This is my last geeky post for a while. Promise.
As you may or may not know, I’m a closet geek and secretly a big time early adopter (my FriendFeed and Seesmic shirts should arrive later this week).
I say that I am a “closet geek” because I really don’t tend to make a big deal out of it, and it certainly doesn’t define who I am. As much fun as “poking” my friends is, real life is just more fun.
And that brings me to today’s rant.
I’ve got a profile on FriendFeed where you can see a history of what I’ve been up to lately. Sort of.
It includes data from most of the sites where I have a profile, that’s true, but it doesn’t know anything about what I’ve been doing off line.
Taken at face value, Twitter solves this problem by asking “What are you doing?” but Twitter is worthless for more reasons than I care to list and I’ll just leave it at that. Moving on…
What if there were a service, like Twitter, that we could update with what we’re doing, but the service went beyond unstructured messages.
What if it could dissect messages to get the real semantic data.
If I say I’m “Going to see WALL·E,” It could add WALL·E to the list of movies I’ve seen lately, tell me which of my friends have seen WALL·E. Ask me later to write a review of WALL·E. Maybe even let me know where WALL·E is playing in my area.
If I say “I love the song Above by Blue Man Group” it could “love” that song on my Last.fm profile, add it Blue Man Group to the list of artists I listen to, give me a list of my friends with the same taste in music, etc.
You could think of it as a semantic command line interface to connect my real life to my digital world.
If any “social service” can make money in this age of Web 2.0, it seems like this would be it.
With all this data, the potential for targeting or affiliate sponsorship is huge.
In the first example, Disney could sponsor all WALL·E related messages to show a link to the official WALL·E website. Or a ticket vendor could sponsor a link to buy tickets to “See this movie too”
In the second example, you could show “upcoming Blue Man Group shows in your area” or links to Blue Man Group CDs.
This seems like a great way to add value to the conversation without being obtrusive. It would also promote third party services if, like I mentioned, I could link my Flixter account to share data about what movies I see, my Last.fm account to share data about what music I listen to, my Where I’ve Been map, my Upcoming.org events…
You get the point.
We’ve been talking about convergence for the past decade (I still have my CueCat around here somewhere…), and we’re making steps in that direction, but there is still a large chasm between the real world and the Web 2.0 world.
And there will be a large reward for whoever figures out how to fill that gap.