale. It is time for web 3.0 to enter the arena.
Whilst there have been lots of opinions on what web 3.0 is, none of them have seemed particularly appropriate to me, seemingly having more to do with a person’s desire to define web 3.0 than using web 3.0 to describe a change on the web. For me web 3.0 will be the widespread adoption of a feature that makes the web exciting again.
There was a time, a few years ago, when I was searching for sites that were adopting web 2.0 technologies. When I am excited enough to start searching for sites that are using a new set of technologies, then I will know what web 3.0 is.
Everyone seems to want to be the person to define a web number, first web 3.0 went, and now web 4.0 has gone:
If Web 2.0 is the rounded corners and the Internet as a platform, and Web 3.0 is seamless integration of the various tools built on the platform, Web 4.0 must be algorithmic incorporation of that data into something useful.
So I thought I would get in and define web 5.0:
Web 5.0 is when quantum computing provides us the opportunity to upload ourselves to the web rather than just our data.
Obviously there may be a few more technical stages before we can solve the planet’s overcrowding problem by living in Second Life 2.0, but what is the point of having a decimal point if we don’t use it? Dewey would be turning in his grave.
Whilst there will be those who say that people won’t want to be uploaded, I think it is equally likely that there are people who don’t want a fully integrated and documented life with every aspect detailed and tagged! Too often the blogosphere focuses on technological capabilities and how geeks would like to use the web, rather than how the mass want to use it.
Even if the web does develop in the way people predict, do these changes really necessitate new web numbers? If we accept that the move from web 1.0 to web 2.0 is a paradigm shift in the way many people view the web, then surely the introduction of the terms ‘web 3.0′ and ‘web 4.0′ require equally large changes in perception; the proposed definitions seem more like tinkering round the edges.