Alex Barnett of Bungee Labs took a look at 8 Trends in Software as a Service Platform which highlights some of the movement toward web services moving forward. This ties in nicely with what I was saying last week and what Paul Bissett also hit on.
The ProgrammableWeb blog also looked at all the mashups in their directory and came up with a pie chart listing their API of choice. Mapping APIs are quite popular (which I think must of us would have expected)
Now the ProgrammableWeb directory is by no means complete, but the sheer number of mapping APIs really shows that there is demand for geo web services.
Let me take a step back here and say this. I still don’t see desktop GIS being replaced by web services anytime soon. There is just too much lifting that needs to be done to even think about doing that and even many web mapping sites would be better served by rolling your own ArcGIS Server, MapServer, MapDotNet Server, GeoServer, etc than subscribing to ArcWeb, deCarta or GYM. But even those who go the whole 9 yards and throw up ArcGIS Server Advanced Enterprise are looking at using a web service to augment their own datasets. Heck even ESRI ArcGIS Desktop users are gearing up to integrate web services into their work flows.