While playing with AjaxAMP v3.0 the other day I couldnt help thinking that the shift to Internet based applications is going to fundamentally change how media is created, promoted, used and distributed. From Pandora's approach to music discovery to Jumpcuts efforts at online video editing, there are few areas of the media value chain not challenged by a new service or application available via the web.
AjaxAMP is a tool that gives the user control over their music collection by letting anyone access Winamp from one computer while using a web browser on another (listen to my winamp). Despite the version 3.0 moniker, AjaxAMP is still very much a work in progress. Besides having limited functionality it was fairly temperamental, it crashed twice, but it worked. I could control my Winamp, playing the music on my PC, from anywhere with an Internet connection. No hardware and no elaborate server set-ups. All I'd need is a display and a fat pipe.
Friend to this site and serial giant killer Michael Robertson has launched a new company called eyespot, which in classic Michael Robertson style is positioned as the successor to iMovie and MovieMaker. Even if his grand vision doesnt come to pass, each new video editing and sharing site ups the ante in an online arms race for features and functionality.
Some super smart techie out there might make the point that applications like Orb have been offering the ability to control media on your desktop via the web for years. Of course It's true that Orb has been around for a while but its efforts seem more focused on remaining relevant in the space, their recent partnership with Diamond Multimedia seems more to highlight the waning importance of its cumbersome desktop client/server approach.
Imagine a world where you have dynamic Internet-based applications that provide the same functionality as traditional desktop apps along with anywhere, anytime access to all the media you care to create, edit, share and sell. AJAX seems to be the language that is making this world possible and so media companies that want to survive in this world need to take heed.