Not as Web-savvy as you’d like to be? Well, GoDaddy just solved that problem with the release of SmartSpace -- an inexpensive, no-skills-needed tool for building instant Web sites complete with your popular social media widgets of choice.
No Skills, Lots of Frills
The steps for using SmartSpace are as follows:
# Register a domain name
# Upload the kind of content you’d like to display (text, photos, videos, etc.)
# Watch your Web site materialize
Really, it’s that simple.
After you register your URL, your Web site comes alive via a content generation control panel that allows you to add ready-made social media material. Choose from:
* Blog: Add a blog to your page and SmartSpace offers a variety of pre-made templates to configure
* Podcast: Host your own audio
* Chat Room: Have text conversations directly on your site using this application. The most work you have to do is choose how it’s displayed, and after that you’re set with full administrative controls.
* Photo Gallery: The SmartSpace photo application allows you to host images on your site publicly or privately without using Flickr. But what if you love Flickr, you ask? That’s OK, too; because SmartSpace includes a Flickr widget that will either display images from the account of your choice or images that match the customizable assigned tags.
* Info from social networks like Facebook and MySpace, or any other site with an RSS feed --aggregate your Web activity!
SmartSpace the Shmoo
It’s a Web site, a Social Network, a Communication Device, a Meme Powerhouse...
SmartSpace can pretty much be anything you want it to. In addition to the regular blog and podcast sites, SmartSpace allows you to create a Web of social content as well. The end product (after all the hard work that goes into dragging and dropping) looks something like an iGoogle, Netvibes or My Yahoo! homepage, but for all the world to see.
The kicker offered by SmartSpace on top of the very minimal requirement of tech savvy is obviously the ability to house all of your favorite content under your own domain name, with the option to include widgetized instant interaction functionality, making it all the more fun and fancy.
How Smart Is It, Really?
There are a lot of things that make SmartSpace a kind of an amazing idea. Considering all of the people out there who aren’t keen on how to build a Web site, plus the growing popularity of personalized corners of the Web, SmartSpace could potentially attract quite a large audience.
It’s not like similar ideas haven’t already been presented. Social Platform and the short-lived OpenServing , which became obsolete in January 2008, are just a couple of examples. With half of them already out of business, it’s obvious that GoDaddy is relying heavily on the amount of options they provide to keep SmartSpace afloat.
The Economics of Web 2.0
Options, however, are coming in by the truckload. And, as we've said before, we believe Web 2.0 may be starting to fold under the weight of them all.
Predictably, as multiple solutions for the same problem are released, each individual solution will decrease in price. It is because of this understanding of the way economics work, that GoDaddy is, perhaps, making a bad move by using affordability and the convenience of their click-and-create technology to market their product. After all, with as many similar tools that are already in circulation, like LiveBar to name another, what about SmartSpace could really persuade someone to switch over from the service they more than likely already have?
On the other hand, it was stated that 93% of Americans want companies to be social, with 60% claiming they interact with companies on social media sites. In this respect, tools like SmartSpace ma benefit the startups looking to create cohesive and lucrative Web sites with little time and manpower and in a timely manner. However, what about the regular guy just out there who wants to find new ways to shamelessly promote himself? We are more likely to believe that SmartSpace could just be a new avenue into a black hole of inactive URLs rather than the new “it” tool to owning your Web space.