Generational shifts

One interesting thing about SiCamp was getting to legitimately hang out with people who are about ten or fifteen years younger than me. Interesting differences were in views on Facebook Apps and SMS integration. Apparently there is no business proposal or application that cannot be improved by the addition of these two things. Both of which I really hate. I enjoy basic Facebook but I’ve never found an application that I really trusted to share my data with or that even had a compelling reason for existing.

I also hate the idea of web apps SMS’ing me or me, them. I can barely understand why you might want to SMS microblogging sites (after all SMS wasn’t designed for group messaging) but seriously why do you want to encourage a stream of textspeek to your website? Are we really such whores for user content? Isn’t there something really sinister about being tracked through time and space by websites? Didn’t people die to try and stop that happening?

It was also clear that the appeal of Google Maps has passed me by but I am prepared to accept that you ain’t got an app until you’ve geotagged stuff and asked Google for a map with pins and icons on it. It makes your site look the same as everyone else’s and they aren’t a coherent part of the your design but what the hell. The api doesn’t seem that complex and user’s critical faculties seem to be completely disabled by the magic of maps with lines showing how you get from one place to another.