Great dinner last night for the scripting news folks. About 10 people showed up which was great for the very short notice we gave everyone. I hooked up with Ed Alkema who I've done some broadband stuff with in the past, good to put a face to the weblog.
Ed is a developer of cellphone applications, he told me the saddest story about WAP, and why it died before it really had a chance. Apparently every phone manufacturer made up their 'own' version of the WAP protocol and built proprietary browsers. The net effect is that Ed said developing content for close to 2000 (!) different versions and permutations made it impossible.
This is exactly what is happening to RSS. By introducing competing formats such as Atom and whatever else is being cooked up by companies like Google and Moveable Type will make content creation too overbearing and costly for anyone that wants to reach the widest audience possible.
I'm not a technologist, I'm a user, you know, one of the people that actually buys tools and services. I was dissapointed that WAP didn't happen, but I'll be really pissed if the same happens to weblog syndication.
Particularly Google needs to think about their strategy. If they continue to promote 'alternative' syndication formats, we all loose.
The biggest loosers will be Google Shareholders. Not the 500 or so 'friends and family' that will ride the IPO, but everyone who invests in the company once it's public. The company is betting it's future and shareholders money with a plan has historically been proven to fail. That is sad.
Dave has posted about this as well. Joi, perhaps we should talk offline one of these days. Long time coming anyway.