Web design is about relationships with people. The web was designed, not merely to display documents, but to link and relate areas of expertise amongst people. In that light, Web 2.0, and all that means, is about a social construct, a way of relating between people.
That is why websites should start and end with people. Web standards deal with people in the context of technology, and if we don't use that technology correctly, we fail to engage the people we are seeking to reach. I've seen many sites claim to be W3C valid, but a simple machine validation shows how often the client's front page, the first visible sign a person sees when they browse, actually fails to complete this task.
Technology, in and of itself, remains only a tool by which to communicate. Through the use of blogs, wikis, aggregation, social networking and other technologies solutions can be delivered that deal holistically with the problems of technology. Hopefully, with the advancement of the semantic web, this will continue.
Most of these thoughts are based on Molly Holzschlag's keynote, with a few additions here and there from post-drinks discussion.
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“The primary text - the poem, picture, piece of music - is a phenomena of freedom.”