As Google CEO Eric Schmidt hinted during his conversation with John Battelle at the Web 2.0 Expo last week, Google aims to use its technology to optimize advertising across all media. Google?s Book Search, Docs & Spreadsheets, Picasa, Video/YouTube, and Base are just some of the services that empower consumers to either digitize assets or bring existing digital assets online. Media companies play a major role as well, digitizing TV, radio, out-of-home media, and print media ? both the content and the advertising. It?s the digitization coupled with Web-based access that makes integration possible.

IDC predicts that by 2008, the volume of information will surpass the volume of available storage. This information overload will lead consumers to place greater trust in the process of discovery, rather than just search, for finding content; this will also usher some of the more futuristic visions of the semantic web. Not all developments will be forward progress. More digital assets spanning all media will lead to more data and metrics, but also overanalysis and data fatigue. Concerns over privacy issues and respecting consumers will ultimately provide users with more security and control, but not before a number of gaffes heighten the need for such issues to be properly addressed.

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