Home Weekly Wrapup, 15-19 September 2008

Weekly Wrapup, 15-19 September 2008

It’s time for our weekly summary of Web Technology news, products and trends. This week we surveyed the leading online banking products and 10 recommended photo sharing sites. We also checked out a new ‘deep web’ search tool and reported on Joost’s move to the browser. Our prediction question this week was about the controversial ‘Twitter for enterprise’ app Yammer – check out the results below. On the trends side, we looked into a report about “super influencers”, gave you some suggestions for quality social media consultants, reported on the latest Tim Berners-Lee foundation, and analyzed how the economy shake-ups this week affect the tech sector. Last but not least, we bring you the latest from our new Enterprise Channel.

Web Products

Banking 2.0: Money Management Moves to The Cloud

There was a time when managing finances from your computer meant you had to use desktop software. Today, that’s no longer the case. There are now a number of applications that let you do your banking in the cloud, a trend we’ve dubbed “banking 2.0.”

These sites aren’t just simplified versions of our former desktop apps, either. Instead, they offer a number of features that take advantage of their “always on” status. Forget downloading updates and typing in your transactions line-by-line, these new banking 2.0 sites can offer you better insight into your financial situation with no additional effort on your part beyond just logging in.

Store, Tag and Print: 10 Great Photo Sharing Services

The photo sharing market is growing at a steady clip and new services are released regularly. In this round-up, we compare the features and usability of 10 of our favorite photo sharing sites. Two years ago, we published a similar list. So now seems a good time for us to revisit the topic.

Some of these sites focus more on mainstream users and photo-finishing, while others stand out because of their extensive social features. Note: we’ve included a full table of features for the services listed (see below).

Click here for the full-size version of this table.

Sometimes Google Isn’t Enough: New Research Engine Searches “Deep Web”

What do you do when you need to research something on the web? You just google it, right? Using a web search engine like Google is usually fine for casual searches, but when you need to delve deep into a subject, it just won’t do. What you really need is a research engine that explores the unindexed reaches of the Deep Web. For that, there’s now Infovell, “the world’s research engine.”

Less than 0.2% of the web is indexed and some of the most valuable information lies beyond the search results returned from traditional engines. That’s where a service like Infovell can help. This new subscription-based software-as-a-service (SaaS) engine lets you explore content found on the Deep Web.

See also: Semantics + Google = SemantiFind

Finally: Joost Now Available on the Web

This week Joost announced that all of its content is now available directly on its website and not just through its desktop client. Joost was one of the most hyped-up companies on the web when the peer-to-peer streaming video service was still in stealth mode in 2006; and beta invites were rare and coveted. However, once users actually got a look at Joost, disillusion quickly set in. Joost’s video quality was very high and it had signed up a wide range of content producers, but its downfall was its reliance on a desktop client. Users were already switching to viewing video on the web and having to start up a client just to watch video was simply too inconvenient.

RWW Predictions: Funding for Yammer

This week’s prediction question focused on the winner of the TechCrunch50 event: Yammer. Yammer is a communications product that duplicates the functionality of Twitter, but with an enterprise twist. We certainly have our doubts about Yammer as an enterprise tool. However, we wanted to know your prediction for the financial future of Yammer. Will Yammer raise a round of funding in 2008 or 2009. If so, how much will they take? As at time of writing, here were the results:


Web Trends

Are You a Super Influencer?

A new report from Universal McCann discusses the rise of “a new breed of super influencers” that has been created by “the tools of the social media revolution.” Before we all don our superhero capes, let’s look more closely at the findings of the report.

Entitled When did we start trusting strangers? How the internet turned us all into influencers, the premise is that influence was moved beyond “professional and top down” (mainstream media) and into Web-enabled peer to peer influence. But despite McCann calling this a “democratisation of influence”, all influencers are not equal. There are “super influencers” who are “extremely heavy users of social media, particularly in terms of content creation.” Are you one of these people? Let’s check out what the characteristics are…

Seven Social Media Consultants That Deliver Tangible Value

Is social media nothing but snake oil? Sometimes it can seem that way. As economies shift and trends emerge, would-be experts start popping up like weeds. Really good social media experts are a treasure – and they’re not always easy to find.

In this post we highlight seven social media consultants that consistently bring tangible value to the table. These folks aren’t full of hot air – they use their blogs to offer clear examples, links, tutorials and other resources you can put to use. If the goods you can see for free are so solid, that’s all the more reason to investigate paying for these peoples’ services. We hope this list will help you get smarter and maybe save a whole lot of money and anguish.

Tim Berners Lee Launches World Wide Web Foundation – Will it Be Effective?

Tim Berners Lee, the inventor of the World Wide Web, announced this week the formation of a new organization dedicated to studying how the web works and expanding access to the billions of people who can’t get online today. The World Wide Web Foundation kicked off with $5 million in support from media funders the Knight Foundation.

Can yet another organization really make a difference? Some observers seem to be suffering from Organization Fatigue, but we’re interested to see what Berners Lee can do. A group dedicated to deep study of the web and the obstacles to its growth sounds like a great idea to us. Not everyone agrees.

How Decoupled is The Innovation Economy From Rest of The Economy?

What a week of market mayhem! How odd having that as the backdrop to the Web 2.0 Expo in New York. We have been sounding alerts about the economic backdrop to our world of innovation for nearly a year. Back in February we wrote that this is not our bubble. Since then, the news from the economy has gotten worse and nobody is suggesting it will get better any time soon. Reading the papers is pretty grim (unless you stick to Sports or Arts). Yet we contend that it is not grim in the ‘innovation economy’. Here’s why…


RWW Enterprise Channel

Report: Nearly 70% of Businesses Allow Social Media Usage

A new report about Enterprise adoption of Web 2.0 technologies, by Awareness, Inc., shows that employers are increasingly allowing staff to use social media applications in working hours. Awareness puts the figure at 69 percent of businesses in 2008, up from 37 percent last year.

It’s the latest in a string of reports this year – from Awareness, Forrester and others – which provide data about the growth of web 2.0 in the enterprise. It’ll be a $4.6 Billion industry by 2013, according to Forrester. See more of Awareness’ findings in this post.

Email us if you’re interested in writing for ReadWriteWeb’s Enterprise Channel.


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

About ReadWrite’s Editorial Process

The ReadWrite Editorial policy involves closely monitoring the tech industry for major developments, new product launches, AI breakthroughs, video game releases and other newsworthy events. Editors assign relevant stories to staff writers or freelance contributors with expertise in each particular topic area. Before publication, articles go through a rigorous round of editing for accuracy, clarity, and to ensure adherence to ReadWrite's style guidelines.

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