The Web pendulum

I think over the years, we’ve been noticing Web trends swinging back and forth in really broad strokes. Back in the 2000s, the rise and fall of skeuomorphism was really apparent. We ended up landing in the land of flat design by the 2010s and dare I say things are beginning to look a little less flat nowadays. Server-rendered applications became overshadowed by single page applications and back-of-the-front-end technologies. Now, we’re starting to see an influx of love for the server again (but on the edge).

At the moment, I’m particularly interested in two seemingly happening trends: privacy and decentralization. Twitter got bought out by Elon Musk and millions of people are signing up for Mastodon accounts across the fediverse. There are no sponsored ads or tracking in sight. They also are publishing more content on their RSS feeds again. 💛

There’s a renaissance happening on the Web right now as some are saying, and I’m loving it. It’s the 2020s version of phpBB forums and decentralized protocols.

I’ve been categorizing these sorts of things as part of the Web pendulum in my head. I know the Web is still relatively young and it’s hard to say if these sorts of polarizing trends will continue to happen, but I hope they do. I think through the messiness of it all, we get to learn a lot. This leads to growth for this insane piece of technology called the Internet and it also lets us get a little better at being kind to each other.

Just a little.