I was attending and presenting in the WWW2006 conference last month, and haven’t been able to publish a trip report since then… Bad me!
My last WWW Conference was three years ago and didn’t leave me with great memories, but this year’s edition was certainly much better than any other WWW Conference I’ve been to, and getting close to be as inspiring as XTech was last year – I haven’t been to XTech this year, so I don’t know how good it was, but read some positive reports on the 2006 edition as well.
Clearly, one of the major improvements for me was the extension of the previous editions’ developers day into a developers track that ran during the whole conference, rather than being concentrated at the very end; I thought it made a rather nice balance to the more theoretical and academic side of the other tracks.
My own contribution to the conference was the set up and animation of a session in the W3C track on the Mobile Web, and esp. on the prospects of what the future of the Mobile Web might be, entitled somewhat provocatively
What the Mobile Web 2.0 will be?; this was the occasion to present updates on the W3C Mobile Web Initiative, but more proeminently to listen at the views of six panelists on what might make the Mobile Web the next big thing for the Web, much like “Web 2.0” is the currently used moniker to refer to exciting stuff on the Web.
While the opinions of the panelists were quite diverse, some trends emerged out of the discussions: access to the Web on mobile devices can be of a huge importance in granting Web access to a much larger variety of people (esp. in developing countries, where access to a connected computer remains a luxury), should allow users creations and interactions in a much broader context; Rolan Geisler from Nokia also alluded to the development of a core Open Source platform for mobile devices as a way to help the industry grow the Mobile Web into a scalable development platform (matching their announcement of the open source release of the S60 browser).
In any case, it was really nice to see all the energy there was around the Mobile Web, during this session and elsewhere; hopefully our ongoing work in the Mobile Web Initiative will allow us to build on this energy.