Tuesday, March 13, 2007

Web 2.0 & BarCamp

Two recent studies reflect the increasing activity in technologies related to Web 2.0.


First, on any given day, seven percent of Web surfers in the United States engage in an activity known as tagging -- categorizing and labeling material they upload or find on the Web. Four times as many (28 percent) have tagged online content such as blog entries, photos, Web sites, video clips, and news articles. A complete review of this trend is available for download (pdf) from the Pew Internet & American Life Project.

Web 2.0 Survey

Second, companies are using Web 2.0 features to engage with their customers at an increasing pace, according to a survey completed in the United Kingdom. The results reveal the following percentages of companies that plan to implement respective Web 2.0 technologies in 2007:
  • apply user-generated content (UGC) to their websites (42%)
  • implement corporate blogs (35%)
  • implement videocasting (35%)
  • implement podcasting (33%)
This survey of more than 800 Internet and/or customer experience professionals was conducted by E-consultancy.com, a provider of information, training and events on best practice online marketing and e-commerce. A press release is available for review.


If you would like to learn more about these and other technology trends consider attending an unconference to be held this weekend at MIT in Cambridge. BarCamp is a series of technology gatherings coordinated around the world that are organized on the fly by attendees, for attendees.

A few of the topics that may be of interest to Web designers and developers include the following:
  • user interface (UI) design
  • programming languages
  • open source software
  • Ajax
  • RSS
Other topics may include:
  • the future of technology
  • startups
  • entrepreneurship
  • mobile computing
  • social software
  • hardware hacking
  • robotics
  • bioinformatics
There is no registration fee, however, participation is encouraged in the form of group discussions, demonstration of projects, or other participatory activities.

Details are available at the Boston page of the BarCamp wiki (pronounced BAH-camp), including dates, times, directions and registration instructions. Please note that if you are looking for alcohol at BarCamp you will be disappointed. Alcoholic beverages are not permitted on site.

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Monday, March 12, 2007

Boston Market -- March

Signs of a continuing strong job market persist. Here are three positive indicators:
  1. CEO Economic Outlook Index: Chief Executive Officers (CEOs) believe that the economy is growing at a comfortable pace. "The projections for sales, capital spending and employment all point to steady growth with no significant acceleration or slowing over the next six months."
  2. CEO High Tech Business Climate Survey: More than two thirds of CEOs of Massachusetts-based technology companies expect job expansion this year, a 13 point increase from 2006.
  3. Monster Employment Index: This index of online recruitment activity stands at its highest level since its inception more than three years ago. Opportunities for workers with design and creative backgrounds have increased mostly due to an increase in advertising, marketing and public relations opportunities.
According to Certification Magazine three of the fastest-growing segments of the information technology industry are as follows:
  • software publishing
  • Internet publishing and broadcasting
  • Internet service providers, Web search portals and data-processing services
Access Newbies: How to Break Into the IT Industry for hints and tips on getting started with a career in these areas.

The following categories (right-hand column) have been updated to reflect March statistics:
  • Average Salaries in Boston
  • Top 10 Web Technologies in Boston
Two of the Top 10 Web Technologies are JavaScript and Photoshop with 220 and 95 job listings, respectively. Training opportunities this month for these two skills, as well as, for MySQL (63) and PHP (60), include the following:
All classes begin Thursday, March 15 and are FREE, compliments of the HP Learning Center.

Also, for the first time since September, 2002 no single browser version commands a majority market share. In the fall of that year Internet Explorer 6 (IE6) was used by at least 50% of Web surfers. That percentage climbed steadily as IE6 replaced IE5 as the preferred Web browser. Now that IE7 is replacing IE6, IE6 usage should continue to fall in the coming months. This is good news for Web designers as IE7 provides better support for Web standards. Browser data is also presented in the right-hand column.

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