A Technology Breakout? Is there danger on the horizon?

CALTRADE posted 20th of March 2010 in Community Voice. 13 comments.

Just a short post on something I have been thinking about.  Could all the work we have done here be wasted because of some technology breakout?  - maybe even something that is right in front of us now?  A "technology breakout" is something that always concerns the U.S. Military - probably all militaries - that a adversary will invent some new weapon that jumps ahead in technology and leaves our weapons and defenses useless.  The happen throughout military history - the crossbow, the gun, the tank, the atom bomb.  In our industry, while they may not alter the course of course of history, happen much more frequently then they do in other industries.  Right now social networking seems to be going through some radical changes - the huge sites Twitter, Linkedin, Facebook - maybe a dozen or so others, certainly aren't sitting still.  They will continue to innovate and have massive resources and market position to do so.  Everybody here knows there are sites like Ning where you can put up you own social network in a minute or two - they are getting better also.  Last week, Google Buzz took the world by storm and is already huge.  I can't even keep up with all the stuff happening in mobile networking - suddenly location based services seem to be all the rage.

I'm wondering if by working so hard to make our communities work with Dolphin, we are being lulled into a false sense of security.  Look into your crystal ball - will we be relevant a year from now?    What technologies do we need to incorporate to make sure we are relevant?  I can come up with a few maybe.  I think people really may prefer logging into our sites with their Google, Facebook or OpenID passwords and we should get ready for that.  I think "status updates" will become standardized.  I am worried a little about the advent of "groups" in some of these services - if it was done well, it cold make some of our sites irrelevant.

More questions than answers I know, but that year of waiting for D7 was brutal, and the world didn't sit still while were were doing that testing.  My sites are getting better, but they are still not even close to what I want them to be, and if I can't get them going fairly soon, I think the world will just pass me by.  What do you all see as the major threats, and opportunities, to the technology we all are using?

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Sitting by, waiting a year on anything is the biggest enemy a person/company has. I and those I work with have never sat for second waiting on anything, if we want something that is not currently available, we develop it ourselves and utilize it as we see fit. That is what everyone should be doing.
@Mydatery - good, then put it on the market so we all can see it. Not everyone on this site is a developer - in fact most people here are not. Not everyone wants some special version of D6 - we waited for the D7 technology because we believe in what it can do. This is a complete innocent post. Please, please do not piss all over it as you do so often here. None of the things I mentioned here could be "developed" by me - that is wonderful that you can, but I can't.

Everyone else, see more another note of why I posted this. I have come across a few situations lately where people were making decisions because they were "vested" in a technology. One was a particularly horrible international trade system - built by a whole team of developers - and anyone one could tell that it would never make it. In project management terms, this is called "sunk costs"" - people don't want to change because of what they have invested in what they have. Now, in spite of some frustrations, I still think D7 is hot- but at the same time I don't want to be blinded to things happening in the market, or new technologies I should be considering.
without waiting a year - we now need basic feature missing

- such as payment systems - with recurring payment that works -- Dependent Fields 3 level
-- a system for couples better integrate -- a good affiliate system for the promotion of our sites

have a stable version without bug - which works with all browsers - would be a good thing compared to competitor part

it's so difficult to bring in new members - and keep them on our site - we must have perfect sites

dolphin must be as simple see more as possible for normal users

if not why people will remain on our site - when there's facebook or adultfriendfinder and other

in 1 year

People Search - several criteria - Search - Search Result - all people of all sites (robot style of Google - which runs the Internet)
I think more technology can ruin things just as easily as it improves certain things. People are already too enthralled by Myspace, Facebook, Twitter, and their cell phones. Believe it or not, I still use my cell phone as a phone. If you want to talk about the world passing by, imagine all the zombie like creatures glued to their Iphone screens so intensely, that they wouldn't notice the building is on fire until someone texted them with that info. Most of the world thinks Myspace and Facebook see more have done wonders for socializing. I think they have destroyed it. I remember when, if you wanted to form a group that shared common interests, you actually had to get in your car, drive somewhere, and actually meet with people face to face. I remember when Mafia Wars used real guns, and farming was hard work. To play a baseball game, you didn't sit in front of a TV with joysticks, you had to find a bunch of other kids, and you used real bats... real baseballs,,and real gloves. To have a chat, you met at a coffee shop. I hate what Facebook and Myspace have done to socializing.

Having said that, you might wonder why I want to build a social networking site. I'm off to a really slow start, but I want to build a social networking site that encourages people to get away from their computer and do something in the real world. I just want them to find that something on MY site. I plan on relying heavily on the groups and events feature. I want every single golf league, softball league, dart league, pool league, bowling league, etc.. to have a page on my site. I want every live music venue to have a page. Basically, I want my site to be the place to visit, if you want to find something to do in town. I'll have all the usual social networking stuff, but with an intense focus on local activities. Maybe I can make it work.. maybe not...it's a leap of faith.
I'm not convinced more technology is better. I believe a site built with Dolphin is like a lot of other things. You don't try to compete with a large volume product or service. If you focus on something specific, and do it very, very well.... you WILL get noticed.

Sure Facebook has 120,000,000 members, but there are probably 110,000,000 of them, that will never set foot in Houston TX. I'm more concerned with that other 10 million.
Rob, please don't think that was directed at you in any shape, manner or form. It wasn't, I'm not in that mindset at the moment to bother with that.

As far as placing things in the Market goes, tell ya what. When it is guaranteed that things will not be stolen then I will do that, until then I will continue to share in the same manner I have been which is privately.

All in all, my comment was and still is pointing out, that while D7 is a great product, none of us can afford to just sit around see more and wait on something, it's simply not logical to do that and when one does then the competition automatically passes that individual by, sorta like a race car sittin' on the side of the track out of gas waitin' on a yellow flag so he can get gas without losing his position. Of course he's going to lose by waiting on the yellow flag versus getting his gas under green and continuing to race.

Again, this is not direct at anyone in particular, but the things that all of us learned in D6 have been incredibly useful in D7 and transferring those items over. I see many of the modders/developers doing this very thing and this is why I so strongly before advocated continuing your development under D6 until D7 was stabilized. Nothing was lost in doing this, but a ton of useful data was gained in doing it.
Hi BoonExer!

I think its more a boost, the social networks are getting mature, thats it :) The next step...

danielmarseille I´m am completely with you. All your points are also my points, they are good ones, and we have them in the tasklist. The friend search, and how we can connect people to be in progress is strategic the most important thing. The last days I talked with some of the developers here. Dolphin has really a nice community. Keep on the good work, together! For me Facebook and see more Co is a timebomb. The made heavy mistakes! Heavy ones, and the truth comes out! I am more a permission based marketer. I´m not in a rush, I dont collect, and I dont see any gold. We see our starting community completely different. Look at e.g. Facebook. They e.g. analyze the stati even based on emotions :((( That must me permission based! Thats a must.

And I do believe in technology and making things easier. I do have so many ideas, maybe its better only to talk to my friends and with boonEx. We believe in the Builder. Its a great product, but yes with many core things missing.

I am familiar with the net since 1996, and I ve seen many Content Management Systems raising and falling. The most critical part in developing a CMS or a CB (= Community Builder) is: dont shiver a developer community, bring them together. Lets meet, lets create.

And look at the economy: What customers need, what customers like and finally what customers love! Where are you standing? For me I love Dolphin. I know its in "children´s shoes", however! The work, which was done yet, is real real damn good. I love them! Honor to the team!

Evolution is inevitable. We're simply talking about the survival of the fittest; whichever platform best responds to its users' needs (or markets best to have them adopt certain needs) is the one that prospers, and the rest will be outmoded sooner or later. Inventing new technologies is not hard. Introducing people to their possibilities is.

Of course half the web still looks like 1996, and a quarter browses with IE6, so things don't seem to be in such a rush across the board. Whatever suits see more your purpose suits your purpose, and Dolphin will only be outmoded for you when you wake up to see something that better meets your needs. It's as simple as that at the end of the day.

With all that said, if Trident / Dolphin 8 with a *proper architecture* aren't forthcoming over the next six to twelve months in grand style, I'd say you really should be concerned. I'm personally shocked at the amounts of time and money people spend developing their Dolphins, while a solid framework could cut that down dramatically, and if people don't get a Boonex solution for a decent and sufficiently economic (in terms of time-money-effort) website development environment, they'll be looking elsewhere for solutions that are smarter.
So far I can see and knowing that big sites as Facebook but also Hyves (with 5 milj members) are mostly focused on community games and making friends. The same like their groups. What can we do with Dolphin, can we make it different? That what you need to do.

My two cents.
Not sure if there is something on the horizon that will clean the board of all of the other players, certainly services like Ning are having an impact on the social networking scene - by making the technology accessible to non-programmers. One of my competitors is a Ning based site, and quite frankly, if Ning didn't exist, then nor would their site, as they are not programmers. The big players are simply increasing market share by expanding their market - to Joe Public, not sure that they are in see more direct competition with companies like Boonex - as after all, if you want a hook in the marketplace - you use something different from what everyone else is using. The main thing I can see is that some features introduced by these other services will filter down into mods / features for companies like Dolphin - as they have done already - after all, everyone wants a site like "facetubespacewhatever".

I think that the big developments / advancements are related to browser and language abilities - this is certainly true of AJAX, and the effect that this has had on user interaction, server - browser communication was not possible in this way a few years back - this is the WEB 2.0 that we hear so much about. Next steps are probably related to increased support for mobile devices - mobile device screens are increasing in size and resolution, mobile browser capability is also getting better, and as HL quite rightly pointed out - the phone is now seen as an extension of modern life.

2000 char limit...
I am still amazed that I can buy a DVD player that comes with integrated support for several websites - such is the power and impact of these main web companies - this is not technology driven - this is market driven - the interfaces are clunky and basic but are dedicated to each site - a simple browser with a dedicated media-type (css-type) would be a better option - this way anyone could develop for these devices, but it takes a large carrot to twist the arm of the big electronics manufacturers see more - and this is exactly what the big players offer. You have to remember that historically radio was the original household media platform - this lost out to the TV - which was augmented by video, then dvd, now blueray, but all are now feeling the pinch of the web based companies that offer all this and more. The major electronics companies all want a slice of this pie as it's affecting their bottom line.

As for what site owners should do - use what you have now and then when the technology improves, or new features come out, then you will need to update / upgrade / improve. The web is the latest media platform, which is constantly evolving, and as with any such industry, you will need to keep up to remain competitive.

As for those holding out from launching / starting their projects - waiting for D7 / waiting for D7 to work - I question this strategy. For those webmasters who have put their plans on hold until this happens, I cannot help but think that this is a years worth of members that they have lost out on - quite a substantial memberbase, not only this, but by the time that these 'new D7 features' have been finally fully debugged and are working as they should, they will no longer be new features. Better to lead the bandwagon, than jump on it after wards.

Dreaming with D7 is an unpardonable sin.
If any one want to break-free and reach the greates heights - Develop a S.Network from scratch or go opensource with fellow developers.

D7 is a great product but it doesnt allow anyone to dream on it. - Dream Killer!!!

Nimbuzz rocks with huge number of users. features [just, a simple chat, chatroom, twitter updates]
Advantages - S.N wherever you want. you can take the soical network access wherever you go.
but i dont see people tweeting, using facebook see more on pc in my office
but they are all logged in on their phones...

Maybe its time to concentrate on appstores, mobile networking and so on - to survive.
or we have another option, Keep waiting for new release, bug release then version release, then bug release, upgrade mods then again new release... and it wil be a fun game of waiting and dreaming...
Below is the legacy version of the Boonex site, maintained for Dolphin.Pro 7.x support.
The new Dolphin solution is powered by UNA Community Management System.