Monday, February 21, 2011

Reflections on the Internet on a Monday Morning

For many of us the internet was something we were introduced to in the mid to late 1990's, when AOL became prevalent, giving us services to the web and content that we never knew was even possible.

Then if you recall we had the early search engines like Alta Vista, Yahoo and eventually Google appeared and the internet's vast content and possibilities became more real.

I remember when I was a VC in the late 1990's we still had people questionning the feasibility of buying goods on the internet, despite the early and evident success of eBay. Although when I look back and appreciate we were in our early content days, there really was a limited amount of good quality content back then, even Wikipedia did not exist.

Today there are literally billions approaching trillions of pages and we have literally too many options to choose from, exacerbating a new problem of drowning in possibilities - making search and profile intelligence even more important.

However is the Web dead? - if we can spend an entire day making use of the internet but never in the browser on the web via applications, IM, streaming services, then one needs to think of the evolution - with smart tablet applications with access to only the content the want - we need to be reminded that the power still lies in aps and servicing my needs.

Will we start to have a new generation of curator guides like in museums that are experts on searching for your needs and being your search coach and keep finding us the best content possible. We have crawlers that source content based on our needs, but still the context is often missing let alone the filter of a human mind, and also the coaching back on content value.

Facebook is rapidly shifting their strategy to integrate technology through its site, as you can now use Facebook to log into sites such as CNN, New York Time, recommend stories you have read to your friends, making the environment more porous.

Apple with the iPAD is pursuing a similar strategy with its IOS Platform.

Let's not all forget the internet is not even two decades only .... and it is the environment we rely on daily to do our work, support our personal lives, and stay connected.

What the future holds we can start to see with the increasing consumer electronic companies like Sony, LG integrating the internet with smarter appliances, media and entertainment, cell phones - striving to keep us in their ecosystem.

No one has done this as well yet as the Apple experience. We are in the process of upgrading our office equipment, and my team has finally convinced me the Apple is the only way to go.

What do you think is next?

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