I hate HTML. And not only from the technical point of view. It is deeper. You see, a lot of persons who have conceived Internet, and WWW and HTML… Their principles and goals are very far from the most folks who want to do something in and with Internet.
Well, may be it is my personal bias, because I have worked for a web company for seven years. But most people who came to us just wanted to do business in Internet. Simple, trivial business. Adam Smith business. To provide products and services for their customers, charge money or show ads for that, and use their Internet application as business platform. That is: not changing world to the better. Not doing no evil. Not publishing hyperlinked scientific papers. And not dealing with stolen properties. Just doing business.
And for doing business, the Internet as we know it, is not very reasonable. Let’s play a simple game. If I were in charge and could reinvent the Internet, with all the knowledge I have today, how would I design it?
First of, I would ensure there is a landing page. You go online, and you always land to my page. Not to a search engine. And you are not entering any URLs. You can’t. All you can, when you come to my Internet, is to open my landing page. Which is technically not avoidable or skipable. If you ever saw the start page of Amazon, you know what kind of landing page I mean. From there, you can search for products you want to consume or activities you want to participate, either using a catalog or free text search. I would employ a department of editors controlling every pixel of that page, and making money on its screen real estate, on the order the items appear in catalogs, anonymized personal profiles, at similar stuff.
As for products, there will be a largest possible variety of them: movies, music, books, photos, cars, homes, jewelry, apparel and all sort of any physical items, news, blog posts, jokes,.. Same for activities: games, chat rooms, social networks, timelines, diaries, matchmaking, genealogy searches… All items would have similar pricing and will have virtually no ordering user experience, because, for a small fee on each financial transaction, I will take care for your payments, and just charge you once a month together with your Internet bill. I will not allow providers of products and services in my Internet to charge you offline. After all, safe, instantious and cheap payments are also in your interests.
I wouldn’t ask you to pay any other usage fee except for the items bought online. You will never have to learn words traffic, gigabyte, kbit/s and won’t pay trafic- or time-based fees as they only distract and prevent you from consuming. Perhaps you would need to pay a small monthly lease for the modem.
As for the such details like the programming language to implement Internet user experience, I would ensure it can render exactly what I want and how I want, on every your device, all the way down to subpixel level. I would ensure it can fully and directly utilize all your computing power, including full access to bare hardware. And I wouldn’t have many security issues with that, because, naturally, I would technically allow only approved and signed apps in my Internet, and developers would pay me for the priviledge developing them, enjoying in exchange the full freedom of bare hardware access and the most immersive UI and interaction technology available. Well, full freedom, as long as they comply with my terms and conditions… And I would for example force them to develop separate UIs for touch, 2-foot and 10-foot. All for your happy and comfortable consuming experience.
Does it remind you of something? Perhaps, of the dubious iScreen I’ve predicted? When it will appear, it won’t be just TV set killer. It will be killer of the Internet as we know it. And I’m saying “when” and not “if”. Let’s look what has happened today:
- Apple has announced a quad-core GPU in the new iPad allowing them to attract more interesting games on their platform. Samsung and other handset manufacturers have already done the same, or will surely do it soon.
- Google has announced Google Play, the Android Market replacement, which is “an integrated destination for apps, books, movies, and music, accessible to users on Android devices and to anyone on the Web”.
- Microsoft has their gaming bases covered with XBOX and are currently adding portals to consume movies and TV content with the pace of one per month or so.
You better start planning what are you going to do in the shine new Internet world – today.