“The Internet’s “third wave” involves the development and application of grids, repositories, web services and new approaches to sharing and collaborating. Applications in learning, health, government and business will be central. “[…]
The standards and prools that lie behind the third wave are themselves somewhat complex, and many are still evolving rapidly. They include what are called “web services” architectures, peer-to-peer applications, so-called “grid computing”, the “open source movement”, repository and meta-tagging standards, and the concept of “the information commons”.
One interesting characteristic shared by many of these component elements of the third wave is that they involve distributed “communities of practice” or “communities of interest”. Geneticists collaborating in the creation and application of linked databases, companies electronically completing purchasing agreements, teachers building collaborative repositories of their multimedia lessons, are all “communities of practice” and share a set of interests. Third-wave standards give these communities not only productivity-enhancing efficiencies from reduced duplication of effort, but also a quantum leap forward into a new generation of collaborative applications. This is the essence of the third wave