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Tech Slump Considered Beneficial

By rusty in MLP
Thu Jan 18, 2001 at 07:08:44 PM EST
Tags: Internet (all tags)

Jon Katz gets it! I've been saying for a while now what Katz writes in his latest Slashdot column, The Myth Of The Tech Slump: that the crash-and-burn of dumbass dotcoms and inflated stock prices is, on the whole, a good thing for the net. "If ever there were an unholy marriage, it was the frenzied coupling of venture capitalists and dotcom entrepeneurs. It had to end sometime, and now is a good a time as any," he writes. It isn't often that I agree with "the gasbag", but this one is definitely worth a read.


Voxel dot net
o Managed Hosting
o VoxCAST Content Delivery
o Raw Infrastructure


The dotcom implosion:
o Burn, baby, burn! 26%
o I spent my life savings buying eToys stock 1%
o Irrelevant, I have a real job 10%
o Who cares, as long as there's still plenty of porn 22%
o They should have monetized more strategic initiatives 2%
o Rusty linking to Katz? Surely the Four Horsemen cannot be far behind! 26%
o Communista 9%

Votes: 106
Results | Other Polls

Related Links
o Slashdot
o The Myth Of The Tech Slump
o Also by rusty

Display: Sort:
Tech Slump Considered Beneficial | 14 comments (13 topical, 1 editorial, 0 hidden)
Already saw it on /. ;) (2.80 / 15) (#1)
by retinaburn on Thu Jan 18, 2001 at 03:44:15 PM EST

Just kidding...someone had to say it...or more accuratly be the first to say it.

I think that we are a young species that often fucks with things we don't know how to unfuck. -- Tycho

AAAARGH! (4.50 / 10) (#5)
by error 404 on Thu Jan 18, 2001 at 04:17:21 PM EST

Rusty links to JK, and the result is a First Post!
Electrical banana is bound to be the very next phase
- Donovan

[ Parent ]
Katz is losing his edge... (3.00 / 5) (#3)
by lucas on Thu Jan 18, 2001 at 03:57:55 PM EST

...and here I am agreeing with a Katz article.

I loathe to read Katz because he writes stuff just to be inflammatory; I'm not offended by it or anything, but it is obnoxious when you're trying to filter thru to the real news. The titles of his articles got to be so annoying that I turned Katz articles off on my Slashdot account.

The guy could have been a leading tech journalist, but he's known for his ill-informed rants more than his moderate articles.

I always think of Bowie Poag of Propaganda - extremely talented and versatile guy who tries to get the wrong type of attention through his writings. Having spoken with Bowie way back when, I can vouch for him as a fairly nice guy and not a loon. I think I was crazier than he was at the time.

Maybe Katz is similar. I've not read his book, though I have heard it's actually not that bad.

Yeah, to a degree (3.00 / 2) (#4)
by rusty on Thu Jan 18, 2001 at 04:11:23 PM EST

I think Katz tries to take a strong position to rile people up. This isn't always a bad thing, but usually it is. The world is just a lot more complicated than he wants it to be, and he tends to gloss over or ignore the parts of reality that disagree with his chosen stance.

The other big problem is that he's a non-technical person writing about tech issues. Sometimes that's a good thing-- it's good to get another perspective. But more often, the fact that he doesn't understand the technology that is the underpinning of his thesis makes him come up with analyses that are just plain wrong.

Other than the standard "the net wants to be free" bit at the end, though, this one was based on pretty solid foundations, I thought.

And about BJP: if he's not a frothing lunatic, why does he choose to play one on the 'net?

Not the real rusty
[ Parent ]

Formulaic perhaps? (3.00 / 1) (#7)
by yankeehack on Thu Jan 18, 2001 at 04:44:44 PM EST

I don't know if I can call JK inflammatory, I tend to think of him as a bit formulaic though.

He just seems to write about what he thinks the audience will like, rather than (gasp!) an original thought. It is embarrasing to think that the /. editors tolerate, even seem to support him. ugh! To get a good laugh (and if you are bored), I suggest doing a google search on Jon Katz, it was educational for me.

And, I have to admit, probably one of my proudest postings on /. was when JK accused me of being a troll. :-P He wrote an article about the "big bad corporations"---the usual claptrap--- and said something about Time Warner and their lawyers oppressing someone. So of course I titled my posting "hypocrite" because if Time Warner was such a horrific corporation, how come he wrote an article for Time Magazine the week before? I don't think he expected any /.er to read Time Magazine.

No one who was bad in bed has ever been good in life (i.e. liberals, I've never had sex with a liberal woman who knew how to use her body.) Keeteel :-P I'm *right*!
[ Parent ]

Closet Kat Lover (3.50 / 2) (#8)
by Seumas on Thu Jan 18, 2001 at 04:46:09 PM EST

Okay, I'll admit it...

I enjoy reading Katz. I always have. I don't know if he goes over the top to generate conversation or if he really honestly thinks everything he writes about is as urgent and horrible as he presents them to be. I really don't care. I don't read his articles because I want Woodward and Bernstein -- I read him because I want to read some interesting editorializing.

A lot of people very clearly badmouth Katz because it's trendy. A lot of people have legitimate points to make against his articles -- and they do. After all, isn't that the whole point? You aren't required to agree with what he writes. You're not even required to read it.

For those who just "don't get it", try coming to a Katz article with the expectation of reading NewsWeek opinion piece and not a Harvard Journal of Law piece. It might improve your enjoyment of it.

Right, wrong or over-hyped, I enjoy an occasional Katz article and I'm not ashamed to admit it.
I just read K5 for the articles.
[ Parent ]

While I Agree, I am Jealous (3.66 / 9) (#6)
by Seumas on Thu Jan 18, 2001 at 04:27:34 PM EST

I agree that the 'slump' is an overall good thing. I'm just a little jealous..

Why? Well, because I'm just a few years too young and made it into the industry only as things were reaching their peak and my friends were retiring (after about four years with the company and most of them under the age of 25).

My options won't even fully vest for another four years and while (if I were already vested) I could have sold and made a profit of almost $300k just two or three months ago, I'd lose between $50k and $100k today.

I only hope that something will happen after I've fully vested. Otherwise one of the most attractive aspects of my contract will be completely worthless and I'll never have the chance to retire early like many in the company did a couple years ago.
I just read K5 for the articles.

I am worried (3.00 / 3) (#9)
by mystic on Thu Jan 18, 2001 at 06:27:15 PM EST

not, about what is said in the article. I am worried because :
What would have been the reaction of K5 crowd that this story been posted by someone other than rusty.

I guess the first of the posts in this story would have been the answer from everyone and the story by now would have met its end.

I am worried.

Oh.. what did I vote?? Check.. and think, no you did not get it.. think again.

You're probably right (3.00 / 2) (#11)
by rusty on Thu Jan 18, 2001 at 06:36:01 PM EST

Well, it's a good article, IMO. It would be a shame if folks here voted it down because of who posted it (here, and there). But I think you may well be right in speculating what would have happened. Hopefully people will consider that point in their future voting. :-)

Not the real rusty
[ Parent ]
Maybe we should (none / 0) (#12)
by mystic on Thu Jan 18, 2001 at 07:57:11 PM EST

take the suggestion that posters of the story should be kept secret a bit more seriously. I know there was a discussion on this here, but I think it was dismissed too fast.

[ Parent ]
same old Katz (4.00 / 3) (#10)
by cbatt on Thu Jan 18, 2001 at 06:35:27 PM EST

Good article overall, thanks for propagating it to k5.

But here's something I found... interesting:

The first generation Internet belonged to the engineers, dreamers and military researchers. The second belongs to the Geeks and the Dotcommers, who battled one another, sometimes directly, sometimes not, for attention and primacy. It was the Microsoft Era, and it's over.
A bizarre conclusion, imho.

Since when was the last era the Microsoft era? How does he get off telling us that the MS era, which I think began with the ascendancy of Win95, is over? An overly optimistic statement, I would guess.

If anything, this puts MS in an even stronger position. They've got their fingers in almost every conceivable technological pot. The hot-shot "boy wonder" competition from most fronts is drying up. The Linux, OpenSource, Freesoftware hype is no longer in the mainstream (no, it dosn't need the mainstream to survive, but if no one outside of it's current userbase knows about it, then the userbase dosn't grow and MS dosn't die).

Yes the current downswing will slow them, but I don't think it will hurt them at all. Same thing with the other giants like IBM and Intel (though Intel is being beatdown for stupid moves rather than poor market conditions so it might actually start sucking wind for a while).

Furthermore, the .NET initiative is far more than what the title implies. It's practically a re-invention of their platform and they seem to be downplaying that fact. No, I don't think their whole web-application based scheme will work, as market conditions for that sort of thing are soured, but it makes possible many other things besides that (it really makes development a breeze).

Whatever whatever... just some thoughts.

Before you can understand recursion
you must understand recursion.

please explain (3.00 / 6) (#13)
by enterfornone on Thu Jan 18, 2001 at 09:00:26 PM EST

I voted it down at first, but since lots of people were voting it up I figured I'd take a second look. But I still can't work out what it's about. He seems to take a lot of space and use a lot of clever words in order to explain something that is quite simple.

The reason dot.coms died is because people woke up to the fact that they were investing in vapour. Someone would set up a web site, hype it up, get an IPO and then not no where to go from there. That's why so many dot.coms failed, not because there is some flaw in e-business, but because all they were ever selling was marketing hype aimed at investors.

That's my opinion, I'm not sure what Jon's opinion is, perhaps someone who knows both English and Katz can translate.

efn 26/m/syd
Will sponsor new accounts for porn.
Good summary (4.00 / 2) (#14)
by rusty on Fri Jan 19, 2001 at 12:13:07 AM EST

That's why so many dot.coms failed, not because there is some flaw in e-business, but because all they were ever selling was marketing hype aimed at investors.

Yep, that's what he said alright.

Not the real rusty
[ Parent ]

Tech Slump Considered Beneficial | 14 comments (13 topical, 1 editorial, 0 hidden)
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