Steve Rubel asks whether "anyone among the tech influential spend any significant time on Yahoo anymore?" And then talks about how My Yahoo abandons the geeks.
Isn't that the point? Yahoo wants growth. There aren't enough geeks to fuel that growth. Perhaps catering to the geeks is why My Yahoo only 50 million users. Web 2.0 is important. It'll be more important when it's something you just do and not a technology concept in search of a neat phrase and a definition to debate.
Rubel's main issue is that Yahoo didn't run with widgets. Whatever. There's no market in that yet. If I didn't take the time to personalize a Yahoo page am I really going to screw with a widget?
We in the blogosphere are like a bunch of goldfish in a bowl. We look at each other than forget there are bigger markets out there. Widgets aren't going to create mass adoption of a personalized home page. It may land a few more geeks who will court a few more geeks. In the end, that's a recipe to get another 300 users if you're lucky. Where's the return?
Yahoo has plenty of cool geeky things (Pipes for instance) but why make My Yahoo more complicated than it has to be. My Yahoo has a different audience completely. Yahoo can own geeky things like del.icio.us, learn from it and then create mass adoption when its easy. Del.icio.us is no where near easy as we speak.
Dave Winer hits on the real goal, which is to make software so easy that it works for everyone. He points out Yahoo's stock analysis tools, which were rolled out a few months ago. Yahoo's new charts are a nice little bit of software that close the gap with Stockcharts.com and MarketWatch's BigCharts. Since I'm more financial geek than tech geek (geek hybrid anyone?) I notice these things. And Yahoo didn't make me do anything--move a box, create a feed, etc--to get them.