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Tuesday, July 14, 2009

[Webadamus] First Delirium


How many times we read news and we think "I knew it was going to happen!"?
How many times we think about a revolutionary project and few days before we are ready to introduce it to the rest of the world somebody, often with more money invested, introduced the same concept but with famous name behind and taking all the glory over that idea?
Which developer interested about Web, reading about ex-imminent Internet Explorer 8, thought "come on, it's Microsoft, we all know they have no interest to create a truly advanced browser, 'cause Internet with more power inside a browser could make an Operating System partially obsolete"?
And who was truly surprised about Google OS announcement?
Webadamus will be a periodic Web Crystal Ball post here in WebReflection. It will talk about visions, thoughts, prototypes, and everything related to the future of the web and the most important thing is that everything will be just my imagination and nothing else. Are you laughing? Are you interested? It's just an experiment, let's see in few months or years, if I was right, are you with me? Let's start then with my first delirium!

Twitter: What's Next

The real potential of this famous service is almost unlimited, except for its 140 characters which, as limit, simply means they can manage more information than every other search engine. Gigabytes speaking, a tweet is meaningless while a web page size could be the equivalent of 100 tweets. And you know what? In a search engine what is important is the chosen title, the content, how much this site is paying to be in pole position, how much this site is spamming links around the net, etc etc ... In twitter, if search a subject selecting meaningful keywords, you will find only people truly interested in that website and for this reason, they re-twitted it. Waist of time? Almost zero, you search by people comments, you do not search by money and advertisement. Popular web sites? THey will be there ... crappy website? They will be unrated. But what is going on behind the tweet fuss?


It could become an integrated service, or it could become simply a third part one, related via API. The blacktwit will contain the classic black list of twitter users. As virus, there are robots or malicious users which only aim is to create fakes account in order to pump up replies, followers, and followed. These users will be able to follow us as well, studying our messages, and in the worst case scenario, spamming/scamming any sort of website. Being twitter the place where url are 80% masked by "url minifier web services", 30% of us will click that link and what's next does not matter, their mission has been completed. Thanks to blacktwit, our favorite twitter application will be clever enough to discard every message automatically or to ask us if we trust that user.


I personally posted a couple of "twitcodes", almost complete web programming scripts in less than 140 characters ... but this is not what I mean. twitcode will be a service which aim is to send and recieve instantly quick reviews and votes about a product. #801245632+ will mean that the product in the shop or supermarket with bar code 801245632 has been appreciated while "-" at the end will mean the buyer did not like it. "#801245632- no batteries included" will be a minus plus a comment. #801245632= will return number of users, and how many of them appreciated that product. Example: 10 users with that product, 6 appreciated it, the hash twitcode robot will reply 6/10 plus eventually a random comment, so if we do not like that comment we can tweet again and read the next. At the same time, this service will automatically have a database of interests and opinions in real time, something extremely important for any marketing purpose.

Private Services

As long as our twits are public we cannot use the hash too much. Here is where clever companies will create better robots able to manage private messages.
d twitdeal #insurance Grande Punto 1.3 Split
will be a direct message to user twitdeal that will instantly return the best option for that car while "d twitshop #price Asus 1101HA" will return the best price and the website for that product. It's all about fantasy and nothing else, but a quick service that does not require time neither thousands of pages to visit is a key for a quick future in this "everything in your hands" era.

Internet Explorer 9 Will Be Advanced

Microsoft, the most farsighted company during good old 90s, is loosing market share day after day. Slowly, slightly, but this is simply what is going on or, for sure, what everybody feels about this name. Innovation, does not exists, Silverlight is an Adobe clone with some extra feature already present in Google Chrome with some Chrome Plugin, a la O3D. People excited by hardware acceleration, should simply watch latest WebKit video about Snow Stack. Nothing new, not a single strategy able to bring innovation. A "new" search engine which development is distributed for each country for gosh knows which reason.
A browser which has desktop features like accelerators, and nothing else new enough for its purpose, surfing the Web, except some partially implemented feature a la Object.defineProperty, compatible 1/3 of what Firefox and Safari are able to do since ages with any kind of objects and via __defineProperty__ et similar. Latest news are about Office 2010 Online, something not even scheduled because it will never be innovative enough "thanks to missed Internet Explorer 8 features". If Silverlight will be a requirement, Office 2010 online will be, imho, a partial flop. Google has already done something better, and ages before. For these reasons, and many more, Microsoft at some point will realize that if next browser will not be better than next Operating System their market will fall down as never before. That is why Internet Explorer 9 will the probably the best browser so far, and not just a toy.

Google OS Will Fly High Later

Users are not ready yet ... Google manages big numbers but home users still want more than Web. Maybe because they do not know yet what Web has to offer, considering 50% or more are still using Internet Explorer. Maybe because they want do their business without internet, or maybe because they do not feel secure, thinking that their anti viruses beside probably some cracked software installed is more secure than an Operating System not affected by viruses and spyware at all (this theme will be in another Webadamus post).
Anyway, as somebody already said, minimalist Linux distributions with just Firefox already exist, and it is not only Ubuntu.
We all know that when there is Google name behind whatever market strategy, some how this will reach the goal.
We all know that as is for Netbook, first Google OS devices ( shall we call them Gbooks ? ) cannot cost more than 150 pounds.
How can people otherwise realize that they cannot live without? It will be a winning strategy, but it will take about 2 years before truly relevant results.

Passwords, As We Know, Will Disappears

This is the last delirium from Webadamus, but it is just a logic consequence about passwords. Let's analyze facts before!
More services we have, more our passwords are exposed. If a service lets us choose which password we prefer, most of the time will be the same for every service.
I am not even considering all those websites where the word "security" is meaningless, able to be cracked in a couple of sql injections or via browsers bugs!
How secret is a password? First of all, most common passwords are birthdays or anniversary dates. Sometimes these passwords are just names, swearing words, and 90% of the time these passwords contain only ASCII characters plus some number.
The most secret place for different passwords, or those generated automatically via a super SHA1024 unique hash algorithm, is usually a post it in the monitor. Somebody that feels half an hacker was clever enough to hide his password under the keyboard, still with a post-it. My bank account asked me to choose a password, and a super secret password, so I had to attach another post-it somewhere to digit one pwd first, and the second one after ... brilliant!!! The problem is intrinsic ... if I need money from a cache point, I have to hide numbers I need to digit so mistakes are more frequent and everything is in any case monitored 24/7 by the cash point camera, top right or directly over my head ... brilliant! In the supermarket I have rarely seen somebody remove the pad to digit the card pin number, while everybody is transverse and could potentially check it. It is common sense to do not look somebody doing it, but security is an utopia.
A lot of web users complained about this system of user/password which is absolutely boring and which does not improve security a single bit. This is the reason OpenID exists, but obviously we like choice so these kind of services are numerous ... another flop!
The concept is: please identify yourself to use this service, whatever service it is. In few years, we will all be a number, a product with a barcode, and we will all agree about this new system because everything will be more simple. The way to identify us? It could be a special universal key, card, passport, something we should check every second otherwise we will need to contact the unique number: 10
Telling that our ID is lost, and blocking in real-time every device connected into the central database ... sounds scary, but it is the only solution we have to make things more simple, unless we do not want to live wolverine style in a wood maiden house in the middle of nowhere (sounds like an adventure, isn't it?)

As Summary

This post is not that technical at all, it could be partially obvious and partially hilarious but this will be probably the last until the end of July or first days of August. I am going back in Italy for my sister wedding, friends, food, and hopefully sea under the sun ... so, what a better occasion to be insulted while I am far away from this PC with this USB temporary broadband? Have fun with Webadamus!

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