One of technology’s most persistently prescient crystal ball gazers is Betaworks CEO John Borthwick, a guy who – from Summize to Tweetdeck to bitly to Digg to his latest baby tapestry – always thinks ahead of the crowd. So, as a follow-up to Borthwick’s review of 2012, I sat down with the Betaworks CEO in his New York City office to get his take on what will happen in 2013. As always with Borthwick, the conversation was free-ranging and bold – particularly his prediction of how bad ideas will die sooner in 2013 and why that will be a good thing for startup entrepreneurs. And I was particularly struck by Borthwick’s vision of the “persistence of old platforms” in 2013 – a theme that TechCrunch’s Keith Teare also touched upon this weekend in his provocative Unnatural Acts piece.
So rather than a “web of things,” perhaps 2013 will really be a year in which we all go back to the future – back to a “re-portalization” craze and platform wars in which reinvented giants like Yahoo! and Microsoft realize new relevance. Plus ça change, plus c’est la même chose, as the French – a nation that knows a thing or two about persisting with old platforms – might say.