Falling for Hipster Tools
I like the new and shiny, I don’t deny it. Luckily I have learned to finish the chapters I start writing, so after some playing with a new tool/framework/library I ask myself:
can I build a whole thing with this?
And if the answer is yes
Would I ship a product (that I sell to people) based on this?
The new and shiny can get past the first but usually doesn’t pass the second test. When it comes to people opening their wallets to pay me for a product/service I have the religious attitude to build something solid, that lasts.
All this reflection was triggered by an great post on First Round about infrastructure vendor lock-in. There’s so many stories of companies severely impacted by choices that preferred new and shiny instead of old, boring (but solid) technologies.
When it comes to infrastructure the best deterrent for my attraction towards new and shiny is this post on Signal v. Noise. They can migrate the whole Basecamp to a new datacenter in 60 seconds.
I still can’t do it in 60 seconds, it’s not even my goal. But with some commands and around 20 minutes I can move my services to a new datacenter.
Being in control of these aspects is important for a small business. It’s also a good feeling.