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    Are you the kind of person who is so worn down by the numbing drudgery of late capitalism that you can’t summon the energy to drag a 2 ounce toothbrush across your gums for 90 seconds a day?

    it is rare that things tagged satire get an audible laugh out of me.

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      It resonates with me, however being in Germany I think I am partially shielded from this bullshit. Sadly it seems that almost every city now wants to be in center of the local Silicon Valley.

      But I find it kinda ironic that it is posted on Medium from all of things. I understand that that’s a way to get to the audience though.

      2012, Medium: At last, a way to post text on the internet!

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        A bit of background: the author is a fairly controversial writer (as is every anti-capitalist) and his blog got hacked. He put his stuff on Medium so he wouldn’t have to worry about that again. He isn’t in tech

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          Medium is actually a pretty great lightweight publishing platform. People who diss it tend to not appreciate good design.

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            Not sure what you mean by lightweight in this context. What would be an example of a heavyweight alternative?

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              Engraving your blog posts on stone tablets and carrying them on your back from the top of a mountain.

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                Something that requires setting up your own server.

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                I used to use HTML files I loaded into a directory of a free, web host. There were free and paid editors to automatically produce or load them. Local copies and standard tech meant I could switch vendors pretty easy. Funny how “lightweight” changes over time. ;)

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                  Perhaps you underestimate the hurdle of having to first learn HTML and how to upload files to a server.

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                    I did include “free and paid editors to automatically produce or load them.” All kinds of lay people used them. MySpace had kids everywhere doing HTML and filling in templates. A blog could basically just use templates. The local high schools also teach lay people HTML with end result they all make a web site at the end. It’s super-easy if you’re just using a subset of it. Even easier if it’s a WYSIWYG editor like all the site editors that hosts use.

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                    Are you suggesting there’s a human need for decentralized storage? I doubt most people care where their data is stored as long as they can easily access it as needed.

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                      as long as they can easily access it as needed

                      which is a major argument for decentralized storage

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                        Until your personal server’s hard disk fails. Yes, I know backups solve that but most people don’t bother making them.

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                          Dropbox as a solution for that?

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                I feel like if a company just stepped up and started selling well-built, non-tech driven products and super simple services with good build quality and low cruft and nailed their marketing they would make a killing right now on people who are just fed up with complicated… things.

                I had to buy a new dryer this last week and it was just overwhelming, I don’t want to drop £400+ on a new dryer, I don’t need 300 different settings and combinations of screens and tech to spin and blow air at my wet unmentionables. I actually found myself missing the dryer my parents had when we were kids, just a simple metal box with a door on the front and a plastic knob with minutes on it, it sounded like a harrier jet taking off when it was running… but it worked, and it lasted like 8 years with minor repairs.

                I keep seeing articles about framework fatigue, I think it’s pretty much everything fatigue. Even with development, picking libraries, hosting vendors, etc… I think I’ve got more of a “feature” fatigue, everything has just got way too many features, if I need a lib for something, and there are a bunch of services, frameworks, etc… out there that provide the “something” but with loads of other cruft, or they make me have to completely rethink my development and build workflows I will go out of my way to find a drop-in replacement that does only what I want or just write it myself… that’s how fed up I am…

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                  That sounds really hipster ;-)

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                    I was thinking it made me sound more like a grumpy 90 year old man. Get off my lawn! Damn kids with their rolly-boards…

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                    I feel like if a company just stepped up and started selling well-built, non-tech driven products and super simple services with good build quality and low cruft and nailed their marketing they would make a killing right now on people who are just fed up with complicated… things.

                    There’s a bunch of companies doing that right now. They’re either not succeeding (market rejection) or succeeding at a small scale. I’m guessing the latter aren’t nailing the marketing. I know many are more selective about customers to ensure they’ll be low trouble and others do word of mouth. No growth hacking. They also charge a little extra on average with some really greedy. Tons of customers spoiled by Amazon, app stores, etc will avoid a product even if it’s $2 more. So, there is that to consider, too. Gotta differentiate enough to justify the price with ideal example probably being Apple’s brand.

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                      I think one problem is that we’ve gotten so used to comparing specs when making a purchase that anything that can’t be placed in an easy to use faceted system (memory:16gb, capacity: 1tb, etc) basically has no mass market value.

                      There’s no checkbox for: Product a and product b have the same specs but product A will probably last over a decade whereas product B will probably shit itself about 1 month after the 1 year warranty expires.

                      This is one of the things that makes apple pretty smart, they’ve done a decent job of dividing laptops into 2 categories. Macbooks and other. I’m not claiming they deserve that distinction, but in the minds of customers they have it.

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                    and i’m not even sure if its satire.

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                      Silicon Valley has managed to blend progressive social ideology with extreme capitalism so seamlessly. You can type articles railing against worker abuse using the keyboard of a laptop that made some company hundreds in pure profit while feeling good about yourself. On the other end of the spectrum you can embrace Stallmanism and just be mad all the time and feel good about yourself. Or you can try to take a middle, responsible road and just feel guilty about all the compromises you make. It’s a great time to be alive.

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                        Silicon Valley has managed to blend progressive social ideology with extreme capitalism so seamlessly.

                        Sometimes called “the Californian ideology” after an influential 1995 essay of that name:

                        This new faith has emerged from a bizarre fusion of the cultural bohemianism of San Francisco with the hi-tech industries of Silicon Valley … the Californian Ideology promiscuously combines the free-wheeling spirit of the hippies and the entrepreneurial zeal of the yuppies.

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                          Or you can try to take a middle, responsible road and just feel guilty about all the compromises you make. It’s a great time to be alive.

                          That’s me if you add understanding the trends enough to correctly guess how much worse it will get on occasion.

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                          I’m starting my next gig in early summer, so I’ve had some time to work serious on writing (as well as learning about publishing). I just finished my third draft of Farisa’s Courage and will probably be querying agents soon. (If anyone can recommend an agent for a 124k steampunk fantasy novel with serious NYT potential, I’m coming on the market soon.) Anyway, being a user of technology and a person who wants something from it has given me a new perspective on the tech industry– how it looks from the client side.

                          Publishing, for example, is a hopelessly backward industry. If you self-publish, you’re fighting chaos and obscurity and trying to overcome the stigma of a book that can be offered more cheaply ($3.99). It costs thousands of dollars to do it right (cover art, professional editing) and there are no shortcuts, but there’s also no guaranteed payoff. (Well-edited self-pubs– which are the minority, because anyone can play– are as good as traditionally published novels, but how do you verify that yours is well-edited until someone buys it?) We’re 15 years from working out the kinks in self-publishing, especially around DRM. The superior prestige of a printed book comes in large part from its permanence. You can hand it down to your kids. You can’t hand a DRM-ridden e-book down to your kids. Self-pub may be the future… but it has a long way to go.

                          That said, traditional publishing is backward in a million other ways. As late as 2010, people sent 500-page paper manuscripts with SASE (self-addressed stamped envelope). It’s more competitive to get a $50k advance than $20M in venture capital. Literary agents used to support careers, and now they’re used as the gatekeepers– a job that authors despise, but also a job that agents themselves hate. Publishers used to know how to sell a good novel to its full potential. Now, they have no clue and defer to social media and pre-existing celebrity– they’re clearly in the dark, but it’s not obvious that anyone has better ideas, and it seems like no one (present company included) knows what they are doing. As a result, you have a lot of the pedigree-based relationship-driven social-proof nonsense that tech was supposed to nuke from low earth orbit.

                          By and large, we don’t need more cuteness. We don’t need to render ads more cleverly or shave milliseconds off of page loads. You do think about milliseconds as a writer (each word is 225msec, so “the fact that” -> “that” just saved 100,000 readers– your goal, even if few writers achieve it– half a day) but not in the masturbatory way that ad-tech website wizards do.

                          I used to be angry largely because the tech industry was underserving engineers and ignorant of their career interests and, for the top programmers, our full potential. That’s still true. However, it’s also interesting to take the client perspective (i.e. be someone who wants or needs something from tech) and see, however, how much it misses the boat on so many important problems, and how poorly it has done at making its capabilities available to the general public. How is it that, as recently as the early 2010s, people were still sending 500-page paper manuscripts to Ivy-educated New Yorkers to sit in slush piles for 9 months… when the Internet became widely available in 1993?