In this speech I want to talk a little about my current perspective regarding the development of the Internet- a theme that a great number of people are constantly dedicating themselves to these days. Specifically, however, I want to talk about changes that are occurring right now, not changes that happen overnight, but rather shifts that will take some time to fully become apparent. These changes are caused by both technological as well as socio- economic developments. They are, in one way or another, portrayed by the media and by common perception as answers to the so- called ?Information overload? the Internet is facing today. I want to question this assumption a little, but more importantly, I want to point out how the combined Impact of these changes IS of special relevance to the World- Wide- Web designer, a field my partner Markus Weisbeck and I have been heavily involved in in the past year and a half.
First, I am going to talk about the unique position Web designers, whether they are professionals, hobbyists or anarchists or all three at once, are in today. Secondly, I want to get
into some definitions In order to highlight what I refer to as the difference between the ‘Interface’ and the ‘information landscape.” Thirdly, I will finally discuss the technological and
socio-economic changes that are Influencing the Internet “landscape’ today Here, I will get into the so-called ‘agents’ technology and developments imposed by social and market pressures, such as the rating system of the World-Wide Web Consortium ‘Pits.’ Fourthly, I wiII speak about an aspect that In the media so far has almost exclusively been portrayed only as the ‘Battle of the Browsers’, namely changes in the Worl-Wide Web Interface. As if the future of the Web interface could only be defined by the dialectical battle between two corporations that happen to be at the exclusive top of market penetration right now. Here, I will present you with my favorite alternative Web browser – not Netscape, not Microsoft – but rather a character from the film Star Wars: R2’. My fifth point is my conclusion and a ‘fliegender Wechsel’ as we call It in
German to Markus Welsbeck, who wiII talk about his project “Icon.gif’.
- Niko Waesche, Germany
- Markus Weisbeck, Germany
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