As long as we’re doubling up, Marco Ament is chiming in at the comment thread of yesterday’s “shoot themselves in the foot” post with some more great thoughts.
Success, as measured by installed base or revenue, doesn’t strongly corrolate to quality. A lot of mediocre products are extremely successful, and a lot of extremely successful products are mediocre.
I can’t argue that Microsoft Word or Firefox haven’t been successful, and I won’t argue that they don’t deserve their success. They both try to be everything to everyone, and they’ve largely achieved that, hence their success.
But, like most independent or small developers, I have neither the resources nor the desire to be everything to everyone, and I don’t like the experience of using most products that were designed in that way. Being everything to everyone incurs huge costs in complexity, reliability, and efficiency that I can’t afford, that I can’t tolerate in products I use, and that can’t result in a product I can be proud of.
Later on he explains why he feels comments are a net loss for the vast majority of comment-enabled blogs.