DHH quotes on technology

Creator of Ruby on Rails, Founder & CTO at Basecamp & HEY, NYT best-selling author, and Le Mans 24h class-winning racing driver.

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The web isn’t just another software platform. It’s the greatest software platform the world has ever seen. No permissions, no masters, readable source code. Let’s protect the heritage, work in its service, and remind ourselves just what a marvel it all really is.


When every chat app in the world has died off, email will still be here.


As people wake up to the damage wrought by having an addictive, needy computer in your pocket all the time, I predict the desktop computer will see a renaissance. A computer fixed to the desk in a separate room sounds like just the healthy separation we need.


It's the worst of times and the best of times in tech right now. Big tech and a horde of zombie unicorns, backed by vulture capital, are spoiling our internet, stealing our data, and robbing their workers. But there's finally a seed of hope in the awareness that's growing.


The Safari team doesn't get quite enough credit for how much nicer Reader View makes browsing the modern ad-infested web. SHIFT+CMD+R and all the visual pain goes away ❤️.


Gift cards are the worst. The. Worst. You exchange money that can be used for anything, anywhere for the same amount of money that can be used in one place within a certain time.


You don't have to be a luddite to think that maybe, just maybe, having these vast centralized platforms built on user-generated content and optimized for engagement was the internet taking a dark turn for the worse.


Treating the web as a “compile target” washes away much of what‘s so special about it. Reducing the web to just another closed platform, like Windows or iOS, is to be blind to its truly unique shape and promise. Let’s cherish what made the web special, not pave it over.


When civilization rebuilds after the nuclear winter, let's hope "ad tech" is one of those things it just doesn't bother to rediscover.


Here's two truths that are possible to hold in your head at the same time: Musk did the world good by creating Tesla / Musk is a sleep-deprived, exhausted mess of a human that desperately needs to justify his personal sacrifices with a narrative of necessity.


Basic ethics reform for mailing list software: 1) Don't enable tracking pixels by default. 2) If sender turns them on, force a disclaimer at the bottom of the list: "[The sender] tracks when you open emails from them. Here's what that means. Want to opt out?". 3) Respect opt-out.


The disdain Lenovo must have for their own customers to install a SSL interceptor for ad-injection is reaching Sony rootkit levels of epic.


Electron should send an brand-impairment invoice to all the memory-hogging, fan-spinning monstrosities that have been shipped under its brand. It’s amazing that so many apps have gotten away with bloat murder because Electron absorbed all the blame.


The hardest part of working with the web is to realize just how much the original premise was right. From decentralization to View Source to URLs. Still unpacking the beauty of these foundational ideas. (Same holds true for email.)


Here's something smart: I don't want my TV to be smart!! Dumb as a rectangle, please. As little software as possible.


Micro services as the defining architecture is a great example of what might work for massive teams can be death for smaller ones.


If you can only see a choice between "10MB, slow-ass, overly tracked, invasively ad-filled" and "death", you're not looking hard enough.


The real threat of AI is that THE ALGORITHM correctly concludes that the most destructive political leadership is the global maxima for engagement.


Software defaults reveal the soul.


4-tier / micro-service architectures are organizational scaling patterns far more than they're tech. 1st rule of distributed systems: Don't.


Strong encryption is our best defense against a surveillance state bent on Collect It All. Must be protected at all cost.


Encrypt It All: Make it so cumbersome, so expensive, and so time-consuming to do mass surveillance that it simply isn't worth it. Fight back


The jump from tracking every call/email/web visit/purchase to “we must record from your camera/microphone 24/7” seems smaller than ever.


End-to-end encryption protects us from all snooping eyes. Protection from the government is not a mistake, but prime objective.


iOS software works best as the appetizer for another service where all the real money is made. That's a damn shame.


I really don’t understand the purpose of Android’s hyper-speed scroll acceleration. It’s like they optimized for scrolling 10 pages with the smallest flick of a finger, but it’s basically impossible just to scroll a little.


For all its trouble, iOS nails the basics better than any other computing platform I've ever used in my 30 years of computing.

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