There’s this person, let’s call him J. I don’t really know him, but I have read his blog, met some of his friends and so on. He seems a bright guy, just out of the university, did an exchange stint in a prestigious US university. Very much into technology marketing and entrepreneurship. Haven’t got a job yet, no real working experience but I suppose expected to land one soon or startup the next big thing. Probably talks well. One of those guys who you expect to meet, talking about startup business plans, elevator pitches, venture capitalists and grand visions of the new new thing. Someone you might imagine from the good old dot-com days. Probably saw the burst but was unaffected or unscarred as he was still in school. Talks really a lot about Web 2.0 and blogs about it with enthusiasm and flourish.
There’s this other person, let’s call him M. I knew him briefly when I was giving a talk on open source licensing during IX 2003. He’s slightly older than J (not that much). Never went to university. Learnt technologies by using it and doing it. Came out to work really young, about 14 years old I think. Talks very well, sells well enough. Went through the dot-com bust with his eyes open – not unscathed (no-one was) but unbowed. He went ahead to start his software/hardware own company. Talks passionately about Free and Open Source software but doesn’t blog too much about it.
They’re both below 30 years old, much younger than I am, one has achieved a lot already, the other dreams of achieving a lot very soon.
The next Internet boom is coming. You can see the flashing lights now on Web 2.0, progeny of the much-maligned Web Services. Buzzwords like SOA and AJAX have invaded the technical space while social networks and mapping mashups are on the rise like the portals, e-commerce sites and search engines of old. Will it reach the heights of its predecessor’s madness and spending fervour? I would say no, but you might never know.
So who will survive, Mr. J or Mr. M?