I authored a substantive article on the evolution of consumer social media tools into new enterprise software tools at the MindTouch blog. I put some sweat into this one. Give it a read.
There can be no doubt that one of the hottest spaces in enterprise software today is collaboration. It’s no surprise collaboration is getting a lot of interest. The old metaphors for capturing, authoring and sharing information are stale and inefficient. As such, there is a lot of room for achieving productivity improvements through improved user experience. This has been true for all software, but especially so in the enterprise software space where collaboration is essential to daily operation and where every ounce of productivity translates into big dollars.
In the last several years a software renaissance has been taking place in the consumer space that has begun seeping into, and benefiting, business and enterprise systems. The innovation in software during this renaissance, more commonly referred to as Web 2.0, has been almost entirely about improving user experience metaphors. AJAX, new social metaphors, lessening of the file/file system metaphor, making structure implicit rather than explicit and just generally simplifying user interfaces are all trends evidenced in this new wave of software. While most pundits think “Web 2.0” has been about making the Web participatory, enabling social connectedness and conversations these are but side effects of the improved ease of use and increased stickiness (fun of use) software has experienced.