SAN FRANCISCO--What Google did with Gmail in conventional browsers five years ago it is expecting to do again with a new mobile version of its Web-based e-mail service.
Vic Gundotra, who leads Google's mobile software and developer relations efforts, showed off the Web application "technical prototype" Friday in an onstage interview here at the Web 2.0 Expo. Google offers Gmail applications that run natively on BlackBerry and Android , but the company clearly has high hopes for a Web-based version as well.
Building a Web interface means Google can reach more phones more easily, Gundotra … Read more
Nokia Messaging is a free, downloadable application that lets you access up to 10 personal e-mail accounts on a Nokia device, all of which organized under a single icon. The app also supports Yahoo, Gmail, and AOL Mail, among others.
In addition, the Hotmail integration, the company also said it will add Nokia Messaging support to the Nokia 5800 XpressMusic starting in May. Currently, the app is available on 20 Nokia models … Read more
The mini-Demo conference at the Web 2.0 Expo is the Launch Pad, where five start-up companies pitched to a small panel of experts (Marshall Kirkpatrick of ReadWriteWeb, Matt Marshall of VentureBeat, and Anand Iyer of Microsoft) and a moderate audience spread out across a very large hall. Of the five pitches, I found four very smart (read the summaries to figure out which one didn't get my nod) and of those, one appeared to be a genuinely new idea. That would be the first company in this run-down. (The audience, though, liked Nitobi the best.)
SAN FRANCISCO--Are video games really all about feeding your ego? Maybe, suggested legendary game designer Will Wright in a keynote interview at the Web 2.0 Expo on Thursday morning.
"Most people are very narcissistic," said Electronic Arts' Wright, creator of the Sim City and Sims franchises and now last year's avant-garde Spore, onstage with Federated Media's John Battelle. "The more you can make the game about that person, the more interested, the more emotionally involved they will get."
Advancements in technology have made it possible for the customization craze of the social-networking world … Read more
SAN FRANCISCO--A conference about Silicon Valley innovation invariably will feature at least one talk about how the old order of American business is hopelessly broken and needs a tech-savvy recharge. At this year's Web 2.0 Expo here, it was author Douglas Rushkoff's "How the Web Ate The Economy, And Why This Is Good For Everyone."
It was a tantalizing title. But most of Rushkoff's talk wasn't about the Web or how it can help steer the world out of a global financial crisis. He focused instead on how the idea of "currency" as we know it, not to mention the notion of the "corporation," is profoundly archaic and that with the market meltdown, we have a golden opportunity to get rid of them altogether.
"We can make pretty much everything great," said Rushkoff, whose book "Life Inc." is coming out in early June, "and if we don't, they will recover and make us miserable for another few centuries."
Corporations and monetary systems, he said, are vestiges of the late Middle Ages when kings and aristocrats were struggling to exert some kind of authority over the fast-rising mercantile class and to rein in independent currencies before they became too powerful. "It was against the law to create value through one another. You had to do it through a corporation," Rushkoff explained. "That was what corporations were for. Centralized currency came up because most towns in late Middle Ages Europe had their own currencies...they had so much extra money they built cathedrals."
(Tip: if you want to make something sound really awful and backwards, talk about how it has roots in kings and feudalism.)… Read more
SAN FRANCISCO--Tom Foremski of Silicon Valley Watcher suggests that "you aren't are missing anything if you couldn't make it" to Web 2.0 Expo. That may be a bit strong, but one thing seemed to be almost entirely missing from the show: money.
Yes, there were plenty of sponsors spending money on the conference. There just wasn't much emphasis in the conference program itself on actually making Web 2.0 profitable for more than just Google, despite an entire track dedicated to Web 2.0 business models.
Updated at 10:10 p.m. PDT to correct amount spent on R&D. The correct figure is $9 billion. Also, updated at 9:10 a.m. PDT on April 2 to correct the spelling of Stephen Elop's first name.
During an on-stage chat on Wednesday at the Web 2.0 Expo, Stephen Elop, Microsoft's president of the business division, defended himself against conference instigator Tim O'Reilly's challenge that Microsoft's traditional office applications aren't making, and may not be able to make, a successful transition to the Web.
Elop, a slick spokesman for … Read more
Palm is ready to let the world get its hands on the software development kit for WebOS, its next-generation mobile operating system.
At the Web 2.0 Expo on Wednesday, Palm's Michael Abbott announced that the company is ready to let developers start playing with its Mojo SDK, until now restricted to a few dozen select invitees.
He also showed how developers can tap into the messaging stream at the bottom of a Palm Pre using a Palm-hosted notifications service, and provided a link to Palm's past with the announcement of an emulator that will let WebOS users … Read more
SAN FRANCISCO--The floor of the exposition hall at this year's Web 2.0 Expo has been a little bit lethargic, to say the least. "It's a lot emptier than last year," said one representative from a social gaming company that had set up a booth. "I think the 'Web 2.0' thing has become a bit of a stigma."
Indeed, these days the term goes hand-in-hand with broken business models and overblown expectations, as much as it does with innovation. With the economy in shambles, attendance at the semiannual conference is down. The show … Read more