(Parallel evolution of code: I wrote a less-well-specified one at last gig.)
At risk of stating the obvious: this is a relatively novel development.
* a single, common encoding for almost all human languages
* a single, parseable, human-readable data interchange format
* a default protocol for information transport
This is very good for learners.
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On a serious note, it's interesting to observe that you can build a decent business charging $20 - $50 per month for something that any good developer can set up. This is one of those micro-saas sweet spots between "easy for me to build" and "tedious for others to build"— Jon Yongfook (@yongfook) September 5, 2019
Every year at MicroConf I get surprised-not-surprised by the number of people I meet who are running "Does one thing reasonably well, ranks well for it, pulls down a full-time dev salary" out of a fun side project which obviates a frequent 1~5 engineer-day sprint horizontally.
"Who is the prototypical client here?"
A consulting shop delivering a $X00k engagement for an internal system, a SaaS company doing something custom for a large client or internally facing or deeply non-core to their business, etc.
(I feel like many of these businesses are good answers to the "how would you monetize OSS to make it sustainable?" fashion, since they often wrap a core OSS offering in the assorted infrastructure which makes it easily consumable.)
"But don't the customers get subscription fatigue?"
I think subscription fatigue is far more reported by people who are embarrassed to charge money for software than it is experienced by for-profit businesses, who don't seem to have gotten pay-biweekly-for-services fatigue.
For technical founders it is irrationally, obscenely hard to reverse years of programming (ba dum bum) that sales is a value-destroying activity. Sales is CLEARLY a value-creating activity, contingent on you have a value-creating product.
The world will not drop what they are doing to adopt your work. This is particularly true in B2B, where simply building a better mousetrap won't overcome the activation energy required to get people with additional non-mice problems to prioritize changing mousetraps today.
This is very non-obvious for founders because founders are not often people who *want* to be sold to. We often come from a background where trying out tools is a bit of a fun hobby. We like looking at all the options, making charts, and ripping out partially complete tests.
"This week I unsuccessfully trialed four software options for automating that thing that has been killing us. Our actual production process remains the same as last week. Don't worry; this was a great use of time." is not a thing you want to write in a progress report to manager.
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Thanks to @chamath for laying this out in Social Capital's 2018 annual letter.
I've always appreciated his outspokenness.
2/ The hardest thing for most startups today is the path to market: first finding product-market fit & a way to reach customers, then building a ruthless machine to acquire, monetize & retain them.
3/ Because of this, when the VC industry invests capital into fast growing startups today, the plurality (if not majority) of invested capital will go into user acquisition and ad spending, for better or worse— usually worse.
4/ Todays massive venture-backed advertising, sales, and user acquisition playbook has morphed into one that champions growth at any cost.
This is creating a big bill that will soon come due...
5/ Ad impressions and click-throughs are bid up to outrageous prices by startups flush with venture money, and prospective users demand more and more subsidized products to gain their initial attention.
I was in the process of booking a flight via @OneTravel. Trying to make me book ASAP, they claimed: "38 people are looking at this flight".
Whoa, 38 is a lot, I have to hurry up. But first I have to check how they came up with 38 >>
[2/4] Right click and a quick "inspect" on the number, I found out the element's class name is "view_notification_random".
Awesome variable naming guys.
So you're _randomly_ trying to freak me out. Alright >>
[3/4] So what's your sophisticated pseudo-random algorithm?
Apparently, OneTravel are choosing a number between 28 and 45.
Because as you all know, based on serious psychological research, these numbers tend to make people book their flights fast #sarcasm #not42 >>
[4/4] Here's a bonus graph.
Thanks @IddoYadlin and #WolframAlpha.
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In that spirit, here's some quick Things Many People Find Too Obvious To Have Told You Already.
Your idea is not valuable, at all. All value is in the execution. You think you are an exception; you are not. You should not insist on an NDA to talk about it; nobody serious will engage in contract review over an idea, and this will mark you as clueless.
Technologists tend to severely underestimate the difficulty and expense of creating software, especially at companies which do not have fully staffed industry leading engineering teams ("because software is so easy there, amirite guys?")
Charge more. Charge more still. Go on.
The press is a lossy and biased compression of events in the actual world, and is singularly consumed with its own rituals, status games, and incentives. The news necessarily fails to capture almost everything which happened yesterday. What it says is important usually isn't.
Companies find it incredibly hard to reliably staff positions with hard-working generalists who operate autonomously and have high risk tolerances. This is not the modal employee, including at places which are justifiably proud of the skill/diligence/etc of their employees.
Yahoo, who bought Tumblr years ago, used to have a huge adult presence on the early net. They allowed adult groups and what not.
However, people and bots (just like now) misused the service, and Yahoo were forced to make a choice. They made private the groups (and later closed them down and sold some of it to other companies) and then ended their chatrooms on yahoo messenger...
after a incident with one of the chatrooms vid cams. The damage was done, Yahoo Messenger lost a lot of people - and with the closing of the groups - backpage and Craigslist came more important.
Now backpage is no more and Craigslist is slowly passing away. Tumblr had a semi strong community, but once 2014 came around and both porn, and political bots exploded the quality started to go down,
I really, *really* like SoJ's "would not use again" question, which lets people who've abandoned a tech self-identify. This is noticeable in the graph above with Flow users -- 41% of people who've used Flow say they wouldn't use it again.
React 65% (vs. 60%)
Vue 29% (vs. 24%)
Ember 5% (vs 4%, I was expecting a bigger rise)
But there's a shocker in here: Angular.
npm's survey had Angular at 40% last year and SoJ has it at either:
- 58% (if you include those who don't want to use it again)
- 24% (if you count only those who like it)
Since npm's question didn't ask if they intend to *continue* using it I think that might explain this.