Current affairs, Past events & Future trends

The 21st century is seeing the impact of globalisation in many forms. International citizens of mixed parentage, universities promoting distance learning, affordable air flight and the digital and genetic revolutions.

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Friday, October 13, 2006

Web, world wide

Web 2.0 technology seems to be in the paper more often than even China of late. This interactive technology, which means whole communities can be formed on the internet, is revolutionising the online game. One can do nearly everything through this new movement. There is last.fm for listening to music which is shared by listeners and reviewed/organised by netizens. Then there is Faceparty for keeping in touch with the University/college mates. Another is the non-stop party of MMPORGs for addicted gamers. Not to talk of the unmistakeable Youtube, which along with a few other video sites, is 0n the way to make a whole lot of people much less self-conscious. Some sites even allow - including Al Gore's site - to 'rip' authorised material and rearrange to their liking, before re-release. They call it 'mashing up' and Wikipedia is up to similar tricks also.

The whole point is for users to have greater control over the experience as never before. In the past this net game was the preserve of a few geeks, and to some extent it still is. The difference now is that websites are so much more integral to people's lives than a decade before, and will continue to be so. Those who want to position themselves for the future must get comfortable with the idea of conducting a lot of their business online and be ready to interact with others whilst at it. The ease with which things can be set up nowadays should be encouragement to even the most hardened Luddite.

This points to the issue of a blurring of the edges between reality and virtual worlds, tangible products and the seemingly transient. Knowing how to reply to an email will only get one so far. It is the man organising his email folder shortcut with his personal email provider's page that will be in the money.

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