Is the Web still the Web?

Posted by MTAA | Thu Jul 3rd 2008 5:25 p.m.


I found this article (admittedly having more to do with tech than art) somewhat interesting vis a vis our net art vs. (so-called) net art 2.0 discussions.

klik hare: Is the Web still the Web?

Of course since I'm such a rigid blockhead, if it's got "http://" tacked to the front it's the web in my book!


  • Pall Thayer | Thu Jul 3rd 2008 6:38 p.m.
    I'm with you. Sounds like a pretty silly question to me. If it's being served to me by a webserver, it's the web. It's like asking, "Is cheese still cheese after you've sliced it?"

    On the other hand, I read an interview with one of the NYTimes web developers recently that contained an interesting statement: (something along the lines of...) "The web isn't a bunch of pages anymore, it's a handful of pages and a lot of data."

    I think that statement says a lot more about web developments over the years. I thought Olia's Vernacular was pretty good too. Especially the part about the "home page" being replaced by MySpace and FaceBook pages. Users don't really have their own "page." Everyone is essentially using the same "page" but displaying different data on it.

    • eryk | Wed Jul 9th 2008 2:16 a.m.
      I've been looking at the Web in terms of why it fails for newspapers.

      A significant contributor to this is the fact that 65% of traffic to a newspaper comes from Web hits driven by Google, which links directly to one page on the site. In other words: 65% of traffic doesn't care about your "home page." Couple this with the growing trend (Japanese advertisements are already reflecting this) for companies and users to use "search terms" to find a page, rather than URLS, and you have a new understanding of what the Web is: The Web is actually just a bunch of content for Google users.

      The plus side: It's actually decentralized. So, the question is redundant. The Web isn't still the Web. The Web is finally becoming the Web.

      I think a JODI rule (oxymoron?) in the old days was to make sure you have a domain name. I wonder if that is still the punk-rock truth. I feel like making art on a variety of servers and hosts can be more interesting now. Just make sure you tag your metadata.
  • MTAA | Fri Jul 4th 2008 12:10 a.m.

    "Everyone is essentially using the same "page" but displaying different data on it."

    Damn! I find that incisive. If it's not, tell me why.
    • eryk | Wed Jul 9th 2008 2:24 a.m.
      I dunno. I started coding in Notepad, so I've always felt this way. I think it is a bit of overreach. I need to read it in context. I find it odd that everyone is quoting Olia all of a sudden, did she just write a book or something?
      • t.whid | Wed Jul 9th 2008 10:43 a.m.
        Hey Eryk,

        The idea is that back in the day when you were coding with Notepad, you needed to create the structure around your data. You wrote the <title> tag as well as what went inside it. You could call your "home page on the World Wide Web" whatever you wished. Now? If you're on Facebook it's "Facebook | Joe Schmoe." The individual only supplies their personal data, they don't control the structure of FB (in a meaningful way). In exchange for that control you're given more value in some ways.
        • eryk | Thu Jul 10th 2008 12:59 a.m.
          Oh, sure. That's the "We Are All Artists Now" thing. I totes agree.

          I remember thinking that about MySpace: "Here's a whole new internet." But it's sort of just like AOL Homepages or Geocities, only I think the audience has shifted. It's a cultural-penetration thing. I go to school with kids born in 19 fuckin' 88. You know? Those are the people driving this change.
  • t.whid | Wed Jul 9th 2008 10:37 a.m.

    Is the Web still the Web? No. LOL.

    The first web server:

    via boing boing
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