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What are Web 3.0 or 4.0? 'The New Information Age' is here   What are Web 3.0 or 4.0? 'The New Information Age' is here
By Salar Golestanian @ 11 Apr 2011 :: Article Rating
I saw a great blog about the 'New Information Age' by Vivek Wadha where he discusses the Reid Hoffman (LinkedIn Founder) quote "that if Web 1.0 involved go search, get data and some limited interactivity, and if Web 2.0 involves actual identities and real relationships, then Web 3.0 will be real identities producing massive amounts of data.” That this kind of data is exponential and this is bringing about lots of openings. So some questions came up like what are we to expect from web 3.0 or even has anyone understood web 3.0 or web 4.0?

Clearly the world owes a lot to the original Web 1.0 since it made it possible to make all past discoveries and informational data to do with science and sociology and history globally available and searchable. This has allowed the third world make amazing advances in the last couple of decades. It allowed China and India to come out of their dark moments and achieve + 10% growth year on year. 

However, Web 2.0 has been created to be much more about consumption of news and personal habits. It has helped us to identify what is good and what is not so good and to allow us to spend our spare time better and more productively. However, in reality it has done absolute opposite where more choice has forced us to spend more time on web. Now Reid Hoffman calls web 3.0 the extension of Web 2.0 and how LinkedIn, Myspace, Facebook, Twitter and others learn about our work history and social habits and act on them.

IMO we all agree that Web 2.0 is an interactive and social web facilitating collaboration between people. And also that this is distinct from the early web (Web 1.0) which was a static information dump where people read websites but rarely interacted with them. IMHO, I personally think web 3.0 is some way off at least 5 years away. Web 3.0 is required to be able to tackle the huge information overload we have today and that is not going to happen that soon. I think that Reid Hoffman's Web 3.0 is more like web 2.5.  

Currently, YouTube receives 24 hours of video every minute of the day. Last week YouTube announced YouTube Live. We can see that live broadcast programmes together with all other terrestrial Video Channels and all other sources growing around us will make the task of searching through all that data very difficult. Some of these data may not even be visible to Google. On top of the user uploaded data, we also have the government and Medical data on each person on the globe.  See Vivek Wadhwa video below as he makes some good observations on the amount of data we need to deal with.

So back to the main question of when will web 3.0 will come about? Many people believe that Web 3.0 may be just around the corner. But it took over ten years to make the transition from the original web 1.0 to Web 2.0, therefore, it may take just as long for the next fundamental change to reshape the web. Anyway, it is difficult to predict this. It may have to come first and get fully established before we can properly articulate what it is all about.

IMO Web 3.0 must be able to deal with the information overload that a lot of people are suffering from. Right now we spend way too long reading news from multiple sources. We already spend too long checking our favourite social networking sites. And perhaps spend a lot of time getting involved with some irrelevant social argument.  A lot of us also spend time writing daily blogs. So just imagine if 1-2 billion people around the globe all start to do their own daily blog or two per day. Just think the amount of information that will add to the ever growing global database. 

I think the web 3.0 has to be able to tackle the information overload in a more automated way. In web 2.0 we run around controlling who to listen to, what to read and what to buy etc... As this will grow we will have no option but to leave it to Artificial Intelligence devices and programmes or else we get no sleep. For example I see a scenario that I could theoretically have my own Avatars with AI that I myself configure to go and collect data from around the web on my behalf. Perhaps if it is bright enough, it will also negotiate on my behalf.

I may even have more than one avatar doing my work. Think of virtual me in some second life space that listens and browses the web during the night and in the morning only presents me with absolute essentials. If this avatar has enough cpu power then he can do a lot while I am sleep.

The Web 3.0 is more of a Semantic Web and therefore it should help this kind of technology. There is already a lot of work going into the idea of a semantic web, which is a web where all information is categorized and stored in such a way that a computer can understand it as well as a human. Many view this as first steps to combine artificial intelligence and the semantic web. The semantic web will teach the computer what the data means, and this will evolve into artificial intelligence that can utilize that information in some form or just filter it for us when we need it. 

Whilst we have been busy considering web 3.0, some people also have been talking about Web 4.0 before even we have a full understanding of web 3.0. They think that the ‘Second Life’ and ‘World of Warcraft’ type of environment that contains our avatars and yet communicates well with the traditional web is what it is. Although, I understand the concept since I have done some development in Second Life, yet I don’t see it as any different to what I consider web 3.0 to be. So to call it web 4.0 is a misconception. 

We also have the changing desktop and mobile device technology to consider. Mobile devices and Tablets are getting better and better. the latest iPad 2 and later in the year the Android tablets will be able to capture images, videos emails voice mails on hourly basis and add it to their own drive as well as upload them to social networking sites. Theoretically future version of these devices could continually add data of our environment, and experiences continuously to the web or local to be consumed if necessary. Things like Where we are, what we see, whether condition, who we are with and what is our next move and so on... 

I think I am getting seasick just thinking about the amount of data each person is likely to generate every hour. All this makes me think that web 3.0 does need to have Artificial Intelligence to just be able to keep up. No matter what, all this is likely to evolve into some interesting ways in which we interact with Internet in the future - Or is it that Internet will interact with us. And one final question remains - If You Die Tomorrow, Who Will Bury Your Data Six Feet Under? Oh well I give up! 

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About Scifiwood News Reviews and Blogs
These are various short and long News Articles, Reviews and Blogs by Salar Golestanian and employees of as well as contributors of The subject matter are mixed topics with Pure Science to Science Fiction as well as general topics on Web Trends, Technology, Software Engineering genre, or whatever subject that can affect the convergence of today's technology with Science Fiction in any shape or form.  These Blogs and Reviews don't have commercial or corporate aspiration, so they are indeed completely independent views. Some of these entries may be short and just link you to the actual news or site that can expand further on the subject of interest.  In Phase II we plan to incorporate some Social Networking applications within the portal.