Christopher Allen has a good summary about the wiki application that can’t decide whether it’s called Jot or JotSpot but already raised $5.2M. Anyway, here’s the part I’m specifically interested in:
“[…] Kraus and Spencer discuss how JotSpot makes web application development more accessible, and expressed their desire to create a marketplace for small developers to create tools using JotSpot.”
This is a step in the right direction. As I was pointing out in my latest post, this stuff needs to be easier to go beyond just real developers, into the hands of power users, in a move similar to what VBA did for Office (and primarily Excel within the suite).
Meanwhile, one must ask Microsoft what they did with Ward Cunningham (who created wikis in the first place), now that they hired him. Since he’s busy writing papers as an Architect at the Platform Architecture Guidance (sounds like an EU or UN job), that pretty much rules out getting anywhere near an actual product, so JotWhatever might actually pull an E-Quill. Apparently OddPost was acquired by Yahoo for $29M, so this does work out once in a while. I can see what Six Apart is going to do with $10M, but $8.5M for Pluck (a company that publishes press releases in PDF no less), well, that feels a bit like a Backflip to me. Now a company that feels ripe for a juicy exit is Moreover. They’re ancient by this industry’s standards and they’re partnering all over the place as of lately. Plus this would fund another wave of web sites focused on the obsessions of young males, and there’s a scarcity there, right?
Now that you ask, do I have other comments about the whole web 2.0 hoopla? Well, it’s good that the cool stuff is finally coming to the forefront, and as bubble fodder it beats buying pet food online through aggregate purchasing circles. On the other hand, there’s a jarring Night of the Living Dead feel to it. I mean, doesn’t someone from Wired and The Standard hyping Mary Meeker feel like deja vu triggered by a bad case of food poisoning? What next, Henry Blodget coming to explain us the tremendous potential of web apps? OK, Meeker was offtopic and was actually talking about another, bigger bubble, namely China. Still, with these people chutzpah is never out of stock. This reminds me a bit of Jaruzelski trying to rebrand himself as a reformist democrat in the early nineties.
In any case, I intend to get rich this time, hopefully with better timing than 4/5 years ago! And if not this wave, the next, since we’re making a decent living and having fun in the meantime. This space is selling out again, whether we like it or not. “Web platform” is the new “B2C portal”, so get used to hear it from people who have no clue what they’re talking about. Myself, I quite like the bombastic sound of this entry’s title.
To close on something smarter and more useful (since competence is a commodity, I’ve decided to outsource it and focus on simulated jadedness, a phrase that doesn’t yet exist so I can easily own that space):
- Edd Dumbill is less cynical about Web 2.0
- Steven Webster has (technical) thoughts about the now open-source but still unspellable Laszlo vs. Macromedia Flex
- John E. Simpson writes the interesting Rainy Day XML (is online weather a platform? discuss.)
12/31/04 update: Adam Rifkin: Weblications.
I wasn’t at 2.0 (not cool enough, too much corporate stuff to do), but I just read about Jot and I want it bad. Blogged about it too, if you care to link.
Backflip? Way to name check! You’re old school.