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The (im)Mobility of Web 2.0 Apps 106

Posted by Zonk
from the get-on-and-get-out dept.
narramissic writes "So many Web 2.0 apps seem like a natural fit for use on mobile phones -- more so, in fact, than the PCs they were written for. Take for example, Google maps or Flickr or any of the myriad social networking sites. Frankly, I wonder why anyone would even want to use them while sitting at a desk. And yet the reality of using those apps on cell phones is solidly disappointing because of the inherent constraints of mobile phones and networks. This article gets deeper into the ups and downs of reworking Web 2.0 apps for use on mobile phones."
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The (im)Mobility of Web 2.0 Apps

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  • by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday October 18, 2006 @04:19PM (#16491517)
    Is because I have a huge ass screen and a very fast connection. My phone can't match either of those.
    • by MoxFulder (159829)
      Who modded this "Troll"??? The guy made a totally valid point... sheesh.
      • by Denney (947351)
        I have been seeing this more and more on Slashdot lately. Perfectly valid comments, which used to modded Insightful, are now being modded either Offtopic or Troll. The problem has become worse in the last couple of weeks.
        • by walt-sjc (145127)
          OK, I have mod points at the moment but am posting instead... This is why meta-moderation exists and why it is important. Meta-mod frequently and the bad moderators won't get points as often.
          • by Bozdune (68800)
            OK, I have mod points at the moment but am posting instead... This is why meta-moderation exists and why it is important. Meta-mod frequently and the bad moderators won't get points as often.

            If I could meta-moderate ON A SPECIFIC ARTICLE, then I'd agree. But instead I get a random sampling of shit that I'm not qualified to meta-moderate on, because I didn't read the thread originally. In order to do a good job meta-moderating, you have to be into the thread in a big way. How can you decide whether someth
            • I don't think this is gonna change due to tagging. I get the impression (Though will happily acknowledge evidence to the contrary) that the tag system will be expanded to comments, and much like the "fud"/"notfud" tags for articles, a set of tags such as "troll", "lame", "offtopic", "useful", "interesting" alongside their opposites ("notlame", "notuseful") will be implemented in place of traditional moderation. Knowing Slash's penchant for working obscure statistics into things, I think it quite feasable th
            • by jZnat (793348) *
              Click the "See Context" link to read the thread. Problem solved.

              Lately I've been getting at least 1 unfair flamebait/troll mod every time I M2, so I'm doing my part by marking them as such.
              • by Bozdune (68800)
                I know how to read the original thread. The point is, I don't have time to read threads I don't care about, so asking me to moderate on them is pointless. I can, however, moderate on what I've already read, or am reading currently.
      • SlashDot is becoming less effective because:
        • People are more concerned about getting mod points that making relevant discussion
        • The main discussion on most points is how many or what mod points were rewarded.

        Just get rid of the mod points and let's get on with it already.
    • by gzerphey (1006177)
      Well... it could... [radiobremen.de] I'm just not ready to join the Borg yet!!
    • Or alternatively, because I have a printer available from my desktop machine, and can print out the directions on dead trees for later!
      • Nice timing.

        I've been using Mapquest since it came out. It's really pretty good. I tried it a few days ago and it's been web 2.0'ized and no longer works on my W98 box.

        Stop laughing, all I want windows to do is launch Opera and SSH and nothing more, and on a dial up line out here in the (dialup only) countryside it makes more sense than XP that can't update itself fast enough before getting trashed.

        Mapquest will no longer show me a map as their Web 2.0 nonsense doesn't work in the latest Opera (it should) o
        • Graphical submit buttons should always have a 'title' attribute, that way, some text will appear before the image loads.

          I hope this becomes mandatory in XHTML1.2 (or whatever comes next). Not that half the world validate their HTML...
    • by jsebrech (525647)
      Is because I have a huge ass screen and a very fast connection. My phone can't match either of those.

      Try map24 mobile, it is quite usable as a mobile mapping solution, with route planning, 3D 3rd person perspective while following a route and access to the bookmarks you make in the desktop version. Quite convenient when you need to know how to get from A to B, and you lack a map. It's definitely a lot better than the java version of google maps.
    • Well maybe one of these [bangladeshinfo.com] will suit...

      or one of these [tribuneindia.com]
  • by yagu (721525) * <yayagu@@@gmail...com> on Wednesday October 18, 2006 @04:19PM (#16491537) Journal

    The article seems to carry as a given that layering 2.0 (fill in your favorite definition of what the really is) into the mobile architectures. If I were to consider all of the times I've been frustrated with mobile web experiences, and there have been many, I'd say 99.9% of my frustration has been and continues to be real estate, and screen quality.

    Yeah, there may have been a couple of times where I'd wish for faster refresh, but when all is said and done, I'm going crazy trying to establish any kind of gestalt with the mobile web experience. Heck, I'd even say I'd prefer simple text interaction -- not an easy assignment for developers required to sandwich ads into the presentation space.

    I know there are some who say we can solve this darned form factor thingy -- I don't think it's soluble. At some point, smaller is just too small, no matter the "quality" of that smallness. Taken to a ridiculous extreme, technology may someday be capable of squeezing a phone, camera, video, music, tv, all onto something the size of the head of a pin. So?

    The article mentions "ShoZu", a mobile client that lets mobile users update flickr photos (adding comments)... changing the experience from a 165 second-71.4kb ordeal to a 16 second-3.25kb ordeal. Yeah, the improvement is significant, but I'm not meeting many people who: find adding comments to flickr photos so urgent they MUST do so on their phones; nor are much inclined to do so given the capability.

    (personal anecdote: The whole family replaced/upgraded cell phones about four months ago. It was the first time we'd had phones with the builtin cameras -- something I'd never cared about or wanted. However it was intriguing, and fun -- the whole family took pics, swapped pictures and videos, created ringtones, created personalized wallpapers, for one day! Four months later, we all still have the same wall papers we created that day, none of us has sent a single other picture to each other. It's a novelty -- it wears off -- fast!)

    • by kfg (145172)
      I don't think it's soluble. At some point, smaller is just too small. . .

      Solution: Make it bigger.

      KFG
    • by arivanov (12034)
      Ahem. Even a high end phone still sucks rotten eggz as far as any web browsing experience is concerned. Do we like it or not, but we are indoctrinated from the early childhood with the 60+ symbols per line 60+ lines per page format. 10+ years of books during our childhood indoctrinate us to expect a certain quantity of information per view and having much less then that really pisses us off. As a result all attempts to push information at us via mobile end up in the same place as your family pictures - in
    • by maxume (22995)
      Smaller is too small until they can stick a computer on a contact lense, at which point smaller is awesome. Plenty of folk will whine about them being uncomfortable, but I don't care about them.

      Add in an earbud, and make sure the contact can see so that you can have gesture based interaction -- then I get to wander around talking to myself *and* waving my hands around in a strange manner.
    • I'm curious about how many people use cellphone plans that charge by the bit nowadays. My T-Mobile Sidekick has had unlimited data for years now. I think even Verizon gives you unlimited data, albiet for a horrible price, around $ 90 a month if I recall correctly.

      But I think anyone interested in pushing bits down their cellphone should get an unlimited plan and forget about per-byte charges.

      That being said, I really want to give my social networking site [amazing.com] a cellphone version, but Google ads are Javascript
  • Gee... (Score:4, Insightful)

    by creimer (824291) on Wednesday October 18, 2006 @04:24PM (#16491611) Homepage
    The more I see "Web 2.0" (TM) on Slashdot, the more I think it might be real.
  • by Rachel Lucid (964267) on Wednesday October 18, 2006 @04:25PM (#16491629) Homepage Journal
    Phones, Blackberries, PDAs, and even (my personal favorite) the Nintendo DS are all restricted by a small number of buttons and tiny screen real estate. Ergo, they often need overhauls of their entire front end to accomodate touch-screens, keypads, and voice commands, AND on top of all that they need their networking kicked around a little as well to account for the possiblity of sucky/no service.

    The more that laptops and wi-fi become ubiquitous, the less that people will care about using other devices for more than what they WANT to use them for. Yes, having Google Earth and an audio version of Wikipedia would rock. But I don't see it happening.
    • Another problem with voice activation, and audio versions, is privacy, and hearing loss. If everyone goes to using microphones and earphones all day long, we'll probably see a rise in both people talking to themselves/phones, and losing their hearing at a young age.
    • by ejd3 (963550)
      Wikipedia has some articles that you can download a "spoken article" .ogg file to listen to the article. This certainly isn't on the majority of articles but the possibility exists that a mobile phone user would be able to listen to these files. I was able to play .ogg files on my Nokia 6600 so all you would need to do is download the "spoken article." Sounds like a big hassle but I'm sure that this process could be streamlined with cheaper wireless bandwidth and more acceptance of the .ogg format.
  • Google Maps Mobile (Score:5, Informative)

    by eggz128 (447435) on Wednesday October 18, 2006 @04:25PM (#16491635)
    Nuff said [google.com]
    • Five Minute Rule (Score:3, Informative)

      by Kadin2048 (468275)
      I've used Google Maps on my phone (Motorola Razr, with TMobile service) and think it's pretty decent. It's about the only third-party application I've ever used on a phone, so I guess I don't have much of a basis for comparison, but it's useful.

      The phone's directional buttons work fine to scroll the map or pointer around, and although entering addresses to get directions is a pain, it's not intolerably bad. Overall it was handy enough that I'm definitely going to keep it on my phone.

      My main complaint with i
      • by afidel (530433)
        Google Maps Mobile on my Blackberry 7290 with GPRS (2.5G) is awsome, one of the best features is that I can lookup a restaurant, call for reservations, then get turn by turn directions to the place! My friend tried GMM on his new Windows Mobile 5.0 phone and he decided he will be loading Microsoft Pocket Streets 2005 with the entire US basemap since his 2GB flash card can hold the entire thing and he can download addons over the air for specific cities so it's faster than grabbing jpeg's over the air.
      • by Kardall (886095)
        Ok well as much as it doesn't work, the Razr DOES have an EvDO solution. I have one on Telus Mobility in Canada. It's quite fast compared to the 1x/EDGE and whatever else is out there. It's about 300kbps on average from what I can tell. It loads good in about a second, globe and mail shows up in about 20 seconds minus a bunch of crap they put on their site... Worst thing is the articles subject. Pages look like garbage. However on my Blackberry 7130e they don't look bad. I got an email about gamespy's re
        • Huh ... I guess that must be only on the CDMA phone models; I don't think that any of the Razr GSM models have 3G capability. At least I'm pretty sure mine doesn't; perhaps there are newer models of ones that do.

          Frankly the thought of switching back to CDMA just makes me want to vomit; I crawled out of the Verizon dungeon into the light which is GSM ("wait...you mean I can switch providers and not buy a new phone? Hallelujah!"), and I am never going back there.

          If there's a GSM Razr that does high-speed data
          • by Kardall (886095)
            The Razr V3 or V3M or whatever it is on Rogers Canada is GSM/GPRS and it does EDGE.

            And off topic, but... switching providers in Canada = buying different phones anyway. There is no provider in Canada even across the 3 or so CDMA providers in this great nation, that allow you to freely sign a contract with an existing phone.

            I think Bell Mobility in the East allows you to add a foreign ESN onto their system, but there is some sort of fee for it. Rogers is the only one that I know of that is GSM unless FID

    • by Tancred (3904)
      Works great on my unlocked Nokia E61 [nokia.com]. Great screen, qwerty keyboard, decent joystick, quad-band GSM, EDGE, 3G, WiFi and Bluetooth. Normal (non-WAP) browsing is quite usable too. More 3G coverage would be nice though.
  • worthless (Score:4, Insightful)

    by crayz (1056) on Wednesday October 18, 2006 @04:26PM (#16491643) Homepage
    Because the application is built on Ajax, like many other Web 2.0 services, it pushes data out to the client device in order to speed up future user requests

    Does this author understand Ajax or Google Maps *at all*? Why bother reading this tripe?
  • ... video demonstration here [mytreo.net]
  • Browser not needed? (Score:5, Interesting)

    by OakDragon (885217) on Wednesday October 18, 2006 @04:31PM (#16491723) Journal

    From TFA:

    One way that Web 2.0 companies can similarly adjust their services for mobile devices is by relying less on browser-based applications and more on small software clients that users can download onto their phones. "The browser will fade into the background," said Wood.

    Browsers on the desktop have evolved along the lines of "do everything" applications, which is why the AJAX/Web 2.0 stuff kind of works in them. Lets face it, if you writing an application from scratch to do match the functionality of Google maps, say, you wouldn't start with a browser. Google maps is impressive because it actually works in a browser!

    For Web 2.0 sites, 'lite' custom apps may be just the answer.

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by uradu (10768)
      I'm quite sure I don't agree with that point in the article. The implication is that the "browser-basedness" of AJAX apps is what makes them unsuitable for phones, because somehow the mere fact of running inside a browser adds a lot of communications overhead--hence the solution to have custom apps on the phone. I think that's nonsense, because the amount of data travelling across the network and/or being cached on the client is mostly dependent on the design of the application. The presentation markup pay
      • by 0xdeadbeef (28836)
        Some would argue that running an application in a browser is nonsense. We've had UI toolkits and scripting languages for over three decades, so why did we standardize on Javascript and HTML? It is clearly not the best solution, but it wins because the web browser is ubiquitous and stable.

        Mobile devices present unique user interface challenges and usage scenarios that go far beyond what we can do sitting at a desk. Let's not pidgeon-hole ourselves in the AJAX ghetto before we've barely gotten started.
        • by uradu (10768)
          > it wins because the web browser is ubiquitous and stable.

          Bingo!

          > Let's not pidgeon-hole ourselves in the AJAX ghetto before we've barely gotten started.

          We got started a LONG time ago, just because a new class of device has become capable of running a browser doesn't automatically mean we have to develop a whole new application infrastructure. No, HTML+JS are not ideal, but they're here and they're the most widespread distributed application API in history, so that's what we use. Besides, the weak li
    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      by Firehed (942385)
      If you want the largest audience possible, you write for a browser. Not because there are so many people on the internet, but because browser-based apps and AJAX are cross-platform. Sure, Mac and Linux make up under ten percent or so of the computer market share, but they also tend to be MUCH more computer-literate, and are a hell of a lot more likely to be early adopters of stuff like this. Recoding my app for three different OSes would be enough of a pain in the ass - I don't even want to consider tryi
      • by geekoid (135745)
        thep point of getting a Mac is that you DON"T have to be computer literate.

        "Recoding my app for three different OSes would be enough of a pain in the ass"

        if you have to recode your complete app for every OS, then you need to rethink your app architcture.

        I have written apps that run on Windows, Solaris, and Linux.
        All I had to do was compile it on the individule OS.
        • by Firehed (942385)
          Macs: yes, but most Mac users tend to be smarter than Windows users, at least in my experience. While not always the case, smarter people tend to be more computer-literate.

          And yes, of course recording and recompiling are two different things. But do you really want to have to recompile a hundred different times and then manage each of those compilations? You won't even have finished compiling version 1.2.3 on all the phones by the time 1.2.4 is ready, and then you have to start over again.
          • by @madeus (24818)
            And yes, of course recording and recompiling are two different things. But do you really want to have to recompile a hundred different times and then manage each of those compilations? You won't even have finished compiling version 1.2.3 on all the phones by the time 1.2.4 is ready, and then you have to start over again.

            I for one totally agree writing for phones (either traditional software or WAP/Web content) is a total nightmare.

            I've written DHTML/AJAX sites comparible to Google maps (including one that's
    • by AnyoneEB (574727)
      Yeah, Google Maps outside of a web browser would probably look much more like this [google.com]. ;)
  • Data Bills (Score:2, Insightful)

    Web 2.0 can't take off on mobile phones when the you are being raped by the cell phone cell phone companys for data use, unlimited plans that are not unlimited, locked down phones, phones that only work with one company, and more.
  • It seems to me that the reason that a lot of these apps haven't made their way on to portable platforms (aside from the technical restraints) is simply because many of these services (myspace, facebook, etc) provide a way of mirroring one's real-world friends, acquaintances, &c on the internet and having even more ways of interacting with them. If I'm in the sort of situation where I'm likely to have access to a mobile platform (and not to a computer) odds are that I'm actually hanging out with those f
  • I smell Web 3.0 coming on, and it smells about as bad as 2.0.

  • the majority of Web 2.0 sites require AJAX to do their magic, which will be both CPU and bandwidth intensive.

    Given a non-3G phone's connection (GPRS, EDGE, or 1xRTT), AJAX's nonstop connection to the servers will be a huge bottleneck to the usability of the apps.

    unless we downgrade the apps to WHTML-compatible, which nullifies any advantage Web 2.0 has over the vanilla 1.0 (whatever that is)
    • by sugapablo (600023)
      subuse.net and subuse.net/level2 works great on phones, full of web 2.0 "buzz"

      But then again, "2.0" is basically what the web was supposed to be, isn't it? It started out with the first "browser" being a browser/editor, if I remember.

      More buzzwords than you can shake a stick at! Reminds me of when people wanted XML for everything, even if they didn't know what XML was or what it was used for. (This was just recently.)
  • Of course craptastic Web 2.0 pages don't work on mobile devices. They use JavaScript like it's the high fructose corn syrup of the development world.

    I can't get too mad at the article, though, because clearly 99% of the world's web authors are clueless about writing compliant, gracefully-degrading pages. If they made sure every page was at least minimally functional in lynx, mobile devices would easily be good enough.

    Maybe some sort of "Mobile Device Compatible" certifications body would help. It doesn't
    • Maybe some sort of "Mobile Device Compatible" certifications body would help. It doesn't even have to be a binary condition; they can be "compliant with level one mobile usage," "compliant with level two mobile usage," and so on.

      While I agree completely that some sort of standards board would be really helpful in establishing even a basic consistency across different mobile web experiences, I think that it really *would* have to be a binary condition. There's enough confusion as is without having to wor

  • So the world had this great language designed to run on small devices and it was perfect for the web... Microsoft poisoned it and Sun dropped the ball. So now we're imitating real applications in a scripting language that was intended to serve as glue for the real language.

    And now we want to run that on our phones.

    Sigh.

    Pat Niemeyer
    • So now we're imitating real applications in a scripting language that was intended to serve as glue for the real language.

      Actually, what is known as "JavaScript" was developed at Netscape (in the pre-AOL purchase days) and the language has nothing to do with Java, and the name to "JavaScript" was a late change (and one that has caused a lot of partly-intentional confusion). It's not glue for Java, it's actually an implimentation of ECMAScript - as is the very similar ActionScript (used by Flash) or JScript
      • The most compelling use for LiveScript at the time was that you could interact with Applets and plugins in the page... Hence the overexcited name change.

        I was just pointing out the absurdity that web content could have had a really solid programming model underpinning it - Java or something like Java. But this was not in Microsoft's best interest and didn't make Sun much money on the client side, so we all lost out.

        I have nothing against scripting languages in general ;)

        Pat Niemeyer
        • by @madeus (24818)
          Aaaah, I've just followed the link to your site and realise you almost certianly knew all that already! 8)

          The most compelling use for LiveScript at the time was that you could interact with Applets and plugins in the page... Hence the overexcited name change.

          I'm not sure I think that was the most compelling use for it (not that I dislike Java), but I can see now why you might see it that way :)

          Personally I'd really like to see more use of scripting languages for simple applications, not least because I thin
  • There is actually a mobile version of Google maps, written in Java. Works very well on my phone (Sony Ericsson K700i), despite of the small screen. So, you can get the functionality, even though it may more sense to make a custom Java application instead of trying to run everything through a browser. This also allows you to make custom modifications to the mobile version, as mobile phones are very different from PCs when it comes to screen real estate and input methods.

    I understand the attraction of having

  • Never mind 2.0... (Score:5, Interesting)

    by dghcasp (459766) on Wednesday October 18, 2006 @05:25PM (#16492477)

    Never mind Web 2.0 apps on my mobile, I'm still waiting for Web 1.0 pages to work half decent.

    For better or worse, the Web seems to have settled on a header plus the two or three column layout. On a mobile, unless the site has been optimized (which very few are) you have to scroll down through the header (where every link usually ends up being a seperate line) then through everything on the left and right before you get to the content.

    Actually, in the spirit of "picture worth 1000 words," let me SHOW you what the slashdot home page looks like on my BlackBerry 8700;

    the first new article is in bold below -- See how far you have to scroll to see it?

    Slashdot [added for lameness filter] [Grr still says too lame]
    Search [added for lameness filter] [Grr still says too lame]
    News for nerds, stuff that matters

    * Preferences [added for lameness filter] [Grr still says too lame]
    * Subscribe [added for lameness filter] [Grr still says too lame]
    * Journal [added for lameness filter] [Grr still says too lame]
    * Bookmarks [added for lameness filter] [Grr still says too lame]
    * Password [added for lameness filter] [Grr still says too lame]

    * Logout [added for lameness filter] [Grr still says too lame]
    * Why Subscribe? [added for lameness filter] [Grr still says too lame]

    Sections [added for lameness filter] [Grr still says too lame]

    *
    Main [added for lameness filter] [Grr still says too lame]
    * Apple [added for lameness filter] [Grr still says too lame]
    * AskSlashdot [added for lameness filter] [Grr still says too lame]
    * Backslash [added for lameness filter] [Grr still says too lame]
    * Books [added for lameness filter] [Grr still says too lame]
    * Developers [added for lameness filter] [Grr still says too lame]
    * Games [added for lameness filter] [Grr still says too lame]
    * Hardware [added for lameness filter] [Grr still says too lame]
    * Interviews [added for lameness filter] [Grr still says too lame]
    * IT [added for lameness filter] [Grr still says too lame]
    * Linux [added for lameness filter] [Grr still says too lame]
    * Politics [added for lameness filter] [Grr still says too lame]
    * Science [added for lameness filter] [Grr still says too lame]
    * YRO [added for lameness filter] [Grr still says too lame]

    Vendors [added for lameness filter] [Grr still says too lame]

    * AMD [added for lameness filter] [Grr still says too lame]

    Help [added for lameness filter] [Grr still says too lame]

    * FAQ [added for lameness filter] [Grr still says too lame]
    * Bugs [added for lameness filter] [Grr still says too lame]

    Stories [added for lameness filter] [Grr still says too lame]

    * Old Stories [added for lameness filter] [Grr still says too lame]
    * Old Polls [added for lameness filter] [Grr still says too lame]
    * Topics [added for lameness filter] [Grr still says too lame]
    * Hall of Fame [added for lameness filter] [Grr still says too lame]
    * Bookmarks [added for lameness filter] [Grr still says too lame]
    * Submit Story [added for lameness filter] [Grr still says too lame]

    About [added for lameness filter] [Grr still says too lame]

    * Supporters [added for lameness filter] [Grr still says too lame]
    * Code [added for lameness filter] [Grr still says too lame]

    Services [added for lameness filter] [Grr still says too lame]

    * PriceGrabber [added for lameness filter] [Grr still says too lame]
    * Sponsor Solutions [added for lameness filter] [Grr still says too lame]
    * Special Offers [added for lameness filter] [Grr still says too lame]
    * Surveys [added for lameness filter] [Grr still says too lame]

    Older Stuff [added for lameness filter] [Grr still says too lame]

    * [added for lameness filter] [Grr still says too lame]

    Tuesday October 17
    o Kansas Soil Yields Massive Meteorite (157)
    o Flic

    • by afidel (530433)
      www.google.com/xhtml [google.com]

      It might break some pages but it does a nice job of stripping down most websites so they run well on mobile devices. I use it on pages where I just want the info, not the "functionality" of the page.
    • by jZnat (793348) *
      Does the Blackberry do RSS? If so, just use the RSS feed.
    • by Mr_Silver (213637)

      Actually, in the spirit of "picture worth 1000 words," let me SHOW you what the slashdot home page looks like on my BlackBerry 8700;

      I agree. It's terrible viewing Slashdot on a phone, PDA or BlackBerry. I read your comment this morning on the train using my 8700 this morning too.

      However the difference was that I was using AvantSlash [fourteenminutes.com] to parse and filter out all the cruft, hence presenting you with a PDA and mobile friendly version.

      Disclaimer: I'm biased as I wrote it, but you're exactly the type of pers

  • So you can plan journeys, print maps for people, link people to maps more easily (like it or not its harder to use on your mobile).
  • by Aceticon (140883) on Wednesday October 18, 2006 @05:36PM (#16492615)
    Which Web 2.0 definition are they using here, the share-trader's one or the technologist's one?

    If it's the first, then it all goes around new business models that (in a not yet fully explained way) explore the networking and first mover advantage effects of online social networking sites to make money.

    Now, beyond the fact that mobile phones already support two of the most popular tools for social networks (voice calls and SMS), exactly which new social network features can the online social network sites comunity bring to the mobile phone world that either have already been tried and failed miserable (think picture exchange - MMS) or would not work properly due to the current limitiations of the technology and/or the pricing models for mobile phone usage (think YouTube-mobile)?

    From the top of my head, the few uses that i can think of which might be successful are things like allowing the user to navigate his online network of contacts also from his mobile (think a LinkedIn mobile user interface). That might help with the stickiness of the service but might be difficult to moneytise.

    If we're going about the technology definition of Web 2.0 that all goes about providing in a browser a user intereface that feels and reacts as one done in a thick client application (basically fast responding and updating what's displayed only where it needs to be updated - thus without a full repaint). That's actually the whole point of AJAX (which is the bastardized mix of technologies people had to came up with in order to make the above mentioned happen under today's standard browser implementations).

    This has no application to mobile phones whatsover since neither WML browsers (for WAP) nor miny web-browsers support the necessary standards to allow using of AJAX like techniques.
    • by mooncaine (778422)
      Instead of calling AJAX a "bastardized mix", as if multiple technologies working together was an unhappy compromise, I'd say AJAX is a successful mix of technologies, and that this is the way it ought to be, in general -- get disparate tools that already exist to do work for you, rather than invent a new tool to do that same work. To me, AJAX isn't bastardized, it's "gung ho": many working together to get a job done.

      It's just a philosophical leaning, not a criticism of your word choice at all. I just want t
      • by Aceticon (140883)
        I call it bastardized because Javascript is an error prone and hard to maintain language, code has to be developed on the server side to support the client side Javascript and all of the server-side code, the client side Javascript and the page's HTML and CSS are tightly coupled (meaning that changing one can break the others).

        From the point of view of software architecture and/or the software development process, AJAX is not good - hence "bastardized".

        It is, however, the best we have at the moment to make
        • by mooncaine (778422)
          Fair enough; you've convinced me. I agree that "bastardized" is appropriately pejorative. The only JS I've used was already supported by the web server[s] I used, so I actually didn't realize that JS depends on the web server. I believed it was a langauge that was interpreted by the browser.

          As far as the code from different sources being tightly coupled: I agree it's a pain, but I also see advantages -- such as my being able to use JS, HTML and CSS without realizing that JS depended on server-side code. I s
          • by Aceticon (140883)
            Actually i think i didn't explain things correctly, so i'll try to clarify:

            The JS language itself doesn't depend on the server. The dependency (an thus the coupling) comes when going the AJAX way where JS code on the browser side asynchronously (either triggered by some user action or by a timer) makes a (asynchronous) HTTP connections to the server and asks for pieces data which it (the JS code) then uses to update the information shown on the browser. The dependency here is that, to serve each possible re
  • Quoth the poster:

    So many Web 2.0 apps seem like a natural fit for use on mobile phones -- more so, in fact, than the PCs they were written for.... Frankly, I wonder why anyone would even want to use them while sitting at a desk.

    Because it's more fun than actually working [slashdot.org].

  • "Frankly, I wonder why anyone would even want to use them while sitting at a desk."

    Ehmm...nice display, maybe?
    Like the added functions available on a desktop?
    Have no use for a mobile phone, but still have a use for Google Maps?
    Maybe I only feel the need to be connected when I want to be connected?
    Don't really give a rat's ass about your opinions?

    Sit down, and STFU. The world does not revolve around you. If more people had more influence, then maybe you would see your utopia realised, but apparently we do no
    • I have two mobile phones, and don't use the web at all on either one. Well, i would on one of them except that i can't seem to get an account working with the incompetent provider, but that's beside the point; it isn't an important feature to me. Yet, i do use Flickr and Google Maps (and/or similar apps) quite frequently from my desktop. Personally, i think catering to mobile phones is a step backward for the Internet. Phone manufacturers and programmers should be the ones doing the catch-up work and ad
      • by rts008 (812749)
        Thanks for a reasonable reply.

        I don't know that the internet for phones is a step backwards, but in the current incarnation of a website (more Flash, more JAVA, More scripts, etc.) it becomes problamatic.

        I have no interest in owning a cellphone, much less using one, but.....
        I'm not a Luddite. I can see where this could be a deal breaker for many folks that depend on connectivity for their jobs.

        I have to wonder how much DRM plays in the delay of getting connected totally.

        A few years back, cellphones were jus
  • the BIG picture.
  • I'm using my Nokia N93 with Flickr upload (http://www.flickr.com/nokia), reading RSS feeds using Widsets (www.widsets.com - widgets for mobile), using their great browser to even download videos from video.google.com and for example Google has a great Google Earth SW downloadable from www.google.com/gmm. And I'm sure there are plenty of others - they just lack a good community to write about.
  • Slashdot doesn't work on mobile phones either. On my normally web-capable Treo-650, Slashdot comes across as one long, vertical, unreadable string of text in the middle of the screen. Even when I turn off images I can not read slashdot. This is new Slashdot only, old Slashdot worked fine. Wonder what the Slashdot admins are trying to say by saying that Web 2.0 doesn't work doesn't work on mobile phones? The Treo 650 brower I have is called Blazer v4.0 . I can ~jimmy~ the loading by stopping the xfer

  • people use 'web 2.0' without quotes. Or use it in a paragraph without including the following: 'stupid','buzz term', or 'nonsense phrase';
  • Take for example, [...] Flickr or any of the myriad social networking sites. Frankly, I wonder why anyone would even want to use them while sitting at a desk.
    Frankly, I wonder why anyone would even want to use them at all. OK, this might be why I will never become a billionaire. I could never have "invented" something the like, because I never, ever thought that someone will actually find crap like this usefull.
  • Anyone else seen widsets [widsets.com]. Kind of like Yahoo widgets/Konfabulator/Dashboard for your mobile. Works great on my E61, but mainly when using a WiFi link.

Time to take stock. Go home with some office supplies.

Working...