Web 3.0 Is Coming – Are CIOs Ready?

by drjim on July 20, 2009

What Is The Web 3.0 And Are CIOs Going To Be Ready?

What Is The Web 3.0 And Are CIOs Going To Be Ready?

Oh Web 2.0, it seems like only yesterday that you arrived – is it possible that already you may be getting ready to be replaced? The answer is not quite yet, but the outline of what the Web 3.0 is going to look like is starting to firm up. CIOs have been slow to take advantage of all that the Web 2.0 had to offer, will they lag behind again when the Web 3.0 shows up?

What Was Web 2.0?

Before we run off and start making predictions about the future of the Internet, maybe it would be a good idea to take just a moment and make sure that we are all on the same page as to just exactly what the Web 2.0 is /was.

When the web first showed up (Web 1.0), everyone rushed out and created static web pages. That was a great start, but it got a bit boring because nothing changed without a great deal of effort. Web 2.0 extended what we had by adding blogging, Wikipedia, social networking (MySpace, Facebook, LinkedIn, etc.) and even microblogging (Twitter). This changed everything because all of a sudden things could be easily changed – and they were!

What Is Web 3.0 Going To Be?

So what’s next I can hear CIOs and soon-to-be CIOs asking. Dr. Jim Hendler at the Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute has been spending some time thinking about this and he’s come up with some interesting ideas. Dr. Hendler points out that it appears to all be based on Tim Berners-Lee’s (you know, the guy who invented the Web) vision of a semantic web.

In this next iteration of the web, what we’re going to see is more and more complex mashups of data from different applications being used to deliver data in more useful ways. Dr. Hendler believes that the read-write abilities of Web 2.0 applications will be used to build Web 3.0 applications that operate at the data, not the application level.

What’s Going To Make The Web 3.0 Happen?

Before the Web 3.0 can show up, a few critical pieces need to drop into place. Ultimately, what needs to happen is that it has to become easier to integrate web data resources. Here are the emerging technologies that are going to allow this to happen:

  • Resource Description Framework (RDF): provides a means to link data from multiple different websites or databases. Uses the SQL-like SPARQL query language.
  • Uniform Resource Identifiers (URI): We already have these – this is how you merge and map data that is found in different locations on the web.
  • Web Ontology Language (OWL): allows relationships to be inferred between data that is stored in different parts of the same application.

Final Thoughts

Rare are the times that CIOs actually have a chance to get in front of a significant change before it happens. Right now they have such a chance – Web 3.0 is not here yet, but it’s getting ready to arrive.

Spending time now to understand what business problems could be solved or solved better if you had a better description of the data that is available on the web is a necessary first step. Assigning staff to learn and become experts on the new Web 3.0 technologies early on will allow CIOs to have found a way to apply IT to enable the rest of the company to grow quicker, move faster, and do more.

Questions For You

What is the level of adoption of Web 2.0 technologies in  your department currently? Is anyone currently studying the new technologies that Web 3.0 will be built on? Have you created a planning committee to study how Web 3.0 abilities can be used to help your business? Leave me a comment and let me know what you are thinking.

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What We’ll Be Talking About Next Time

Politics is a fascinating subject and I’m sure that we all have our own opinions about the events that are currently unfolding over in Iran regarding their recent elections. However, this posting isn’t about the elections or who won. Rather it’s about the amazing flow of information that happened even in a heavily restricted / controlled environment. We live in the 21st Century and this unfolding story holds many lessons for modern CIOs…

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