It's Web 2.0 but it's still Day #1. Jeff is showing the first every Amazon.com home page (Web 0.0). Search was not on the home page. No personalization. Web 1.0 (today's Amazon) is very different. Customized, personalized, nine years of evolution. You can buy live lobster.
Web 2.0 is different. It's about AWS (Amazon Web Services). It's not on the web site for users to see. It's about making the internet useful for computers. More APIs coming. AWS 4.0 is out. Lots more data comes back now. This all helps them sell more products. You even get paid for using them!
In Beta is Alexa Web Services--get access to the web crawl. (Excellent!) So this means you can find out if Alexa things a site is slow or fast. Adult or not. Links in, links out. Related web sites (based on usage data).
Demo time: MusicPlasma.com from France. A completely visual interface to Amazon.com product data (relate albums, etc).
ScoutPal is a service that uses cell phone with bar code scanners to lookup info on books in real-time (like at a garage sale). "It's like hunting with radar." (Very cool looking.)
A9 is completely build on top of web services too. Web results via Google, Image results via Google, Book results via Amazon.com, Movies from IMDB, Reference info from GuruNet, and so on. Even the search history service. Web services used internally are even a win.
Tim asks when this "rip, mix, burn" model of building web apps starts to stomp on someone's business model. Jeff says you ought to be charging for some web services. They'll evolve and good business models will emerge. Tim says Amazon and eBay have a built-in model, so it's easy for them. Tim asks about exposing one-click as a web service. Jeff doesn't know.
Tim asks about Amazon being a change junky. They're far beyond being an ecommerce site. All the user invitation makes them different. What's the secret ingredient. Jeff says you need to find the unique aspects of your company's offerings--but you can't give 'em away for free. Find a way to charge. Inviting customers to participate is very important for Amazon. If it improves the customer experience, they want to do it.
Tim asks Jeff about using his fortune for space travel. He's definitely going into space. :-)
Someone from Wired is asking about the book scanning and search inside the book. What kind of data does Jeff want to make this stuff really go? Jeff talks about data that's hard to get to becuase (1) it's not in digital form or (2) it's very valuable and locked away. They solved #1 for many, many books. The second one is far harder to crack.
Someone from Macromdia asked about Amazon apps in Flash or with fat desktop clients. Amazon likes doing the desktop thing themselves. Others can add on via the APIs.
The guy who designed the effects for the Matrix trilogy is here, asking Jeff about on-line games and multi-player universe style games. Jeff thinks its coming. Sims is just the beginning.
See Also: My Web 2.0 post archive for coverage of all the other sessions I attended.
Posted by jzawodn at October 05, 2004 04:40 PM