Increasing clouds

“We have incentivized instability,” says Tam:

Nowadays, half the software you interact with doesn’t even reside on your PC. Further, there are whole departments at, say, Facebook or Blizzard or Google whose entire job is to “enhance the user experience”. If they’re not constantly dicking around, adding and removing features, changing what buttons do, moving things around … then they’re not doing their jobs.

There’s one sort-of-amusing upside to all this: it’s tricky to pirate software when that software calls home every time you use it. Guys who’ve gotten used to reinstalling the trial version every 29 days are despondent; why, they don’t even beg for serial numbers anymore.


  1. fillyjonk »

    11 January 2018 · 2:48 pm

    “dicking around” really is a good description for what happens with about 95% of the updates.

    (I now have to do an Adobe login – with a password I always forget – any time I want to read a farging .pdf at work, because of the version of the software they’ve thrown their lot in with. So I have the password written down, on the grounds that if someone broke into my office to do harm to whatever, clandestinely reading stuff off JSTOR would be the LAST thing they’d be doing)

  2. McGehee »

    11 January 2018 · 4:17 pm

    What would your company do if you installed Foxit or Sumatra?

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