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Francine Hardaway: Soon You Will Have Better Information

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There’s a sold out crowd in the room to hear how Web 2.0 will impact health care. David Brailer, who last time I heard him at an SLHI conference was the Bush administration’s National Health Information Technology coordinator and now heads a CALPers sponsored venture fund, Health Evolution Partners, has said that there is a pent-up demand for community and communication in health care, and that Web 2.0 has harnessed that.

He also said that unlike most industries, in which technology can drive social change, in health care social change will drive technology adoption. Brailer predicts that the next two years will see a big consolidation in the industry in which the companies that adopt Web 2.0 tools will succeed, and those who don’t will not. EmpowHer is a social network for women, which will allow them to make healthy choices based on a huge body of aggregated and user-generated information. You will help us have better information.

So now we come to the definition of Web 2.0. For a technical definition, I refer you to the one on O’Reilly’s site. O’Reilly, the technology publisher, coined this term. Here are his examples of the difference between Web 1.0, which ended with the bursting of the dotcom bubble, and Web 2.0, whose bubble is still growing now.

Web 1.0 Web 2.0

DoubleClick –> Google AdSense

Ofoto –> Flickr

Akamai –> BitTorrent

mp3.com –> Napster

Britannica Online –> Wikipedia

personal websites –> blogging

evite –> upcoming.org and EVDB

domain name speculation –> search engine optimization

page views –> cost per click

screen scraping –> web services

publishing –> participation

content management systems –> wikis

directories (taxonomy) –>

tagging (”folksonomy”)
stickiness –> syndication

For those of you who are not technical, I summarize by saying that in Web 2.0 the user not only posts the information or reads it, but can also interact with, share, and comment on it. Indeed, the user can even create the information, like users do on YouTube. Web 2.0 is a collaboration.

It is easy to see, then, why this Health 2.0 conference exists.

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