Last Friday, Mike and I were chatting about how no compelling applications came out of Ning.
We agreed that it was because of their silly committment to stealth
mode during their gestation. You don’t publicly reveal your early
development because it’s “so web 2.0″. You do so to
get an early reality check on whether or not your project sucks.
is good, but better than knowledge is a good epistemology that allows
the rapid and timely acquisition of knowledge! You can teach a man to
fish and he can feed his family, but if you teach him how to teach
himself to fish…
Anyway, TechCrunch mentioned Ning today, listing four problems why the service isn’t taking off.
But the reality of Ning is that it’s lost whatever coolness it
had, no one uses it and Ning is going to have a very hard time getting
people’s attention when they finally do roll out better
functionality. Here’s are the problems….
And in other Stealth Mode news, Ookles just closed its Angel round in Om Malik’s bathroom. Ookles?
That’s for them to know, and us to buzz, buzz, buzz, about!
Let’s get all excited and see what clues we can scrape up from
google searches and reverse DNS lookups! Or not.
So the other
problem with stealth mode, closely related to the first, is that
operations that grow organically are stronger than ones designed in one
afternoon around a table. This is the insight behind Agile software development,
and ultimately is the lesson of the Vietnam War as well. A few days ago
I noticed that blogger’s search stinks, and I’d like a tiny
tag cloud in the sidebar of my blog. I could write a scraper but where
would I host it? I realized there was a need for a new type of service,
where I could upload some little script somewhere, tell the service to
run it nightly, and point a sidebar of my blog to its output. I should
put up a J2EE app server somewhere, maybe at toys.pokkari.tv. I could
write a little administration app that allows uploading and deployment
of ear files. And then, to accomodate those who wanted to write in
other languages, I could drop in the Bean Scripting Framework
and many language libraries. And some other page parsing and
manipulation libraries to make work on web pages less like DOM and more
like Chickenfoot. Eventually it would grow into something very easy to use, under the guidance of real users and real usage.
now my personal linkfarm will be analysed in order to make money with
social network engineering. And I can’t even export my bookmarks
to avoid an
Yahoo! makes the Flickr signup page look more Yahoo!ish.
sure Yahoo told our Flickr buddies: “We love Flickr as it is and
promise not to change it … much.” The Flickr folk were
probably too busy counting the zeros on the check in front of them, and
missed that little disclaimer. Sellouts.
of scale. Is there any room in the future for small businesses in any
industry? Chain stores are clearly outcompeting other businesses, reformating Manhattan into a copy of everywhere else. It’s a more advanced ecosystem, crowding out and dooming the others to obsolescence.
Is the condition for this bloom (its eutrophication)
natural or artificial? In other words, is it a natural evolution of
advanced economies, or are the game rules being skewed by Big Business
to favor Big Business? Murray Rothbard observed
In short, the intervention by the federal government was designed, not
to curb big business monopoly for the sake of the public weal, but to
create monopolies that big business (as well as trade associations of
smaller business) had not been able to establish amidst the competitive
gales of the free market. Both left and right have been persistently
misled by the notion that intervention by the government is ipso facto
leftish and antibusiness. Hence the mythology of the New-Fair
Deal-as-Red that is endemic on the right. Both the big businessmen, led
by the Morgan interests, and Professor Kolko, almost uniquely in the
academic world, have realized that monopoly privilege can only be
created by the State and not as a result of free-market operations.
is the fewest number of entities the Earth can contain? If everyone
decided to throw all the planet’s capital into the pot of a
single corporation, would that be a stable state? I can hear the
argument now: democracies may or may not war against each other, but
corporations certainly don’t war against themselves.