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Internet Trends

From iA wiki

See also: Internet | Link Dump

This is a list of links to software or web applications which we consider particularly innovative and trend setting. Criteria for inclusion: 1) should be in active use, 2) should show some degree of innovation. There is an "Ideas" section for things that are still in the whitepaper stage, but could become potentially groundbreaking.


Social software

Note: See social networking for a more complete list of similar tools
  • Orkut Discussion forums for cities, areas and most common topics only accessable by members. 9 million users and growing, most of them Brazilian. Owned by Google.
  • - Similar to LinkedIn; implicit network derived from email, referral feature, public Person information derived from member's contributions to profile.
  • LiveJournal - one of the biggest explicit social networky app currently available. provides personal/group journalling.
  • - discover people you don't know through people you know (webs of trust)
  • - like friendster, but for professionals, not dating.
  • - create tribes (a bit like groups) and get listing from your network
  • - organize national, local, and international events (has a proprietary location database)
  • - give away books and track who reads them
  • - free places to stay across the world
  • phpBB - most actively developed (?) bulletin board, used for some huge communities, e.g.
  • Advogato - weblog with trust metric
  • UpMyStreet - "the real-life guide to your neighbourhood" (UK)
  • Trust-forum - a new system of web forums designed to replace email, end spam and have serveral other important uses including a new type of dating system; will soon include a global login system, sort of decentralised passport.
  • CraigsList - gradually growing Internet classified service, originally based in the San Francisco Bay Area and increasing to more US cities and some big cities outside the US. Very user friendly.
  • BBC iCAN! (Beta) - "We make it easy for you to get together with other people and start making a difference in your neighbourhood."
  • BigBarn - Find local organic veggie producers (UK)
  • Smart Mobs - weblog about flash mobs (see also [1])
  • Foresight Exchange - prediction of ideas and outcomes
  • Open Lean - "sets of practices and processes for managing sustainable open-source development projects."
  • DLP Distributed Library Project is a website which creates a distributed library of people's books, videos, and music. The project is an experiment in creating community and sharing information within a town or city. Users create accounts complete with bios and interest enumerations, then list the books and videos that they own. Those users are then free to browse the books that others have listed - sorted by proximity, interest, and book commonality. If a book or video is available, a user can check it out directly from the owner.
  • Yahoo Groups - not much interlinking between groups, but still, a generally useful resource
  • Hotmail - the largest web-based e-mail (Webmail) provider from Microsoft. Also has some nice cross-browser DHTML in recent versions




Text collaboration / CMS

  • SubEthaEdit - collaborative editor for Mac
  • Plone - "a user-friendly and powerful content management system"
    • CPS - a similar, and slightly more powerful in some ways, zope based CMS
  • via3 - uninnovative and poor user interface, but a useful litmus test of collaborative features
  • CritSuite at - "CritSuite consists of three pieces of integrated software which allow individuals to comment on and view existing hypertext documents (CritLink), to navigate the Web using a graphical interface (CritMap), and to archive e-mail exchanges using the features of hypertext (CritMail)."
  • - Ian Clarke's collaborative editing system, changes have to be approved individually

Open resources

Personal information organization

  • Singlefile - "Singlefile is an easy-to-use web-based service that helps you organize the books you own, the books you are reading, the books you've read and the books you want to read." - commercial
  • OSA Foundation - Chandler - revolutionary e-mail/PIM client


  • - commercial search of reference books
  • - "a location-to-URL reverse directory"
  • Google Labs - experimental stuff by Google
    • Google Toolbar - official search toolbar by Google
    • Google News - an automated collection from over hundreds of news sources on the net
  • Technorati Cosmos - "Cosmos allows you to find what's new in the blogging universe, and find out who's linking to whom. Simply type in a URL of a blog, website, or interesting article on the web, and Cosmos will tell you which bloggers are linking to the URL."
  • Open Directory Project - like Yahoo directory, but with collaborative editing
  • Search IRC - search engine for IRC
  • WayBackMachine - the internet archive, enabling us to browse through over 30 billion web pages archived from 1996 to a few months ago...
  • E-Street - "a free online business directory providing a completely different and revolutionary way to search for places to visit, shop, eat, drink, party and stay in London."

Blogs / syndication

  • - commercial weblog hosting
  • - the other big commercial weblog hosting
  • Atom Roadmap - lists most of the trendy blog applications
  • AllConsuming "is a website that watches weblogs for books that they're talking about, and displays the most popular ones on an hourly basis"
  • Googlehk - The Internet Googlehk hosting
  • Topic Exchange - "The Internet Topic Exchange hosts topic channels, public archives of weblog posts on defined topics"
  • Bloggers Parliament - "a flexible assembly of bloggers who are interested in finding and selecting from the blogosphere or from any other source - including their own thoughts - feasible solutions to current problems on both the local and the global scale."
  • Blogshares - "fantasy stock market for weblogs"
  • designhk - The Internet Topic Exchange hosts topic
  • NewsIsFree - "collects headlines from 7789 sources around the web and lets you manage them in new ways."
  • Blogrolling - "BlogRolling is a one-stop linklist manager for your blog or journal, helping you manage your ever-evolving linklist with ease."
  • NewsReaders - fairly good directory of RSS/news readers
  • Wordpress Excellent CMS, open source, with Atom Syndication. Is the official b2 sucessor.

IRC + bots

Content discovery

  • Musicmobs - A music based social network that uses collaborative filtering and a web of users to help you find new music.
  • AudioScrobbler - "is a computer system that builds up a detailed profile of your musical taste. After installing an Audioscrobbler Plugin, your computer sends the name of every song you play to the Audioscrobbler Server."
  • [2] site allowing to hear to radioin music stream generated automatically based on your musi tastes and on comparision with data from othe users. Based on AudioScrobbler.
  • Electronic Music 411 - a thriving music community
  • EchoCloud - "Enter the name of a musical artist that you like. Echocloud will then search a large database and return a list of similar artists that you may also like. Echocloud works by crawling peer to peer networks in order to discover correlations between artists. "
  • iRATE - downloading client for freely available MP3s with integrated rating engine that connects to a central DB (helps you find music which you are allegedly likely to like)
  • MovieLens - rating-based discovery system for movies
  • Pointcast - the best of breed from the days of "push" technology

Social bookmarks

  • StumbleUpon - browser bar tool for website discovery based on user recommendations
  • furl - save, search and share your personal web
  • Simpy - save, tag, index, search, and share your bookmarks.

Fingerprinting and metadata

Design/Art collaboration

  • - art submission + voting and community
  • Open Source Web Design - free home page layout
  • KDE-Look - very big theme community
  • DeskMod - "the largest desktop modification site on the Internet, is completely non-profit, and features over 25,000 uploads and 60,000 members"
  • Oekaki - link goes to Google search. Little pieces of art that are typically created through a Java applet, often combined with discussion forums. There are huge oekaki communities.
  • CSS Zen Garden - good examples for the power of CSS

Open source development / version control

  • gforge - "an open-source collaborative software development tool, which allows you to organize and manage any number of software development projects."
    • ourproject gforge based social software development (gforge with integrated MoinMoin wiki)
  • monotone - "a free, distributed version control system. it provides fully disconnected operation, manages complete tree versions, keeps its state in a local transactional database, supports overlapping branches and extensible metadata, exchanges work over plain network protocols, performs history-sensitive merging, and delegates trust functions to client-side RSA certificates."
  • Subversion - "The goal of the Subversion project is to build a version control system that is a compelling replacement for CVS in the open source community."
  • bookdesign - bookdesign hotteset
  • Open Source Experts - collaborative funding for open source software
  • industrialarts - for open industrial arts

Open content / licensing

  • Creative Commons - a simplified open content license construction kit, allowing more flexible usage rules than Copyright, encouraging collaboration or distribution.


  • ManyOne browser - "transforms the experience of the Web from flat pages and text into a living, visual universe of information"
  • IdeaGraph - "easy-to-use software for creating visual maps of ideas"
  • Visual Thesaurus - "a unique, and remarkably beautiful, approach to presenting the results of a word lookup. Type in a word, click go, and you're rewarded with a colorful, interactive map of the meaning of your word."



  • OWN - a decent web application to compile your own publication with the ability to output PDF and eventually have it automatically printed, folded, and snail-mailed out according to your needs.


  • Active2 - the successor to the Indymedia CMS
  • Gaian Demoracies - "a system of self-organised network governance"
  • BlogCoop - "Blog Cooperatives are businesses jointly owned and operated by their members" - not in active use yet
  • token_word - experimental online literature system, deep quotation, deep reuse, usable micropayments
  • Digital Imprimatur - an excellent overview of the "evil" potentials of what we will be creating
  • Small World - the small world experiment