Saturday, April 28, 2012

OpenWeb 04/28/2012 (p.m.)

  • Must read interview. Marc Andreessen explains his five big ideas, taking us from the beginning of the Web, into the Cloud and beyond. Great stuff!... (1) 1992 - Everyone Will Have the Web... (2) 1995 - The Browser will the Operating System... (3) 1999 - Web business will live in the Cloud... (4) 2004 - Everything will be Social... (5) 2009 - Software will Eat the Worldexcerpt:Technology is like water; it wants to find its level. So if you hook up your computer to a billion other computers, it just makes sense that a tremendous share of the resources you want to use—not only text or media but processing power too—will be located remotely. People tend to think of the web as a way to get information or perhaps as a place to carry out ecommerce. But really, the web is about accessing applications. Think of each website as an application, and every single click, every single interaction with that site, is an opportunity to be on the very latest version of that application. Once you start thinking in terms of networks, it just doesn’t make much sense to prefer local apps, with downloadable, installable code that needs to be constantly updated.

    “We could have built a social element into Mosaic. But back then the Internet was all about anonymity.”
    Anderson: Assuming you have enough bandwidth.

    Andreessen: That’s the very big if in this equation. If you have infinite network bandwidth, if you have an infinitely fast network, then this is what the technology wants. But we’re not yet in a world of infinite speed, so that’s why we have mobile apps and PC and Mac software on laptops and phones. That’s why there are still Xbox games on discs. That’s why everything isn’t in the cloud. But eventually the technology wants it all to be up there.

    Anderson: Back in 1995, Netscape began pursuing this vision by enabling the browser to do more.

    Andreessen: We knew that you would need some processing to stay on the computer, so we invented JavaScript. And then we also catalyzed Java, which enabled far more sophisticated applications in the network, by building support for Java into the browser. The basic idea, which remains in force today, is that you do some computation on the device, but you want the server application to be in control of that. And the whole process is completely invisible to the user.... The application model of the future is the web application model. The apps will live on the web. Mobile apps on platforms like iOS and Android are a temporary step along the way toward the full mobile web. Now, that temporary step may last for a very long time. Because the networks are still limited. But if you grant me the very big assumption that at some point we will have ubiquitous, high-speed wireless connectivity, then in time everything will end up back in the web model. Because the technology wants it to work that way...... LoudCloud was also called "Silicon Valley Power & Light". Tech companies could use LoudCloud as a utility for their applications. - a software power grid!... I have another theory that I call the missing campus puzzle. When you drive down highway 101 through Silicon Valley, you pass the Oracle campus and then the Google campus and then the Cisco campus. And some people think, wow, they’re so big. But what I think is, I’ve been driving for close to an hour—why haven’t I passed a hundred more campuses? Why is there all this open space?Anderson: What’s your answer?Andreessen: Think about what it has meant to build a primary technology company up until now. In order to harness a large enough market, to attract the right kind of technical talent, to pay them adequately, to grow the company to critical mass—until now that’s only been possible with companies that are providing tools for all sectors, not just specific sectors. Technology has been just a slice of the economy. We’ve been making the building blocks to get us to today, when technology is poised to remake the whole economy.Anderson: What categories are next?Andreessen: The next stops, I believe, are education, financial services, health care, and then ultimately government—the huge swaths of the economy that historically have not been addressable by technology, that haven’t been amenable to the entrance of Silicon Valley-style software companies. But increasingly I think they’re going to be.Anderson: Today, so much software is instantiated in hardware—Apple being a great example. As software “eats the world,” do you think that we’ll see fewer companies like Apple that deliver their revolutionary software in the form of shiny objects?So when we look at Lytro and we look at Jawbone, we see software expressed as hardware—highly specialized hardware that will be hard to clone...... When Milton Friedman was asked about this kind of thing, he said: Human wants and needs are infinite, and so there will always be new industries, there will always be new professions. This is the great sweep of economic history. When the vast majority of the workforce was in agriculture, it was impossible to imagine what all those people would do if they didn’t have agricultural jobs. Then a hundred years later the vast majority of the workforce was in industrial jobs, and we were similarly blind: It was impossible to imagine what workers would do without those jobs. Now the majority are in information jobs. If the computers get smart enough, then what? I’ll tell you: The then what is whatever we invent next.

    Tags: Marc-Andreessen

Posted from Diigo. The rest of Open Web group favorite links are here.

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