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Lightweight Models and Cost –Effective Scalability

May 15, 2011

Web 2.0 applications have developed along way since traditional standard web applications in that many organizations are realizing how a simple startup company in a garage can be one of the most successful companies due to its small employee size, this relates to the theory of Lighteight models and cost effective scalability which talks about “doing more with less” instead of getting big fast.

You start small and stay small thereby keeping staff costs to a minimum while ensuring you have enough employee’s to get the work done, it’s an interesting concept which has been around for quite along time and has been often used in other industry s however applying it to Web 2.0 applications is clearly the best choice as web 2.0 applications require very little startup costs and can be developed quite fast.

An example of an application using lightweight models and cost effective scalability would have to be Digg.

Digg is a pretty simple idea which allows you to digg up other stories which can be viewed by everyone, the model they have used in doing this is very user driven which harnessing the collective intelligence as the users provide the content and vote up or down on an article.

It also has a interesting revenue scheme, which is based on build the community, aka get alot of users and the ads will come, obviously as the site became more popular more companies decided to publish ad’s on the site increasing the revenue, when you think about it, Digg only really provided the framework for the users to publish content and rate the content which in turn increased the popularity of the site which helped draw more ad’s to the site.

This amazing web 2.0 application started out in 2004 with $2000, a single hosted server for $99 a month, which increased to 90 servers in 2006 and over 100 million page views everyday, at this time they only had 15 employees in the company, which is an excellent example doing more with less, but with saying that there is always risk involved with this, which reminds me of a quote from the movie Anti Trust.

” Gary Winston once said that any teenager in a garage could put him out of business. Is that what you’ve done?”

This quote directly refers to lightweight models as any one could simply develop a web 2.0 application as there is basically no capital required only the skills to develop.


Tim  Oreilly
Startup Review


From → Web 2.0

  1. I like your post, what you said in youtr post. It is great that “any one could simply develop a web 2.0 application as there is basically no capital required only the skills to develop”. Therefore, the application you introuduced, digg could start with the small investing despite there is a risk. I think this is a good example of this week’s pattern.

  2. empecee permalink

    It’s this pattern that excites me the most about web 2.0. I love the idea that someone with a bit of imagiation can develope something in thier bedroom or garage which has the potential to become a world wide sensation.

    Oh how i do love a good rags to riches story.

    Great post, nice and concise and easy to follow to.

    • This pattern also excites me for the same reasons! i mean, whats the harm in spending 6months developing a web app which could make you rich?

  3. darkwaterhorses permalink

    Neat and simple post mate, Digg is certainly an interesting application, I know a friend who is simply crazy about it, he visits the site on a daily basis. Truly a perfect example of the pattern, does Digg collaborate all the news feed from across the globe or just news broadcast within America?

    Founded, developed and invested by Americans, does Digg ever feed in news from smaller countries like Australia, New Zealand, Scotland, Ireland, Canada etc. I do believe that the new feeds with the highest diggs gets broadcast first in the list. So because American has about 350 million people, wouldn’t there be more people digging american news than news from smaller countries like Australia (22 million) [Australian news] or Scotland (5 million) [Scottish news]?

  4. Thanks darkwater, i agree due to US population base US news will get the highest hits and therefore be first in the list, however they do feed news from smaller counties, but it’s hard to see as more people end up digging american news, it is an interesting concept

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