I was browsing through Don Hinchcliffe's lists of Web 2.0 software: The Best Web 2.0 Software of 2005 and More Great Web 2.0 Software, wondering how quickly this information would be out of date given the rising adoption rate of Ajax and all things "Web 2.0" - a term that I admit I'm still a bit fuzzy about.
In 2002 and 2003 I created an online catalog to track the quickly evolving marketplace for COTS collaboration tools, but I can see this type of solution would need a radical overhaul to work with Web 2.0 concepts. To start with, the lessons of collective intelligence tell us that a handful of researchers can't be the only ones populating the database. Rather, a system of open submissions and ratings would be necessary, such as in use at Digg. The second big change would be in the data elements captured - for example it's no longer interesting to filter tools by which "operating system" they run on. For a short while it may be interesting to filter based on which browsers it's been tested in. A huge discriminator would be whether there's an open API available. In addition to capturing "articles" (which could include blogs) on a particular tool, it would be cool to link each tool to a list of mashups that use it. Each of these may be considered a tool itself, so the links between tools will be recursive.
Very preliminary thoughts, to be sure, but the more important question is if such a tools guide was created, how would it be used? Would it be valuable?