I’ve been looking into the web, trying to figure out what it’s going to look like in a few years. I’m still looking at various scopes, but I decided to analyze some of the more generalized markets that we have right now. You’re not going to find anything new here, just 5 areas of the web we will see changes in, and the coming monetization of the web.
Infrastructure = Hosting & ISP’s
Data Resources = Data
Data Access & Storage Protocols = API’s
Services = Applications that modify the Data through use of API’s to provide a value
Directories = Provide the ability to find what you’re looking for quite rapidly, can be pseudo-static or dynamic.
Each of these different markets can and most likely will be monetized within the coming years, most likely coming from the users themselves. Hosting & ISP’s have already done it. Directories that aren’t fully dynamic can do it with advertising, and even some of the dynamic real-time directories will be able to use the advertising model. The Data & DASP’s will be subsidized, for the most part, by the initial service’s charges, or possibly the service will be subsidized by external developers paying for access to the data, or just the data itself.
The benefits we will see is that our data is more stable, at least in the sense that the company isn’t going to go belly up, services should be better, and there will be more positions, hopefully. We all walked around expecting everything to be free, when we should have been asking how can we help make more services. Maybe the free world was just the accelerant for innovation to get the initial business models developed, promote an open generation, and allow everyone a shot at getting their ideas out there, it’s easier to pick up users, for a simple service, when you’re not charging them after all. The problem that we had with free is that we all became so jaded by it.
Focus on one of these markets and how you can change it. Each one is easily branched into another, you can traverse up or down that list from where you started. Look at Google, they exist in each of these markets. They started with a DASP that collected vast amounts of Data, then used initially used this data to create a Directory Service, along with quite a few other services, one of which is AppEngine which exists to share their infrastructure.
As the web evolves we’ll see these markets split and converge on each other time and time again, we may even see a new general market pop up. Just as an example of the splitting a market look at the services, there are so many sub-markets that exist within it that it would be hard to categorize them. For an example of convergence you just have to look at the various projects being developed to better connect the web, one of the most recent one’s to pop into my radar is Salmon, which is working to pull comments back to the original source and re-disperse them with the source feeds. Time to watch the ebb and flow, and maybe enter one or more of these markets.