The Future Is All About Context: The Pragmatic Web

first_imgguest author 1 Tags:#Analysis#web 8 Best WordPress Hosting Solutions on the Market The semantic Web has long been heralded as the future of the Web. Proponents have said that Web experiences will some day become more meaningful and relevant based on the AI-esque computational power of natural-language processing (NLP) and structured data that is understandable by machines for interpretation.However, with the rise of the social Web, we see that what truly makes our online experiences meaningful is not necessarily the Web’s ability to approximate human language or to return search results with syntactical exactness. The value of the semantic Web will take time because the intelligent personal agents that are able to process this structured data still have a long way to go before becoming fully actualized.This guest post was written by Alisa Leonard-Hansen.Rather, meaningful and relevant experiences now are born out of the context of our identities and social graph: the pragmatics, or contextual meaning, of our online identities. My Web experience becomes more meaningful and relevant to me when it is layered with contextual social data based on my identity. This is the pragmatic Web.We need to better understand our identity as it begins to define our experience of the Web and the networked-enabled world we inhabit. Our online identity will increasingly be defined by three “pillars”: who I say I am, what I do and say, and who I connect to (and who connects to me).To clarify, our online identities are comprised primarily of three specific kinds of data:Explicit or prescriptive data (i.e. the data that I input about myself: name, age, occupation, etc.);Activity or behavioral data (i.e. what I do and say online);Relationship data (i.e. my social graph and what my connections say about me).If we consider the power of this pragmatic Web (a highly relevant and individualized Web experience based on the ubiquity of our identity data), we find that it not only impacts individual user experience, but that it opens up entirely new opportunities for business online. The future is not “business as usual.” Business models will be based on what Elias Bizannes of the Data Portability Project calls the “information value network-economic value,” derived from services that focus on activities with comparative advantage and that leverage free access to data.Consider this: as media companies scramble to identify new and innovative ways to advertise to the sea of nameless, pixeled users who graze through their content each day, a rich supply of highly valuable identity data lies just beneath the surface, left unmeasured and unmonetized.Facebook is nothing more than perhaps the largest single database of this kind of online identity data: explicit, activity and relationship data. With the development of Facebook Connect, which allows for the “open” exchange of Facebook user data between Facebook and third parties, Facebook could conceivably (and will) create an Facebook Connect ad network (read: data exchange), supplied by the valuable and highly targetable user identity data that is currently siloed on Facebook’s servers. This identity data within Facebook is what makes the activity in “social media” so valuable.But the centralization of identity data on one or two major networks (such as Facebook, Twitter and MySpace) won’t realize the vision of the pragmatic Web. So, how will the pragmatic Web come to be? How do we realize the power of a dynamic Web that is based on our identities? We do so by empowering individuals to access and control their identity across any site or service, through standards that enable data portability and open Web inter-operability. The resulting vision is that of a highly personalized, dynamic, relevant and remixable Web experience, yielding greater access to information through discovery, communication and collaboration. For enterprise, this could mean the rise of innovative new business models, based on data-driven value exchange.One final note on identity data as it relates to enterprise. As Bizannes points out, the value of this kind of identity data rests on the key factors of time and timeliness. Essentially, identity data is valuable only if it is recent. Facebook wouldn’t be able to sell your (permissions-enabled) data to advertisers if it used your explicit data from a year ago rather than from today. So, Bizannes argues that real-time “access” to someone’s identity matters most, and it’s no longer about data “capture.” Thus, as new business models arise out of monetizing permissions-enabled identity data, the value of the business models will depend on these entities having real-time access to the data.Guest author: Alisa Leonard-Hansen is a digital strategist and Social Media Evangelist at iCrossing, a leading global digital agency. She is also the Communications Chair for the Data Portability Project and blogs about the social Web on her blog, Follow her on Twitter @alisamleo. Why Tech Companies Need Simpler Terms of Servic…center_img A Web Developer’s New Best Friend is the AI Wai… Top Reasons to Go With Managed WordPress Hosting Related Posts last_img read more

Startups and the Challenge to Maintain Work-Life Balance

first_imgA Web Developer’s New Best Friend is the AI Wai… Image credits: Flickr user Chris Halderman audrey watters Why Tech Companies Need Simpler Terms of Servic… Maintaining a sensible work-life balance can be difficult for anyone. But if you’re launching your own company, the challenge is thousand-fold. Back in September, BankSimple founder Alex Payne wrote a post detailing some of his suggestions on how to “stay healthy and sane at a startup.”The post should be required reading for those that are facing what Payne describes as the “unrelenting stress and chaos of a fast-growing startup.” He points to several key areas in which he’s made adjustments in his life to help combat the chaos: exercise, diet, meditation, and time management.The latter is particularly important as it has less to do with being efficient and well-organized than it does about “protecting your sanity.” “From my perspective,” writes Payne, “time management is less a set of techniques than a mindset, albeit one assisted by social skills that allow you to defend your time and sanity. If you’re totally new to the idea of time management, this talk by ‘last lecture’ professor Randy Pausch will get you started. Once you’re set with keeping a calendar, working through a task list, and batching your phone and email sessions, the broader mindset of time management is acquired through experience. You’ll figure out what works for you, and where you need to draw boundaries.”How many of you need to take some of these lessons to heart? After all, statistics gleaned from ChubbyBrain‘s Funding Recommendation Engine reveal that almost 82% of you work more than 40 hours a week. Of course, that may not in itself be a sign that things are out-of-whack. But it should prompt the question: how do you work to stay sane as an entrepreneur? 8 Best WordPress Hosting Solutions on the Market Top Reasons to Go With Managed WordPress Hosting Related Posts Tags:#start#tips last_img read more

LEED Can Change, Part Three: The Education Program

first_imgHere’s where I start to get a bit giddy (I know that’s geeky). When I was teaching high school environmental science, I had my students create and carry out green building projects. Partially due to my excitement about the topic, I had some of the best results in that class of any unit that I taught. The basic model that I utilized for most of my major lessons was the same: I would verbally present the content, followed by a demonstration of the topic, and conclude with a lab or project so that the kids could experience the concept first-hand.The students came up with some really cool green building stuff, like a homemade microhydro system, a native species garden on campus, and a strawbale fence. The see-learn-do method worked well, especially when I was enthusiastic about the lesson. I was obviously excited by green building because I went on to build and renovate green for eight years.I’m giddy because the days of dry, myopic USGBC classes are soon to be over. The organization is rolling out a new curriculum to complement LEED Version 3 and the new LEED AP+ credentials. The content is shifting from dissecting each and every credit in the rating system to covering real-world green-building topics and utilizing case studies. The goals are to train attendees for project implementation of best practices, not simply to pass the LEED tests. With clearer learning paths, the course offerings will allow people to focus on the most appropriate area for their work — homes, schools, neighborhoods, etc.The USGBC will continue to offer classes, along with the chapters and the Education Providers. Education Providers will offer peer-reviewed customized courses. All the courses offered by the USGBC education network can be found at GreenBuild 365. Some courses are live webinars, some are online on demand, some are instructor led, or a combination of the above.There are three clear learning levels for the courses.100 Level: Awareness: for green building beginners to increase basic knowledge of sustainable building practices and LEED.200 Level: Understanding: for individuals with prior experience and knowledge with green building and LEED. These courses are designed to enhance and expand knowledge.300 Level: Application: for LEED implementation and green building problem solving.LEED V3 ScheduleHere’s some scheduling info. Keep in mind, these dates are subject to change.Available NowGreen Building Basics & LEED course (100 Level)LEED Core Concepts & Strategies course (200 Level)Green Building Operations and Maintenance: The LEED Implementation Process course (300 Level)March 31 2009Last date to register for the LEED NC AP examApril 2009LEED V3 roll outMay 2009Green Home Design & Construction course offeredLEED AP+ Operations & Maintenance credential/exam launchedLEED Green Associate credential/exam launchedJune 2009Last chance to take the LEED NC AP examLEED AP+ Homes credential/exam launchedJuly 2009Green Building Design & Construction course offeredGreen Interior Design & Construction course offeredAugust 2009New projects will be required to register for LEED 2009September 2009LEED AP+ Design & Construction credential/exam launchedLEED AP+ Interior Design & Construction launchedNovember 2009Green Neighborhood Planning & Development course offeredREGREEN course offeredLEED Implementation for Schools course offeredlast_img read more