Despite the fact that it has not been that long ago, I still think it is hard for a lot of people to remember that there was a time before Twitter, Facebook, Google+, or any other social network. In fact, there was a time before email, the answering machine and the telephone. The world worked just fine then. To some, it may have worked better. It still can without these tools.

Patrick Rhone. “Enough.”

Twitter still has its place. It’s a place for celebrities to promote their fame. It’s a place for normal people to pretend they are celebrities. And it’s a place for Twitter to sell you to advertisers.

I try to keep myself using as few apps as I can and as few web services as I can. I don’t experiment with them. I don’t try out new things nearly as much as I used to. As I’ve gotten older, I’m less inclined to want to change the way I’m doing things. I’m also less inclined to start up on something that’s new because I have a sense that things that are new are not going to get old. Very few new things end up getting old. They just don’t last long enough. If I’d gotten myself in the habit of using Product A and Product A goes away, then I’m screwed. And I’m tired of that. That’s happened plenty of times over the years.

Dr. Drang dropping wisdom on The Prompt

The thing is though that I fear for Path’s health and future. Today, they had to lay off 20% of the staff. And though they recently rolled out a premium subscription model, I still am not sure if there are enough people using it and willing to pay for that to sustain them. I hope it sticks around.

patrickrhone / journal » Blog Archive » The Middle Path

I’ve used Path off and on, and when the latest version was released, I became very pro-Path because of their new for-pay business model. I showed it to my friends. I encouraged people to sign up. I told them how great it is to not have your private info sold to advertisers. But not a single person signed up. They all have Twitter and Facebook, and they don’t want another network.

“All of my friends are on [insert social network]. None of them are on Path.”

None of my friends want to use Path because none of their friends are using Path. And it’s a damned shame. Path is really well executed. As David Chartier put it, “it’s the Facebook I always wanted. An ad-free, non-intrusive, beautifully designed service for people to talk about and between themselves instead of posting links and memes.” Yes, their CEO is a dick, but let’s be clear: Dick Costolo, Jack Dorsey, and Mark Zuckerberg aren’t cuddly teddy bears, either.

I’m sad that the service appears to be dying. It doesn’t bode well for other for-pay services, and I shudder to think that ad-driven software is the only way to be successful in the realm of social web applications. I’m hoping that this–much like Microsoft’s entry into the smartphone and tablet space–is just a case of being too late to compete and not a rebuke of for-pay software.

A writer who waits for ideal conditions under which to work will die without putting a word to paper.

E.B. White

My wife pointed out this quote to me. I thought it was a dig at my constant fiddling with my writing workflow, but she actually meant it as a compliment on my ability to write despite not having “ideal conditions.”

Really starting to feel like I’m onto something here.

This isn’t the end of making money in the App Store — it’s just the end of selling mass-market apps for a few dollars up front from five screenshots alone.

Yep, paid apps are dead –

Steve Streza expounded on this on Informal Protocol, too, saying that the idea of cash-up-front for software is an outmoded idea.

For what it’s worth, my next app will be free with support for in-app purchase of pro features.