Last week, 7,000 people converged on San Francisco to attend the Web 2.0 Expo, and since then there’s been a lot of talk about it across the blogosphere. With that kind of turn-out I was thinking, Web 2.0 really is a hot topic. But then the new Forrester Report, Global Enterprise Web 2.0 Market Forecast: 2007 To 2013, threw a monkey wrench into the picture.
As you review Forrester’s report, keep in mind the findings are primarily focused on Enterprise Web 2.0 applications for big companies. “In 2008, firms with 1000 employees or more will spend $764 million on Web 2.0 tools and technologies. Over the next five years, that expenditure will grow at a compound annual rate of 43%.”
Forrester’s forecast indicates less then 68% of small businesses have any intentions of implementing Web 2.0. into their businesses. Forrester also points out that their analysis of Enterprise Web 2.0 doesn’t include consumer services like Blogger, Facebook, Netvibes, and Twitter. Sarah Perez writes on Read Write Web, “Large software vendors, are integrating Web 2.0 into their offerings with features such as wikis, blogs, RSS technologies, social networking and mashup tools, by 2013, few buyers will seek out and purchase Web 2.0 tools specifically.”
Web 2.0 Tool Kit
Forrester says much of the Web 2.0 tool kit will simply “fade into the fabric of enterprise collaboration suites, and that by 2013, few buyers will seek out and purchase Web 2.0 tools specifically, Web 2.0 will become a feature, not a product.
Ah, suite software. Sound familiar? You’re probably thinking been there done that–end of story. But wait, this is where I think the report get really interesting.
Right now it’s reported, “people between the ages of 12 and 17 are the more avid consumers of social computing technology, with one-third of them acting as content creators. By 2011, Forrester believes users of Web 2.0 tools will mirror users of the web at large. Over the next three years, millions of baby boomers will retire and the younger workers brought in to fill the void will not only want, but will expect similar tools in the office as those they use at home in their personal lives.”
Ah hah, younger workers will expect similar tools! And why would that be?
21st Century Literacy
According to the 21st Century Workforce Commission National Alliance of Business, “The current and future health of America’s 21st Century Economy depends directly on how broadly and deeply Americans reach a new level of literacy-‘21st Century Literacy’ that includes strong academic skills, thinking, reasoning, teamwork skills, and proficiency in using technology.”
What is 21st century literacy? The report from The 21st Century Literacy Summit defines it this way:
“21st century literacy is the set of abilities and skills where aural, visual and digital literacy overlap. These include the ability to understand the power of images and sounds, to recognize and use that power, to manipulate and transform digital media, to distribute them pervasively, and to easily adapt them to new forms.”
The Partnership for 21st Century Skills has called for schools to adopt a 21st century curriculum that blends thinking and innovation skills; information, media, and Information and Communications Technologies (ICT) literacy.
Every generation has its skeptics, the ones who don’t believe in making changes in the way we work, live and communicate. But while they’re busy debating it, our youth are out there increasing their literacy in information and communication technologies.
Will you be ready to work with new younger colleagues? Will your company be able to compete in the global economy? If not now, then when?
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