Weekly Wrapup, 5-9 November 2007

Here is a summary of the week’s Web Tech action on Read/WriteWeb. For those of you reading this via our website, note that you can subscribe to the Weekly Wrapups, either via the special RSS feed or by email.

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Web News

OpenSocial, Facebook Ad Network, MySpace HyperTargeting

Last week was all about Google’s OpenSocial, a project that will tie together Google, MySpace and other social networking platforms in a common widget development environment. This week the discussion raged on. By the end of the week it had boiled down to two themes:

1) OpenSocial isn’t quite as “open” as it makes out to be – check out Marshall Kirkpatrick’s post for more. Also see Bernard Lunn’s post on the privacy implications of OpenSocial. In summary, OpenSocial seems to be less about open standards, and more about Google setting the standards. Nevertheless, it also has a lot of things going for it – see Sean Ammirati’s post Google’s Kevin Marks Discusses OpenSocial at Defrag to find out Google’s plans for OpenSocial.

2) Facebook isn’t in a rush to join OpenSocial; indeed this week they focused primarily on pushing out their new advertising network. See Josh Catone’s coverage of Facebook’s ad plans. Also Josh wrote about why Facebook shouldn’t fear OpenSocial.

On the advertising front, there was action from MySpace this week too. The world’s largest social networking site announced that it would be launching a new advertising program called “HyperTargeting,” which uses profile data to target ads to users.

This week we ran a poll asking: Will Facebook Join OpenSocial? See a summary of the comments here. The results at press time:

Yes 44%

No 46%

Open What? 10%

No GPhone, but Google Announces Android

The other big Web news of the week: after months if not years of speculation, Google announced that they are not in fact developing a single phone, but rather an ostensibly open-source mobile operating system called Android.

Other Web tech news this week:

Web Products

Blogcosm Challenges Technorati, Techmeme to Parse the Blogosphere

Blogcosm is a new company aiming to build a directory of the blogosphere. From the mundane to the esoteric, the company wants to provide users with a rich data set about any particular blog of interest or the vertical market it is in.
Marshall Kirkpatrick met founder Scott Lawton, an old time geek from Massachusetts, this week at the first annual Blog World Expo in Las Vegas. Blogcosm built a blog directory of all the speakers at Blog World Expo and the blogs they write for, as a case study.

Check our post for more, but note that the current Blogcosm site is very basic and doesn’t have any of the sophisticated features the founder talked up in the post.

Where the Cool Photos Hang Out

Remember when Flickr used to be the elite hang out of the visual digerati? By initially embracing talented photographers, Flickr developed a reputation as the place to go to check out amazing amateur and professional photography on the web. But then Yahoo! came along and encouraged users of its Photos service to migrate to Flickr, opening the site up to anyone and their vacation pictures. Has Flickr become boring and mundane? Where should we turn to now to find all the cool photos?

Flickr is still a great photo hosting platform used by a large number of amazing photographers, but cutting through the increased noise can be a chore. The six sites in this post will help you locate the more artistic photos out there on the web, without having to wade through any photos of Aunt Millie at the beach.

TrueKnowledge Demos Its Semantic Search Engine

Venture funded UK semantic search engine TrueKnowledge unveiled a demo of its private beta this week – and Read/WriteWeb was one of the first to publish a review. TrueKnowledge looks like an interesting site to watch. One cannot help but think of the still-unlaunched Powerset, but it’s also reminiscent of the very real Ask.com “smart answers”.

You can find many other startup profiles in our Startups category.

Analysis

How a Startup Inspired HP’s Print 2.0 Strategy

Big computing company HP was promoting a strange concept at the Web 2.0 Summit in October: Print 2.0. At first R/WW editor Richard MacManus couldn’t figure out what this meant. Web-based printers? Some new form of inkless paper? Curious to know more, while he was at the Summit Richard met up with HP’s Antonio Rodriguez – formerly of startup Tabblo, now Director of Research and Development for HP‚Äôs embedded web-to-print group.

The Social Enterprise – What Works, and What Doesn’t

Alex Iskold asks why should enterprises go social, and what are the compelling reasons for adoption?
On the surface there are immediate benefits, but from experience we know that
consumer technologies do not directly map into the enterprise. In this post, Alex explored
the reasons for the social enterprise, looking at what social technologies fit and raising
various concerns related to adoption.

E-Government Meets Web 2.0: Goodbye Portals, Hello Web Services

Gartner recently released a couple of reports on how web 2.0 technologies are being used in e-Government. The reports are entitled The E-Government Hype Cycle Meets Web 2.0 and Government and Web 2.0: The Emerging Midoffice. Both are about how modern e-government efforts are moving away from the ‘one stop shop’ portal approach that characterized early efforts, and are turning more towards mashups and (to quote the first Gartner report) “a number of mostly adventurous initiatives with blogs, wikis or islands in Second Life.” But it’s the ecosystem of Web Services – and the reusability of content and services that Web Services enable – that really excites Gartner about web 2.0 in e-government.

You can find more R/WW analysis posts here.

Events

This week the Defrag conference was held – and it got some rave reviews. For an overview of the conference, check out Sean Ammirati’s post: Five Themes From the Defrag Conference. See also Charles Knight’s live-blogging of the event on AltSearchEngines.

R/WW Network Blogs

last100

Our Digital Lifestyle blog last100 this week looked at the new NPR website. Daniel Langendorf wrote that “I’m in music heaven again. The new site uses a slick Flash pop-up player that’s super-easy to use and, as an added bonus, works across all NPR properties.”

Alt Search Engines

This week AltSearchEngines was busy live-blogging Defrag. But also there’s a feature post about people search engine Wink, which this week released advanced profile controls, giving people complete control over the contents of the search result for their name.

Read/WriteTalk

Sean Ammirati of Read/WriteTalk interviewed Kaliya Hamlin – a.k.a. Identity Woman. She’s recognized as one of the thought leaders in user centric identity, having helped organize Identity Commons and lead the Internet Identity Workshop.

That’s a wrap for another week! Enjoy your weekend everyone.

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