The current workflow for social media and content sharing sucks from my point of view. I’ve been messing around with my blog again and trying to add, Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, and all the little bells and whistles for an independent online content creator. As an IT professional who has built private web applications and helped design or architect some websites. My first thought is “this is so fucking horrible!”. I feel bad for the people that do this type of work everyday although I’m sure once you get the hang of all the weird workflows you get into the rhythm of things and forget how horrible it truly is. I’m sure the steady paycheck helps to soothe the pain away as well from what I’ve been told but the content creation interface and workflow could use a major update.
Those are my initial thoughts. It’s been about a year since I started messing around with Twitter again. I made my first account in 2010 and have deleted a few dormant accounts along the way. I’m not a fan of WordPress which is the industry standard but I don’t think Drupal or Joomla are much better from a progress point of view. Drupal and Joomla do help intermediate web developers to get a web application built really fast if they can’t code from scratch yet but they are not great platforms for content creators unless they have a developer nearby. I did make a YouTube account back in June and it took me until now, in December, to figure out how to organize the content. Apparently, YouTube has an “Old Experience” and “New Experience” running simultaneously and since I use multiple devices they didn’t all update to the “New Experience” so I couldn’t find the damn links for what I wanted to do. This is not an ideal interface.
All of this content creation technology is marketed as “State of the Art” which basically means this is the best we can do for now because “state” refers to a particular condition at a specific time and in this case “art” is the content creation tools although “art” can refer to almost any type of technology or business process. That is the way the sentence is used and does not necessarily mean “top notch” or “of the highest quality”. Given this definition, it is understandable that these tools are the industry standard for content creation. With all of that negativity out of the way, I’m going to continue updating the blog and it looks like I have the workflow figured out for YouTube and WordPress as well as a decent content structure for WordPress. Twitter also, isn’t turning to be so bad. Once everything is in place, I should be able to make regular updates and write some software programs to fill in the gaps. I suddenly feel pretty lucky that I know how to code properly although it can be a pain in the ass when someone steals your code before you’re even halfway done with it and sells it as silicone valley crap ware. Thank goodness for Berne and coding signatures.
On a similar note, this experience had me reminiscing about AOL, Prodigy Online, CompuServe, Angel Fire, and Geo Cities profiles. All of which were denied funding for lack of a useful purpose. Those were the Facebook, Twitter, and Instagrams of the 90s which are pretty much identical from a software architecture point of view. That is important when examining copyrights, patents and trademarks because a specific graphic art layout can be considered as the service mark for a company. #NoProgress. We didn’t have YouTube back then because images took about 1 minute to load on dial up, usually 28.8 Kbps or 56.6 Kbps. On the other hand we had T.V. and cinema and probably spent most of our “YouTube time” watching a t.v. show or combining it with out outside time to go to the movies.
On a different note, The Library of Congress just reported they will no longer archive the World’s tweets because it’s too much data and unmanageable. Thank goodness for the Office of the CIO of the United States, seems to have been a good use of our tax dollars. I do not envy Google after reading that statement and thinking about all the server storage they have to pay for on all their free products that they can never charge for because it is considered similar to a public utility like a freeway or interstate highway. A good example about why thinking twice and considering all the terms and implications is a good idea before agreeing to fulfill a public contract.
This experience with exploring modern content creation tools also made me think about technology in general and how I personally think technology, especially for executives, was more advanced in the late 90’s (pre 9/11 and pre iPhone). Nobody would put up with such horrible interfaces. All terms including UI were layed out in the contract and if you couldn’t fulfill your obligations, you didn’t get paid or you had to refund money for the portion of the software you couldn’t fulfill and then provide free consulting to the UI developer so they can finish your job for you. Today, web and smartphone apps feel so “jumpy”, and you practically have to click 75 different links just to post a webpage or adjust the layout on one of your personal (or corporate) web pages.
Most people have an iPhone or Samsung Galaxy and use apps to get things done. For many people their first “smart” phone was one of the two so they have no frame of reference for the other platform or anything from the 90s. In my opinion, things have gotten worse since the late 90s. There is a growing minority of people who choose to use a personal assistant and people like Bill Gates or Warren Buffet don’t even own a cell phone by their own admission. I’ve now been smartphone free since mid October and just carry keys to the house and cash or a credit card. Life is so much better and I’m not on call so really don’t need a cell phone or people bothering me when I’m out and about enjoying my time off. The phone stays stays at home where it belongs. Now that I’m not carrying a cell phone, I don’t have to deal with random vibrations in my leg throughout the day and jumpy little apps to see what’s going on somewhere in the internet. I can enjoy whats around me although I do miss some of my friends on the internet. I can visit their websites though, when I get home.
The reasoning that led up to my smartphone free life was that I was always way more efficient at my IT work on a computer. I was also only using my phone to check emails and make phone calls. I thought if I could schedule a time to for those I can get rid of my phone. Dropping a month old smartphone in Paris and having to get around by pointing, writing notes and public transport maps convinced me life without a Smartphone isn’t so bad. I made it from the airport to my hotel, to an ATM, ordered drinks at a bar, ordered dinner, breakfast, went to the Louvre Museum the Eiffel Tower, back to the airport and hung out at the Aeroville mall for a bit before catching my plane all without a smartphone. Now if I could just figure out how to make a living off the Internet, life would be perfect.