Tuesday, April 17, 2007

It just works

I'm about to buy a new dryer. The ones that I consider have an astonishing amount of features and drying combinations. I'm pretty tech-savvy but I feel the electronics and appliances industry has started this features war, that makes me feel like my mom with her VCR flashing 12:00 for years to come.

Will this eventually stop? I hope so.
Most web sites are starting to understand that too many choices are too much for the consumer. Consumers say they want unlimited choices. What they're really saying is that they want enough choices they can control. 500+ TV stations don't put the consumer in control. They overwhelm the consumer. 250 washing combinations on my dishwasher don't improve my life. They just make me feel inadequate.

Sometimes 'good' is the best way to go. I have other things to worry about than the 3 million features on my cellphone, camera or audio system. I just want something to work, look good and be maintenance-free. I don't always need the best, most innovative and glamorous.

Don't get me wrong: I'm a big advocate of excellence. But excellence doesn't equal complicated. In our cluttered times, simplicity often equals excellence.

Clearly, Craigslist could could look better and have more features. But it just works.
And 'it just works' is sometimes all we need.

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