I was putting back my head back in my books and documents, rereading things and trying figuring out what will come next after 5 weeks off.
Then I re-read the transcript of a talk give by Tim Berners-Lee at a W3C meeting in London the 3 December 1997. He was talking about the evolution of the Web, started to talk about the concept of the Semantic Web and what it could brings to the Web.
Then I read:
“[…] One crazy aspect of the current Web use setup is that the user who wishes to publish something has to decide whether to use mailing lists, newsgroups, or the Web. The best choice in a particular case depends on the anticipated demand and likely readership pattern. A mistake can be costly. It is not always easy for a person to anticipate the demand for a particular Web page. […]”
It was 9 years ago, and is always up to date.
The idea Tim had in mind was probably to use semantic web technologies to publish texts: that way any software (agents) could use that published content the way they like.
The good news is that it is what is happening with the emergence of the Web Feeds like technologies. It is a good experience but there are much more to do. What would be great is to extent that Blogging (publishing) / Aggregating (reading) trend to everything else: news, shopping catalogs, anything else that is publishable and useful to somebody.
That way, anybody would be able to use one easy-to-use tool, to publish anything, to anyone (or any web service) over the Web without caring about anything else than the content he is publishing.
Utopia? I do not think so. A lot of work for sure but not utopia.