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Five great Web 2.0 websites and services

Web startups offering new and unusual services

We've rounded up five internet startups that are putting a unique spin on Web 2.0, offering exciting products and services.

There's no doubt that Web 2.0 is the buzz word of the tech industry at the moment. But are any companies actually putting a new spin on Web 2.0 and offering new and unusual websites and services?

Well, yes, it seems. At the Web 2.0 Summit which took place in the US last week, several internet startups displayed their take on the Web 2.0 concept. We've rounded up five that you should be watching.

Everyscape

The best way to understand what Everyscape is trying to do is to think of Google Street View, then add the ability to virtually leave the street and explore the insides of the shops, restaurants and other businesses adjacent to it. The company actually goes out into the streets with its cameras and takes GPS-tagged pictures, including from inside the businesses.

So, using Everyscape, you could look up a restaurant on the internet, check out the menu, then go into the 3D representation of the place to see whether you like the vibe of the place. You can also send this experience to a friend and post notes inside the virtual environment ('if the place is crowded. meet me right here by the bar at 8:30').

Everyscape was also demonstrated on the iPhone; the use of the touchscreen gestures to navigate through various Everyscape locations was truly impressive. Whether it is Everyscape or some other company, this method of representing real places digitally on the internet is something I'm sure we'll all use regularly in the future.

GoodGuide

GoodGuide is founded on the idea that we know very little about the products we buy at the supermarket, beyond what the makers tell us with their marketing mumbo jumbo.

So GoodGuide is an easy-to-use website where you can punch in a given product, and get back the chemical make-up of the product, the green credibility of the company that makes it for example is the manufacturing process eco-friendly, and the social consciousness of the company that makes it ('is the product made with child labour?').

GoodGuide scores products on all of these things (providing specific data in each area), and a composite score. What really turned me on was the new iPhone app, which the company showed off during their Launch Pad presentation. This means that you can get all the GoodGuide information on your phone when you are actually in the aisles of the grocery store. And the design of the iPhone app just couldn't have been simpler. It starts with general product types - only US brands right now - then lets the user quickly move through the hierarchical menu system to get to the specific product they're considering.

NEXT PAGE: Even more Web 2.0 companies to watch

  1. Web startups offering new and unusual services
  2. Even more Web 2.0 companies to watch
  3. Sungevity

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