Fractious Friday: News and Views From the Open Web

Inspired by my friend and colleague, the estimable Chris Heilmann, I've gone and done a link collection of a different genre than yesterday's Tech Thursday. In a fool's effort to keep up with thoughty dispatches from digital future dwellers and visioneers, here's my curation of some recent opinion and analysis posts from the tech blogosphere.

No better time than the final weeks of the tech event year, before the holiday partying starts and the tweets get less and less sober. Tech pundits are already making lists and polishing up their best prognostications:

Crowds and clouds from both sides now

Stephen O'Grady is an industry analyst and co-founder at RedMonk, the first analyst firm built on open source. He blogs at tecosystems, where he posted his 2010 predictions last week. O'Grady foresees that a glut of cloud APIs from competing vendors will create a crowded field, that 2010 will see more "democratization of big data," and more potential for new market opportunities built on data access.

Over at O'Reilly Radar, Nat Torkington responded Monday with a riff on O'Grady's post. In Turning Predictions into Opportunities, he identifies prospects for cloud brokers, seeders, and wranglers; imagines new tools and toys for collaboration; and describes platform skirmishes, big open datasets for fun and profit, marketplaces, and more.

War of the webs

This week saw a passionate and important trio of pieces on the big question of the open web: the struggle between equal and open access to all information objects on the internets, represented by the humble but near ubiquitous URI, against the recent momentum of Walled Garden 2.0, represented by the kingdom of Facebook, the threats of media warlords, and the weakened position of the browser address bar in the quest for "don't make me link" simplicity.

On Monday, Tim O'Reilly posted The War for the Web on O'Reilly Radar. Within hours, Chris Messina responded with The Death of the URL, an illustrated guide to the forces and devices that threaten the URL-y and unruly web. By close of day, pioneer blogger and avid New Yorker Anil Dash (who's heading to Expert Labs, an interesting new .gov project) had posted The Web in Danger, and by then the ripple effect was becoming a standing wave.

On Tuesday, there was an Oxford-style debate on Net neutrality in New York City (hat-tip to Charlie O'Donnell of nextny for the pointer). It was "televised." Watch it yourself to find out whose arguments moved the most votes to win the debate. (No spoilers here.)

Datasets et cetera

Some other stuff, not all of it brand new, that distracted me this week (in a good way):

Enjoy the weekend (and may the infinite monkeys of the open web prevail and thrive).

Havi Hoffman
Blog Editor
Yahoo Developer Network