November 21, 2005

Interview with Tim O’Reilly

The October 2005 issue of Wired magazine features an interview with O’Reilly publishing founder Tim O’Reilly and offers some nice synergy between computer science & library science (or at least publishing).

My favorite story: Tim O’Reilly gave copies of the Whole Internet User’s Guide and Catalog to every member of Congress, then went to DC to preach the gospel of the Internet (in the early 1990s) to congressional aides. A guy from the House IT department pulls O’Reilly aside and says “We don’t want you to get the aides too excited about the Internet, because we’re not going to give it to them.” Hmmm. Some things never change! Of course, O’Reilly got them fired up anyway.

Apparently “O’Reilly’s radar” is as potent now as it was then. Here are some things on his radar now:

- The Participation Era, as embodied by wikis, open API’s in places like Amazon & Google, and RSS.
- VOIP “disruption”, where Voice Over IP “completely undermines” the telecos.
- DIY – see O’Reilly’s Make magazine.
- Geography-based Mash-ups – merging geographic data like apartment rentals with maps from places like Google Maps.
… and more

If you like O’Reilly’s computer books, or you’re interested in the next phase of the Internet, check out this article.

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