Fear Moves Up the Stack

Fear of Web 2.0 is the focus of a recent post by Read/Write Richard:
enterprises have a fear of web 2.0 tools being mis-used by their employees. It occurred to me, as I’m sure it has occurred to others, that this is similar to enterprise’s fear of PCs a couple of decades ago.

That is turn reminded me of a remark by Bob Young to a bunch of academics, to the effect that we should be studying the similarity between the rise of open source in the enterprise and the earlier rise of the PC. This was at a conference shortly after Bob had left the Red Hat CEO job to start Lulu.

A table is often a good way to develop thoughts like this, so here goes.

Intruder in the enterprise
Brought in by
Cause of fear to
Web 2.0 End-users IT, management
Open source Sysadmins, developers Management, often including IT management Often not visible to end users
PC End-users IT, management

Four things strike me about the table:

  1. Fear is moving up the stack.
  2. Web 2.0 appears to have more in common with the PC than with open source.
  3. The table is grossly over-simplified.
  4. I’ll post it anyway and see if anyone wants to comment or build on it. If you want to take the table and build on it, please note the Creative Commons Attribution license on this blog; I point this out to encourage, not to discourage, sharing and improvement.

One thought on “Fear Moves Up the Stack”

  1. Why is there so much hesitation about adopting web 2.0 technologies in the work place? It seems to me that people have always had distractions to deal with aside from the watercooler…fantasy football, stock prices, company pools.

    All kidding aside web 2.0 enterprise apps do have a 90esque PC feel to them. Hot new enterprise apps are coming out in droves(check out Taleo http://blogs.zdnet.com/SAAS/?p=378). Its just a matter of time before all the blue hairs wise up and say “you know what this Web 2.0 thing seems pretty hip-let’s standardize are whole she-bang with these new age fandangles”

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