Product & Startup Builder

Brad Burnham asks "What's Next?"

Added on by Chris Saad.
Brad writes a great post on the Union Square Ventures blog asking "What's next?". In it he explains that innovation moves up the stack and that we are now at the 'data' layer.

"In the early days, the central value proposition in the computer business was hardware. Later, it shifted to systems software, then applications software, and then networks. As more software functionality was delivered to a browser over the Internet, the basis of competition shifted from features to service level metrics like reliability, accessibility and security. I believe that today, at least in the area of consumer web services, we have already moved on to a new focus of competitive differentiation based on data."

I am glad VCs are starting to ask these questions. It shows they are thinking beyond 'me too' services.

He goes on to write:

"One way to look at that question is to argue that we have arrived at the end of history. The progression to date has been up the stack in a classic architecture diagram, data is on top of that stack, and nothing sits on top of the data. I disagree."

I disagree too Brad. Here are a few more layers to think about.

Once data is structured and syndicated, the next job is to:

  1. Aggregate - And I don't mean like a feed reader. I mean like Edgeio and Vast

  2. Personalize - Using Attention Data

  3. Visualize - Using all sorts of techniques. With Touchstone we are using escalating alerts. The more personally relevant the content (from step 2) the bigger the alert.