spacing hack


solo piano 20101220

TIL the term "abandonware".

Specifically, two of my (formerly) favorite pieces of Mac software are abandonware:

  • The Hit List - a beautifully designed todo app that was abandoned before the iphone app ever saw the light of day.
  • TextMate - granted, TextMate has seen an update fairly recently, so I guess that means it's technically not abandonware. However, I have seen mentions of show-stopping bugs that I'm not personally familiar with that (assuming they have been fixed) existed for at least a few years. And then there's TextMate 2.0, which is definitely vaporware.

I found this mention of TextMate 2.0 dating back to November of 2006. 4 years later and still nothing.

I think the problem here is this, from the developer's own words:

To realize this I felt it was necessary to start from scratch, and it has involved a lot of experimentation, rewriting, and it is why I didn’t feel like discussing progress in the open because I had no idea about how many of my ambitions would pan out. The program itself has been in a constant state of flux with essential stuff missing because my focus has initially been on all the stuff I didn’t know how to do, as I could always do the “easy” stuff later (and doing the easy stuff first just leads to rewriting it when new insights are gained).

I know the feeling.

I waited to do laundry weather until I had more Ruby experience (it was originally supposed to be my first major Rails project). I recently rewrote the weather at because of my "new insights" (which basically boils down to Rails being overkill for most of the things I work on, so I redid it in Sinatra).

And then there's I've got all sort of exciting new features in mind, but I'm specifically planning on holding back by starting out with the "boring" re-implement-all-functionality stuff instead.

From-scratch is a trap that's easy to fall into. Sometimes rebuilding from scratch is a necessity; sometimes it's really just another way to procrastinate.

At some point, you just have to jump in and get to work.

And if you've already nailed that part of it, then remember this:

At some point, you just have to ship it.

Until then, it remains just-another-could-be-brilliant-idea with no execution behind it.

And according to Derek Sivers, that makes it worth, at most, 20 USD.