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Tim O’Reilly – Platform Wars? Are in a data war for data-lockin – Graphing Social Patterns Day 2 – October 9, 2007

Posted by John in Technology.
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Dave McClure is kicking off day two of Graphing Social Patterns.  Tim O’Reilly, who coined the term Web 2.0, is giving the keynote.  I’m sitting next to Sean Ammirati from Read Write Talk.

Dave kicks it off by defining the concept of Graphing Social Patterns.  Graphing Social Patterns is social media, social marketing, social networking, social platforms, and social applications.  Technically speaking it’s the platform, APIs, The Feed, metrics. 

Tim O’Reilly is up talking about O’Reilly and it’s experience working with Alpha Geeks.  In that new technologies are exploited by hackers, then entrepreneurs, then platform players.   Of course he’s plugging his new book “Facebook Application Market”.  Tim is a cutting edge publisher who is always ontop of the latest key trends and his books are ussually very relevant to developers and technical people.    Traditionally in software applications 87% of usage goes to 2% of the apps.  Will this be the future of software development?  If so it’s bad news?   On Facebook the top apps are taking off while the others are struggling.  Top categories are fun based apps and messaging.   Top apps are peaking out.  What does this mean? 

Tim revists web 2.0 – sytems that harness network effects and collective intelligence.  A network effect data-lockin is the key to success.   Tim goes on to give some examples of where the holes are in facebook.  I like where he’s going with this.  He is pointing out that the data is available.  Are we in a data land grab or “data war”?  Everyone wants the data lockin.

Extraction from the data for user benefit -  example xobni.  It’s about the Internet Operating Systems.  Facebook is a subsytem it isn’t the whole thing.  We are in a platform war – who will own it. 

I have a question for Tim.

Tim:  What is the right strategy for the company who wants to dominate the platform?  Is it about the developers or is it about the machines (data)?

Things Tim wants from Social Networking:  wants it to reflect his real social relationships, to help him manage those contacts, to manage groups of people, to recognize asymmetry in relationships, to get fine grained control over what I see and what I ignore, and he wants to discover interesting people.

Other interesting trend:  purpose based social networks like Geni.  The question is how do social networks fit into each person relationships.  It’s hard.

He’s talking about an interesting concept that I would call ‘implicit protocols’ between friends.  There really isn’t any way to establish the platform to allow for implicit protocols.  This in my opinion is big opportunity.  Tim is driving this point home about the problems he has with facebook.   Tim highlights Jaiku as having smart intelligence.  They were just acquired by Google.  I met these guys at the Web2.0 Expo.  Smart guys.  Congrats.

I asked Tim the question about the role of developers.  He answered that developers are still key and the company who can help developers make money will win the platform wars.  He dodged the point that machines are the new developers – this is in direct conflict with his early statements around the importance of data.  I know that Tim is pro-developer and who isn’t but my question is ‘are the machines the new developer’.  Google has been quietly building a super computer in the cloud and IBM announced yesterday that they are jumping in the game.  The conversation on Techmeme on the IBM Google announcment is here.

The cloud is the computer.  I wonder what the developer community will look like around that.

Overall a really good keynote from Tim.  Thanks Tim.

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1. E L S U A ~ A KM Blog by Luis Suarez » Blog Archive » Micro-Blogging and The Obvious? - October 9, 2007

[...] have been taken by storm earlier on today on the recent acquisition from Jaiku by Google, here I am observing how it is all going to pace out over the course of time and reflecting at the same time some more [...]


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