I haven’t had a whole lot of time recently to play around in the MMO world but I follow the, err, 2.0 space pretty closely.

There were a couple things that caught my eye this week and are both somewhat troubling.

I noticed a tiny little site called youwereme.com. The premise is essentially a ‘live’ version of Yahoo! Answers.

You post your question to the pool of folk and somebody will give their opinion back. Should I quit my job, should I dump my boyfriend - that kind of thing.

On the outside you could argue that it’s a pretty good idea. Utilising the collective "intelligence" of the net to solve your life problems.

So I register and say “I want to answer” and wait… and wait… What? Nobody wants my advice? Actually nobody is there…

… and there probably never will be.

I would love to see the business plan for this – especially the conversion funnel:

  • If I have a burning question that needs answering and...
  • If I feel that the net is the right place to solve it and...
  • If any of my existing social networks can’t / won’t help and...
  • If I happen to hear about this site and...
  • If somebody happens to be logged on and...
  • If they happen to be in my demographic / region...

Then I might be able to ask my question.

Phew. I reckon SETI has better odds.

Now, obviously this sort of thing needs critical mass to work. It has just started up and I have no idea how they plan to market it. But really.

I’m only using these guys as an example – I recently subscribed to Everything 2.0 - Bob Stumpel’s excellent source of … well… everything 2.0 and am astounded that he posts about 10 sites a day.

Most of them are doomed from the start because they make the assumption there the fraction of the fraction of the fraction is going to be sufficient to give a good user experience and make cash out of it.

The other thing I noticed this week was younoodle.com. Now these guys are getting a fair amount of coverage.

They have apparently developed an AI that will predict how your start-up is going to do over the next five years.

Fantastic. Totally eliminates the need for a stock market, investors and, well, luck. The site is there now but the AI ain’t so who knows what it does. I’ll bet, however, that somebody put a large whack of cash into it.

Recession on the way. Ill-advised spending on technology. Recruitment costs up 40%.

Is it just me or haven’t we seen all this before?

Jon Bains is Chairman of Lateral .


Published 21 February, 2008 by Contributor

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Comments (1)



Why is 10 sites a day such a ludicrous figure? Have you ever checked how many businesses are launched on a daily basis across the entire world? Surely 10 must be quite conservative.

over 10 years ago

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