Debby Dearest

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Web 2.0

February2

Thoughts about Tim O’Reilly’s essay “What is Web 2.0?”
http://oreilly.com/pub/a/web2/archive/what-is-web-20.html?page=1

This is by far one of the most interesting articles I’ve ever read. I regularly visit sites mentioned in this article without even realizing what concepts and breakthrough technology have gone into their development. Our generation has forgotten what it was like before you could interact with websites and even purchase things from the Internet. As technology keeps advancing at an incredible pace, so do our habits and ways of life. The Web is now a platform where you can control your own data, offer services instead of just software, connect to people all over the world, and even build a database of knowledge the size of which is incomprehensible. Looking back at my daily interactions with the Internet, I had no idea that so many concepts and new innovations came together in such a beautiful way. It really is art. For example, my home page for Firefox is Google. I use Google everyday without even realizing how wide-ranging of a service it really is. O’Reilly talks about how Google’s breakthrough in search was developing a method of using the link structure of the web rather than just the characteristics of documents to provide better search results. This method was called PageRank. To this day, Google is the undisputed leader in the search market.

Another interesting idea O’Reilly talks about is how with Web 2.0, we can harness collective intelligence. Wikipedia is a perfect example. It is an online encyclopedia unique in the aspect that ANYONE can add an entry and edit someone else’s. We have all been told in high school that using Wikipedia for research papers was a “no-no” because of this trust factor that goes along with posting what you know about a certain topic online.

My favorite part of the article is when O’Reilly talked about the role blogging had played in the Web 2.0 era. Before taking this class and being assigned the task making a personal blog (which was one of the most frustrating, yet insightful, experiences of my life) my only experience with a personal home page was my Facebook account. The interesting thing about a blog is that you can post anything because you own the space. You can share your feelings, opinions, thoughts, experiences, and most importantly….your life. You can give people an inside look at who you are and what you’re passionate about. Along with that is the ingenious invention of RSS. THANK GOD you showed us how to use this, Professor Groom, because it is one of the most convenient tools ever! You can literally subscribe to a blog with the click of a button. Every post and update will automatically come to you in an easy to read format. You can be connected to so many people at the same time all the while sharing your own experiences with them.

Web 2.0 has become an interactive platform with which you can share data, spread ideas, socially network, and most importantly – start a revolution. This is going to be a great semester. Ps – The Saints are gonna win the Super Bowl. Who Dat!

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