Sunday, April 16, 2006

Why and How we will get to Enterprise Web 2.0

There has been some interesting debate on the take up of Web 2.0 technologies in the Enterprise. The very nature of many Enterprise environments discourages the adoption of Web 2.0. Content filters and browser lockdowns will do much to discourage adoption. It will require visionaries to see the potential and breakdown the internal barriers to adoption. I believe the more likely scenario will be a guerilla adoption driven from the fringe of the enterprise. Results oriented people who work in the enterprise but frequently interact with outside partners will be sucked in to using Web 2.0 solutions for the simple reason that it makes interaction between the members of their virtual teams quicker and easier. This underground adoption will continue until the lightbulb goes off somewhere deep inside the enterprise and the technology becomes blessed for internal adoption. Web 2.0 technology will be adopted more quickly in the enterprise than in previous revolutions so long as the developers of compelling solutions avoid the thick client trap. As long as their technology can be adopted with a zero install footprint then they will be able to skirt around the limitations of locked down pcs. As soon as adoption requires an administrator password for an install the speed of adoption will drop to a crawl and control of web 2.0 in the enterprise will cease being user driven and will become the perogative of the IT department. So the real challenge of Enterprise Web 2.0 adoption is the continued development of browser agnostic, client independent design in a zero client footprint. It may require more effort to make applications work across multiple browsers and multiple generations of browsers but this effort is essential to the ease of adoption.

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