The Internet is a powerful tool. Today, many of us rely heavily on the Internet for businesses, academic purposes or simply for our daily tasks. It has undeniably become a necessity to us, as it serves various functions such as communication, entertainment and so.
The progress of Internet over the years have sparked off terms such as Web1.0, Web2.0 and Web3.o. John Markoff of the NY Times suggested that the web has reached or is reaching the third generation, hence being termed Web3.0. Also known as a semantic web, this generation of the web acts as a global database which enhances the communication process between human and computer. Some even speculate the possibility of a 3D web with a greater degree of information connectivity, thus focused on the idea of data integration and the ability for computers to conduct “smart search”, providing more accurate results in a shorter amount of time.
This leads us to wondering what the next step might be for the Internet – Web4.0. There are certain speculations and predictions about the fourth generation of the web, which is like a symbiotic web that enhances the interaction and connection between human and computer. Tom Jenkins said that it is expected to be an “immersive… virtual world”, and Michael Green shares the same view on its potential to be immersive through the use of virtual worlds, simulations and augmented reality. It is predicted that when such a technology arrives, it will be used in education, changing the learning experience for future generations to come.
A business strategist, Daniel Burrus, described a small scenario of the possible interaction between a human and a machine of Web4.0:
“Good morning. You’re flying to Boston today. Take a raincoat, it’s raining. By the way, that fight you were taking, it’s already been canceled. Don’t worry about it. There was a mechanical. I’ve already booked you on a new one. I’ll tell you about on the way to the airport. But remember you’re going to exercise every day and I’m here to remind you that you’re going to exercise.”
And you might say, “I don’t know if I want to exercise today,” and it’ll show you a nude profile of yourself.
And you’ll say, “You know what, I think I’m going to exercise today.”
While no one knows when the Internet will finally evolve into Web3.0 or Web4.0 or who will be the first to make it happen, it is believed that such a day will certainly come and when it does, it will be game-changing.