Tim Bray: Stop the Metaphors!
Fully Disagree. Metaphors are perfectly good thing to have, in a P.T. Barnum sense. And, it is working. Go with it.
The tipping point was Google Maps. The tip of the iceberg was AJAX, and that’s the bandwagon that a number of people have jumped on. And on balance that’s a good thing as people who previously had clung unto the idea of a fat client are starting to let go.
Of course, the rest of the iceberg was that Google had simply tiled the Earth. In so doing, they converted a single web service (call me with a bunch of information, and I will provide you with a custom result) into a large number of individually addressable, cacheable, and scalable web resources.
What we need is more elevator pitches, not less. When I see somebody who wants to demo for me their latest “REST based” web service, the first thing I ask is; “do you support ETags?”
And when people are trying to grasp what the web is if it isn’t a bunch of web services, remind them that the web isn’t a service (i.e., a verb) at all, it fundamentally is a space (i.e., a noun).