Saturday, October 04, 2008

Widgets, Communities and the Edge

The web is making it easier and easier for groups and communities to form. Groups foster social cohesion by having members demonstrate affiliation and by the use of objects to create community identity. Think Star Trek fans wearing Star Trek uniforms at conventions or fans of Metallica wearing Metallica branded tee-shirts.

Unfortunately web based methods of indicating affiliation don’t really translate to the real world. This is important as groups are increasingly rooted in the real world, indeed traditional line between cyberspace and the real world is becoming increasingly blurry.

Personalisation services offer the ability to create physical objects that indicate affiliation and community identity. These services are centralised and therein lays the problem. By being centralised they impose a coordination cost on the groups.

Widgets offer services like and Ninjazoo the opportunity to offer personalised and communitised products directly into the community without getting in the way. Widgets provide a means of removing the coordination cost on groups by meshing the service within the normal activities and sites of the group.

It is taking the mountain to Muhammad rather taking Muhammad to the mountain.

It is the distribution of core functionality where the true value of widgets lies. Not with the distribution of content but allowing web services to adjust to an Edge Economy.

Tags:, Ninjazoo, Edge Economy, Web Services, Web 3.0