The defense sector is all a-Twitter about this and other social media platforms, with many organizations restricting how and if their employees can access the tools during working hours.
One of the ironies of Web 2.0 applications is that the number of them increases on a daily basis. Designed to track Web 2.0 applications and services, Listio is a directory and product review site. Visitors can browse and rate a selection of Web 2.0 applications. Each application is profiled with a link to its home page
Sometimes a user might need an immediate answer to a question or a definition of a term. The Lexisum home page has a simple interface consisting of several boxes. Entering a term such as "bandwidth" causes the site's search engine to scour Wikipedia sites for an answer. Each definition is studded with hyperlinks to more detailed articles and related topics.
The goal of reQall is to serve as a memory tool. The site collects and aggregates personal data. Users can access the site through a variety of methods, such as text from a handheld or desktop computer or voice from a telephone. The site will translate voice messages into text and store the data. Users with iPhones or Web access can quickly enter action items and clip and remember items on the home page. ReQall can contain anything from personal notes to contact lists and photographs.
Teamspinner allows teams to create custom environments for their projects. Users can add Wiki text, lists, discussions and files. Team members can also invite others as members or observers and track any changes via RSS feeds. Users should note that this tool is currently in the beta stage. A link allows bugs and suggestions to be reported to the tool's designers.
A massive directory of Web 2.0 applications and services, Go2Web20.net contains 2,390 site logos as of mid-May. The primary interface for Go2Web20.net is its main page, which lists all of the participating services. By moving a cursor over each site, a quick outline of the service is provided. Clicking on a logo calls up a more detailed description of the service and a URL link to the site. The assembled pages cover a range of interests and subjects, from music sharing sites to professional development and advancement pages.
Twitter is a Web-based service is designed to keep people in touch with friends, family and co-workers through quick, short and frequent messages. Unlike e-mail or blogging, Twitter focuses on short updates throughout the day. Users can post brief updates, limited to 140 characters, from their desktop, personal digital assistants or cell phones. Business users can use the site to keep updated with colleagues working on a project, for example.
Web 2.0 users beware: Social networking technologies may be fun and useful, but the one thing they are not is secure. For all the benefits it offers, the Web 2.0 world is still pretty rowdy, and the risk to enterprises is very serious. Experts warn that capabilities such as social networking and collaborative content sites are a wide-open window to hackers who are using their mega-networking appeal to spread malware and crack into systems. Unless organizations take precautions, not only do they put themselves at risk, but they also may inadvertently become members of a ring of thieves whose goal is to get their virtual hands on information, which equals riches.
Social networking and other Web 2.0 capabilities are creating new avenues for commerce by facilitating communication inside the corporate structure and extending collaboration beyond company walls. Key to making the most out of new technology, however, is determining corporate goals before throwing a new tool into the mix. When chosen and applied judiciously, nearly every Web 2.0 weapon—from del.icio.us to wikis—can play meaningful and profitable roles within any company.
U.S. government agencies recognize the effect that Web 2.0 technologies are having on society, and some are eagerly incorporating them into their operations. However, unlike previous eras in which government embraced new capabilities routinely, today’s efforts go beyond merely adapting to innovative technologies. The Web 2.0 revolution is impelling cultural change faster and to a greater degree than ever experienced in recorded history, and democracies that answer to their populaces already are feeling the effects of that change—and ignore those effects at their own risk.
Exuberance tempered with caution describes the U.S. military’s current outlook about deploying Web 2.0 technologies. The services’ information technology leaders as well as the U.S. Defense Department recognize the multitude of benefits the capabilities offer warfighters from the tactical through the strategic levels. However, concern about the security risks in what could be termed the Wild West of the World Wide Web is currently hampering the services’ ability to take full advantage of promising properties in the Web 2.0 landscape.
The Web 2.0 revolution is as much about business culture as it is about social networking sites such as MySpace, Facebook, Second Life and LinkedIn or collaborative content sites such as Wikipedia. Faced with a growing number of employees from the Gen X or Gen Y age groups, baby boomer executives are learning to let go of traditional thinking while simultaneously trying to discover the best way to adopt new capabilities without losing all control. As a result, organizations find themselves turning not only to technology providers but also to firms that specialize in integration.