11 Sep 2006 ............... Length about 500 words (4,000 bytes).
(Document started on 10 Sep 2006.)
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Department of Psychology,
University of Glasgow.
"Web 2.0" is the buzzword in EdTech for 2006.
For a briefing, try
For one version of meaning and history, try
O'Reilly's long and interesting article
Here, a brief note for myself. Web 2.0 is a new buzzword, and is not of course
used consistently. It has about 4 areas of overlapping meaning.
The different senses
- Underlying technology. XML (not HTML), ... Web services, not software
- The read/write web, not the read only web. First experience of the web was
that anyone can author, and everyone can read it (the document created by some
author) really easily, and find it pretty easily using search engines. The
emerging second experience of the web is of anyone can contribute to a single
document or service.
The web as a platform, supporting a different set of practices. Not an
architecture at the software level. E.g. iPod <-> itunes on a desktop
PC. No software updates on the web: the source/service/doc just changes [rss
to notify actively if required].
- Social software (not all web)
- Ease of use. It has long been striking that web pages evoke an
ultra-impatient user behaviour. Statistics are quoted suggesting that the
average length of time a user stays on one web site is about 2.5 mouse clicks.
This is frightening for commercial sites: that is how long they have to
interest or satisfy a customer before they are gone (typically not to return
for 6 months). Google is the commercially most successful web site; and google
has an ultra-simple main web page.
A major feature of the "web 2.0" type web things is ease of use (for writing
as well as reading). Blogs and wikis: one click and you are editing the
In contrast, VLEs require you to log on before you can do anything, then
insist you use their editor, their email etc. instead of it being integrated
into your own software and own user skills. Sinilarly many commercial
websites require you to logon, thus obstructing the user, preventing their use
being integrated seamlessly with the rest of your activities, etc.
Great quotes, phrases.
- "An attitude not a technology"
- "Turning from a model of permissions to a model of accountability"
- It's about syndication not coordination: not controlling what happens at the
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