Mashups & Social Networking

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A mashup is a web-based application that combines content and functionality from a variety of sources using technologies including RSS and AJAX (Asynchronous JavaScript And XML) [1]. The term ‘mashup’ implies easy, fast integration, frequently using open APIs and data sources to produce results that were not the original reason for producing the raw source data [2]. An example of a mashup is the use of cartographic data to add location information to real estate data, thereby creating a new and distinct web API that was not originally provided by either source. Types of mashups

There are many types of mashups, such as consumer mashups, data mashups, and enterprise mashups [2]. Consumer mashups, as its name says aimed at consumers, combine different forms of media from multiple sources and combine them into a single graphical interface. Examples include Google Maps applications, iGuide and Radioclouds. Data mashups combine similar types of media and information from multiple sources into a single representation. CLEARMAP is a mashup web application by the Chicago Police Department which integrates the department’s database of reported crimes with Google Maps in order to help stop crime in areas and warn citizens of areas where the crime rate is high [3]. Enterprise mashups focus data into a single presentation and allow for collaborative action among businesses and developers. This works well for an Agile Development project, which requires collaboration between the Developers and Customer proxy for defining and implementing the business requirements. Enterprise Mashups are secure, visually rich web applications that expose actionable information from diverse internal and external information sources. Mashup business scenarios

Mashup adoption is accelerating in the business environment. Business Mashups are useful for integrating business and data services, as Business Mashups technologies provide the ability to develop new integrated services quickly, to combine internal services with external or personalized information, and to make these services tangible to the business user through user-friendly Web browser interfaces [4]. The increasing pace of mashup use is related to two business parameters: revenue and costs. As always, businesses need to grow their revenue through increased sales and services. In today’s economy, to secure existing revenue streams, businesses need to stabilize customer loyalty. Similarly, the other parameter that justifies investment in enterprise mashups is the need to reduce operational costs. Minimizing the use of IT resources for application development or optimizing IT professionals in their daily tasks can both contribute to the businesses in a positive way. Businesses want to have more control to address their own needs and to limit their dependence on IT organizations. Similarly, IT organizations that are feeling the pressure to deliver applications to businesses more quickly with less funding, are utilizing mashups for non-mission-critical applications because they require less expensive skill sets and can be turned around in less time. IT organizations use mashups to supplement less Web savvy business users who are not able to fully author their own mashup applications. The companies that are leveraging the use of mashups are also considering some common goals along with the two business drivers, revenue and cost. These goals include the following: •Improve decision making by management

Optimize productivity of human resources
Demonstrate new business opportunities by business analysts •Find and locate expertise and content by employees, business partners, and customers •Improve informal business processes by collaborative teams Many of the business scenarios in which mashups are utilized to address business needs can be adopted across multiple industries. Two common scenarios are resource management and personal dashboards [5]. Resource management can be used to...
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