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Fredric Paul: The Big Picture Fredric Paul: The Big Picture
 
   The Scariest Web Building Trends
(10/21/99)

The waning days of the millennium have been very good to Web builders. The Web continues to grow at an unbelievable pace, new and improved tools help smooth the rough edges, and Web standards creep ever closer to becoming meaningful guides instead of hopeful signposts. Best of all, the e-commerce explosion has forced everyone from media moguls to captains of industry into recognizing the importance of building top-notch Web sites. That's meant more job opportunities and healthy salaries for just about anyone who can build a professional-looking site.

But as comedian George Carlin once pointed out, inside every silver lining, there's a dark cloud. And what better time to peer into the storm than the last Halloween before we all find out just how big a deal Y2K will be? In my 1998 Halloween column, the trends that scared me were pretty much technical. I was worried about site traffic, browser wars, bandwidth battles, and even thieves and hackers.

This year, though, I have different nightmares scaring me at night. What frightens me now is how the very success of Web content and commerce threatens to make life more than a little unpleasant for Web builders:

Too Many Witches in the Brew
You can cope, but you can't hide.

CEO Black Magic
Your boss is the scariest person in the office these days.

Stressful Sorcery and Strategy
If the Web is mission critical, the stakes are high.

Amateur Vampires Work Day and Night
Competition is frighteningly fierce.

The Curse of the Technology
The Internet can be vexing.

After seeing what scares me this year, take a look and see if my fears from last year were justified.

Mother knows best?

Fredric Paul is a contributing editor to CNET Builder.com and VP / Editorial Director for AllBusiness.com, which offers solutions, savings, and strategies to start-ups and small businesses.

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