January 15, 2010

Convenience is a Moving Target

20 years ago, convenience in record shopping meant being able to get an album at the local department store or mall rather than having to go an extra 20 minutes to a specialty record store.

10 years ago, convenience was being able to order a CD from SecondSpin.com or Amazon rather than driving to the local record store.

Today convenience is the difference between having to buy a song on the desktop and sync it to the music player, or just buying it in iTunes on my phone.

It's amazing what people consider an "effort" now compared to 5, 10, or 20 years ago. Something to keep in mind when thinking about how we do things with Free Software.

People have little to no tolerance for what they consider inconvenient. Even if that inconvenience is, realistically, very minimal. It can cost thousands or even millions of users for a platform if people perceive it as inconvenient.

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