Dirk Knemeyer

Evolution of the web

Evolution of the web, November 17, 2004

A short comment contextualizing the prediction could go right here

The evolution of new technologies

There is a basic pattern that all new technologies and industries in a capitalist economy follow:

1. Innovative new technology is introduced.

2. Market demand results in much—often poor—copying and repurposing of that technology.

3. Market backlash to crowded and variable product offerings results in broad optimization of the category.

4. Market boredom with optimized and standardized products results in demand for innovation.

5. Depending on the size and prevalence of the technology, steps 2-4 may repeat.

6. Next-generation innovation leads to the creation of new technologies and products that ultimately render obsolete the original innovative new technology.

This Web follows this same pattern. Right now, the Web is in the process of gently shifting from step 3—usability culture—into step 4. Most Web users, designers and business professionals have not noticed this change happening, much less thought about whether they want or need it.