Click here to show or hide the menubar.

Home >  Archive >  2010 >  October >  18

Previous / Next

Marc Canter was right
By Dave Winer on Monday, October 18, 2010 at 7:36 AM.

I've known Marc for many many years, and this isn't the first time I've realized how right he was, and how early. There's some glory in being too early, but not much money (unless you file a patent and it sticks and you're not more than 17 years too early). permalink

To his credit, a couple of times Marc hit the mark almost perfectly. VideoWorks (which became Director) and MazeWars, which was the Angry Birds of its day, when the net was Apple's LAN, built into every Mac. Marc realized that you could make a game that worked over the LAN. We spent endless hours chasing each other in the maze we had at Living Videotext. A perfect time-waster. :-) permalink

The idea was this: Social network software should be a commodity.  permalink

A picture named mazewarsAdSmall.gifHis product was called PeopleAggregator. A very accurate but slightly frightening name. The premise was this: Every virtual place should define a social network. It should be as easy to start a social network as it is to install an email server, or a web server. And someday it will be. Marc's someday is actually in the past. He had that product a number of years ago. He was able to extrapolate to a future that we're now right on the cusp of. Who knows when it will actually be realized? Sometimes thse things take an excruciating amount of time. permalink

Examples of virtual places that will be the start of social networks: NYU, Starbucks, BestBuy, my apartment building, Dunkin Donuts, Logan Airport, Verizon, Netflix, The Godfather, Five Easy Pieces, Dirty Harry, Casablanca, Fifth Avenue, Vail. permalink

In a university, the roles you can play are: student, teacher, administrator, security guard, teaching assistant. permalink

In the Godfather, you can play a consigliere, the youngest son, a farmer in Sicily. A spinoff, The Sopranos, has all the roles from the Godfather, with a few more, updated roles. In an object-oriented world, it inherits the properties of its parent class. permalink

You get the idea. Every place that defines a clear set of roles is a place that can host a social network that means something to some people. Facebook and Farmville hint at the beginnings of this idea.  permalink

This is on my mind today because I just moved, and had to change my address at all the sites that I have accounts at. The two phone companies I use. My credit cards and banks. Etc. permalink

I'm not sure I want every one of them to define a social network, but certainly AT&T and Verizon, if they had the kind of vision that a Zuck or Ev had, would have started one by now. Of course they don't have the vision. But soon they will. And who will provide them the "off-the-shelf-solution" that makes installing a social network easy, predictable and reliable. permalink

Anyway, I just wanted to give the hat-tip to my under-appreciated friend.  permalink

A picture of a slice of cheese cake.permalink

PS: Marc is a bona fide visionary, but he puts too much faith in Google. I predict they will break his heart, like a Cupertino-based fruit company did once, very long ago. :-( permalink

RSS feed for Scripting News
This site contributes to the community river.

© Copyright 1997-2012 Dave Winer. Last update: Monday, October 18, 2010 at 8:26 AM Eastern. Last build: 8/26/2012; 5:58:55 PM. "It's even worse than it appears."

RSS feed for Scripting News

Previous / Next