Careful the Widget Rabbit Hole

Jeremiah announced just now on Twitter that he (I assume "he" means "Forrester") will be hosting a widget roundtable tonight with Dave McClure (Facebook class at Stanford/Graphing Social Patterns) among others to discuss, label, and neatly categorize widgets, and essentially create a taxonomy of widgets that will "stand the test of time." WTF?? Really? Not only is this exercise more evidence of lexical masturbation in social media, but seems at once premature and outdated. I suppose I cannot rant too much yet, but my question is how is creating this system of widget categorization going to "stand the test of time?" I'm going to stop here because I'm going to see what they come up with before I go on any further.....

But some thoughts on my mind:

-How data portability & graph aggregation will affect the current hierarchy of container + widget

-RSS- Passive feeds (raw data from subscribing to various feeds, aggregated on your private, account facing side) vs. Filtered/edited/public feeds (edited & published-- and portable!-- versions of your passive/raw feeds)

-Attention data

Thoughts anyone?

Anyway, so here's what Jeremiah is promising:

What we’re going to do

Sadly, there’s no way to accurately describe widgets, measure them consistently, or categorize them. As a result, tonight, I’ll be hosting Dave McClure (who helps teach the Stanford Facebook class, and runs the Graphing Social Patterns conference), Justin Smith (of Inside Facebook), Rodney Rumford (of FaceReviews), and colleague Charlene Li over to Forrester in Foster City (picture of building) to have a discussion about the widget industry. We’re going to do a landscape segmentation of this growing industry, map it out, so we can better understand the market, and thereby help support/analyze it.

The goals of this exercise are to categorize widgets:

-Be completely self-containable with no overlap with each other
-Succinct and descriptive
-Every widget will cleanly fall into one of those (or more than)
-The labels will stand the test of time

Interested (and skeptical) as to what they come up with...


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