I spent a little while looking at the Norad and Google Earth Santa tracking features with my seven year old son on Christmas Eve.
To my suprise his main question to each in turn was "How does this site make money". I did not know whether I should laugh or cry ;-)
His question reminded me of the discussion of 'Web 3.0' on Phil Wainewright's ZDnet blog:
Probably the most crucial feature missing from Web 2.0 can be summed up in one word: revenue.No one has figured out how anyone pays for this stuff Ever wondered why virtually every Web 2.0 wannabee is offering their service for free? The reason is no one has figured out how anyone pays for this stuff. The only thing keeping it going at present is the sheer enthusiasm of the entrepreneurs themselves, with the lucky ones getting funded by VCs who hope to cash in when they flip the concept to a well-heeled trade buyer like Google, Microsoft or eBay. Even the big guys are funding their beta services out of their own pockets, hoping the money will eventually start coming in but with no certainty yet of exactly how. [� The missing feature at the heart of Web 3.0 | Software as services | ZDNet.com]Image via the Google Earth Blog.