This week’s issue of BusinessWeek has a four-part special report entitled “CEO Guide to Mashups” by Rachael King. The articles cover the enterprise mashup space, consumer mashups, mobile and banking mashups.
- Building a Business on a Mashup: “These combos of disparate programs or Web applications are in the hobbyist phase, but entrepreneurs are seeking to turn them into moneymakers.” The lead example given is the fun with a purpose Where’s Tim Hibbard? in which you can see any time of day or night where Tim is located. Why? Because he always has a GPS with him and it’s mapped onto a Google Map (see below). It’s a marketing mashup — he works for a GPS software provider. The article notes that his mashup is currently the fourth all-time popular mashup on ProgrammableWeb and includes brief quote from me. The other mashup included here is Frucall, the service that lets you do Internet price comparisons while at a store by entering bar code information into your cell phone.
- When Companies Do the Mash: The enterprise mashup story, subtitled “Corporations from IBM to Google to E*Trade are jumping onboard the trend of mixing and matching software from different sources”. Examples include someone using Microsoft Office Accounting with eBay and PayPal integration, IBM’s QED Wiki, and vendors like Nexaweb, JackBe, and ActiveGrid. One example from PGP Corp mashes existing customer records with data from Dunn & Bradstreet via an unnamed API, but could be this one we have listed here. It also cites issues that companies need to consider including security, reliability and scalability.
- E*Trade is Banking on Web Services: CIO Greg Framke talks about mashups and how using them will help the online trading and financial services company stay competitive.
- Asia’s Mobile Mashup Free-For-All: “Across the region, carriers and handset makers are locked in a race to pack the most features and functions into cell phones.”
- CEO Guide to Mashups: Tip Sheet: “Think you’re ready to experiment with mashups? Before you start, consider these tips for a successful rollout.”
- Last.FM: Mashing to the Music: “The hub of Europe’s music community may be the London streaming site, thanks to its mashups with MySpace, YouTube, and others.”
The article includes the ProgrammableWeb stat of 2.84 new mashups per day here over past six months, although in the last week it’s been more than twice that at 6.29 per day. There were 17 added this weekend alone. See here for the latest ones.
One sentence caught my attention was “In many cases, employees won’t even realize they’re using mashups.” Indeed, as mashups become more commonplace this will be increasingly true, users will just be using online services and won’t know or care how many sources have been mixed to make it happen.