23 February 2006

The Blogification of the Cyber Union

I suppose it was inevitable that Google would go from being regarded as quite the dog's danglies to being written off as a real dog's breakfast, but I think that people are rather missing the point of the latest service, Google Page Creator.

Despite what many think, Google is not about ultra-cool, Ajaxic, Javascripty, XMLifluous Web 2.0 mashups: the company just wants to make it as easy as possible for people to do things online. Because the easier it is, the more people will turn to Google to do these things - and the more the advertising revenue will follow.

Google's search engine is a case in point, and Blogger is another. As Blogger's home page explains, you can:

Create a blog in 3 easy steps: (1) Create an account (2) Name your blog (3) Choose a template

and then start typing.

Google Page Creator is just the same - you don't even have to choose a name, you just start typing into the Web page template. In other words, it has brought the blog's ease of use to the creation of Web sites.

This blogification of the Internet is a by-product of the extraordinary recent rise of blogs. As we know, new blogs are popping up every second (and old ones popping their clogs only slightly more slowly). This means that for many people, the blog is the new face of the Web. There is a certain poetic justice in this, since the original WorldWideWeb created by Tim Berners-Lee was a browser-editor, not simply a read-only application.

For many Net users, then, the grammar of the blog - the way you move round it and interact with its content - is replacing the older grammar of traditional Web pages. These still exist, but they are being shadowed and complemented by a new set of Web 2.0 pages - the blogs that are being bolted on by sites everywhere. They function as a kind of gloss explaining the old, rather incomprehensible language of Web 1.0 to the inhabitants of the brave new blogosphere.

Even books are being blogified. For example, Go It Alone!, by Bruce Judson, is freely available online, and supported by Google Ads alongside the text (like a blog) that is broken up into small post-like chunks. The only thing missing is the ability to leave comments, and I'm sure that future blogified books (bloks? blooks?) will offer this and many other blog-standard features.

Update: Seems that it's "blook" - and there's even a "Blooker Prize" - about which, more anon.


Anonymous said...

thats (B)logical

Glyn Moody said...

How true...