Found in 1 comment on Hacker News
wpietri · 2020-03-15 · Original thread
This is not how you should think about making something new.

What you're optimizing for here is your experience. Your desire for tidiness.

To make a real change in the world, you need to optimize for the experience of the people who will adopt the new thing. For example, how would people using the the web benefit right now from replacing 802.11, IP, TCP, and HTTP with one monster protocol that just did the same stuff? They wouldn't. And neither would most protocol implementers, because a) they have to throw out everything they know and learn it all again, and b) they'd have to rebuild everything that currently exists.

And even if we push past that, it still won't work, because it's based on what I think of as the Architect's Illusion, the notion that a sufficiently smart person can just look at things and think real hard and have a perfect solution appear. The truth is that real products evolve over time as part of a dialog between and among users and makers. Even the simple paperclip, for example, evolved heavily. [1] If smart people can't get the paperclip right on a first try, there is no way they'll get a massive protocol stack right. And even if they did, next week somebody would come up with something new that doesn't fit, and we'd be right back where we were.


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