in The Web

The Next Web: Googley

Last week I visited The Next Web Conference which was a great experience. Great speakers, great atmosphere, great people and Wi-Fi that worked! Jeff Jarvis (what would Google do) was one of the speakers and his main message was: create a platform which enables others (your customers) to get success. Jeff Jarvis is
also known about Dell Hell and he also mentioned it shortly. Dell is one of the companies which successfully adapt to a new way of doing business (the Googley way?): “Your worst customer is your best friend. Your best customer is your partner. A company the size of Dell cannot survive on the ideas of two or three people”.

You can’t create a community

Mark Zuckerberg (Facebook’s CEO) is quoted by Jeff in relation to a request a big newspaper had for Mark Zuckerberg: “How do you create a community”, Mark’s answer was: “You don’t create a community. It’s already there. You help them do what they want to do”. He also points out what a real issue for most news media, they do not think distributed. He shows this by presenting the following quote: “If the news is that important, it will find me”, most papers do not go to
theur customers, but want to guide them to their own site. You should think distributed: “I’m not a mass, you’re not a mass – we are all individual”. He also add that you should manage abundance and not scarcity.

Record your life digitally

The other speaker which centered his talk around Google was Bradley Horowitz (VP for Google Apps which is formerly knows as Google NSA (not search and ads)). He talks about a big problem: currently it is possible to record your life digitally. However you do not have a second life to view the data you collected in your first life. How this information overload can be solved is by adding meta data. This can be done automatically, however as Bradley stated: software is not always
as good as humans are in a certain tasks, therefore a combination of man and machine is better than man versus machine. He also provides three elements to create meta data:

  • Don’t ignore the easy stuff: capture in anticipation of usage. (for example someone calendar, the time a picture was taken etc)
  • Use wetware and software. Wetware (the human body) provides a lot of signals if things are important and interesting.
  • Collective intelligence. Use aggregation of data, a huge spike of people at the same locations means that something is happening there.

Another big problem that everybody dies (eventually) and therefore time is an issue. Google tries to give back time to people, by using less of their time. Bradley says that this is the direction the next web should be solving. He advices everyone who is working in the Internet business to pay attention to this issue, it is a problem of today and it is problem of tomorrow.