Dennis D. McDonald ( consults from Alexandria Virginia. His services include writing & research, proposal development, and project management.

By Dennis D. McDonald

Over at The Podcast Roundtable I’ve posted an article about Web 2.0 definitions that I’d like to extract here; for the whole article, jump to here.

One of the reasons the adoption picture is cloudy for “enterprise adoption of web 2.0” is the variety of definitions that are available. Here’s an extract from the Podcast Roundtable article:

Basically, “Web 2.0″ means different things to different people.

  • To the programmer, it’s a set of tools and techniques that have the potential for fundamentally altering how network based applications and data are managed and delivered.
  • For start-ups and venture capitalists, it’s an opportunity to get in on the ground floor of another bubble.
  • For the corporate CIO or IT manager, it’s another set of technologies and architectures to be adopted and supported in an era of continued I.T. department budget strains.
  • For newer or smaller companies, it’s an opportunity to acquire technical and business process infrastructure at a fraction of the investment made by older and legacy companies.
  • For the marketing manager it’s an opportunity to “end-run” a traditionally unresponsive I.T. department.
  • For the CEO of an established legacy industry, it’s a threat of loss of control over customer relations.
  • For the customer it’s an opportunity to establish and maintain relationships that are both personally fulfilling and empowering in the face of the traditional power of larger institutions.

With so many perspectives, it’s no wonder that it’s difficult to get a clear picture, especially since what we are dealing with here is not only shifting technical architectures but a shift in how individuals and organization use the Internet to communicate electronically. We all know that different industries adopt technology at different rates, but in the case of Web 2.0, we’re talking not just about technology and associated business processes but also about the relationships built around how systems are developed and used.

My personal interest in this subject is anything but academic. I’m a consultant who makes a living helping companies plan and manage changes to technology and processes. With Web 2.0 the opportunity for change  is really quite massive — but not all at once, it seems.


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