Here's a fresh rant, inspired by recent conversations on Mastodon and the Phone app on my iPhone. Here is a short list of things I’m over. Done. Caput.
Software as a Service - SAAS has no end game. Subscriptions as a business model require a constant stream of development and delivery of new content, features, whatever. It doesn’t take long before SAAS becomes bloated and plump full of so many options, bells, and whistles that it becomes more difficult to use—enveloping the core features almost completely. Case in point: Slack after the most recent “upgrade.” It’s just gross. SaaS has become another form of Botox or Helvetica, best used on rare occasions but never on a daily basis. Yet most people forget to heed that instruction.
Clouds and integrations - A friend of mine recently tried to de-cloud his life. It took weeks to get all of their files (property) into a single, trusted source. And they still have a cloud or two hanging. Yesterday I tried to create a simple contact form with, you guessed it, a SaaS product that wouldn’t let me tie an existing HTML form to their service. No, I had to use their “form builder” and pay extra to remove their logo which made my site look like shit. Clouds have truly turned the Internet into a series of tubes. Integrations that only work from one cloud—one subscription—to the next. Cloud is a vail of simplicity, as a service.
Greek Beasts as a Title - I was heavily considering a leadership role at a tech company right up until the recruiter told me that the company was one of nine “centaurs” in existence today. I cringed immediately and detached my focus for the remainder of the call. It wasn’t enough that we have labeled companies and people as “unicorns” for the last ten years (so magic!). No, we needed something more and the name Unicorn+ wasn’t going to cut it. Enough is enough. You’re either unique or you’re not. More importantly, are you getting work done or just talking about it? We don’t need to drag the Greeks and their pets into this any longer.
A seat at the table - I have a few friends who got their preverbal seat at the table and they whined because it didn’t magically elevate their status or result in immediate respect and trust for their shiny new position. Physical proximity to a person does not equate to the level of influence. It’s just a chair at a table, and not the table, it's just a table. If you want to influence real change, you have to earn it through diplomacy, relationships, and doing work that needs to be done, even if it’s not associated with your job description. Real leadership, real influence, takes work, not a meeting.
Notifications - I don’t want another device buzzing me, taptic feed-backing me for attention. Incoming SMS messages...fine. Everything else can go to hell. I can’t stand that people won’t answer their phones, but they are willing to mainline their brains with constant notifications on multiple screens on their desks, in their hands, and on their wrists. Unfortunately, we’re all now living in an episode of Black Mirror.
Call of Duty cosmetics - I can’t believe I just wrote that but it’s true. In-game micro-purchases are great because they are optional and keep games as a single purchase, not a subscription. I do enjoy playing a military genre game and Call of Duty is one of the best, but it’s kinda hard to get into the story when another player attacking me looks like Nicki Minaj in a hot pink outfit. I expect that kind of shenanigans in Fortnite, but not Call of Duty. Ugh. I just need to remove this game and go back to the better title in the genre: Battlefield 2042.