_It’s no surprise then that ‘enterprise software’ as it is installed and configured in many large corporations is generally massive, anonymous, byzantine in structure and workings, indifferent or hostile to individual needs, offensively neutured in all aspects of it’s user experience, and often changed arbitrarily to align with a power calculus determined by a select few who operate at great remove from the majority of the people who use the environment on a daily basis. After all, that is the nature of communication in many large (and quite a few small and medium sized) corporations.
That enterprise software is bad - excruciatingly bad, if you’ve tried to enter expenses using a generic installation of PeopleSoft or Siebel - is hardly news. But it is interesting that David from 37Signals, Peter Merholz of Adaptive Path, Jared Spool of UIE, and many others who are less visible but still important in directing the evolution of the Internet, would all say in one form or another that they see enterprise software as on the outs.
It’s interesting because I think it highlights a shift in the realm in which the Web community sees itself as relevant. If there were ever a potential enterprise platform, it is the Web - the new Web, Web 2.0, whatever you want to call the emerging informnation environment that is global, ubiquitous, semantically integrated, socially informed and / or collaborative, architected to provide readily consumable services, etc. But aside from occasional bouts of megalomania, and potential success stories like Salesforce.com, the enterprise realm has been pro-forma outside the boundaries of the possible - until now…_