"Come on and walk right in, set right down.
Daddy, let your mind roll on." - Rooftop Singers (music)
In Wikinomics, authors Don Tapscott and Anthony D. Williams describe an economy in which "ordinary people and firms are linking up in imaginative new ways to drive innovation and success". Through "peer production", consumers can join in collaborative ventures, helping to create new technology tools and applications. "Individuals now share knowledge, computing power, bandwidth, and other resources to create a wide array of free and open-source goods and services that anyone can use or modify."
With so much available for the taking, how can companies show a profit? Tapscott and Williams quote Tim Bray, director of Web technologies at Sun Microsystems, who says that "expanding markets create new opportunities.” Knowledge producers must assess the market, then "innovate, differentiate, and compete".
Which brings us to InviteShare. TechCrunch founder and editor Michael Arrington was tired of having to scrounge up invitations to beta sites for his readers. Jeff Broderick, a computer programmer and web designer at EkinDesigns, created the solution: a site that connects users who want access to new Internet offerings to subscribers who have extra invitations to share. Start-ups benefit from increased traffic and exposure on the website.
Broderick created a new product (reviewed here), Arrington solved his problem, technophiles will be able to try out the beta tools they lust after and fledgling companies get some feedback and PR.
"And I think to myself, what a wonderful world..." -Louis Armstrong (George Weiss / Bob Thiele)