Thursday, April 19, 2012

Chimps, monsters and super heroes - the new world of software

Google proved you can hide ultra sophisticated technologies and mountains of big data under a page that has one text field and two buttons. Apple showed you can create a phone-to-die-for that does not even have a search feature. At some point, some software companies got it. Simplicity is the new black (white too, if you're Apple).

Alan Cooper, the father of Visual Basic, once said all users want is to "not feel stupid".

The old generation business and IT apps made all of us feel stupid. Real stupid. But the world of software is changing. Some examples:

Marketing automation can be fun!

MailChimp enables marketers to execute and manage email campaigns. It requires no training whatsoever. The interface is beautifully crafted, and the application "hand holds" you from the moment you sign up until you complete your first campaign. A few more features and I bet they will start winning accounts from the higher end, painfully more complicated Eloqua and Marketo.


Monitoring e-commerce sites can be fun!

Shoppimon helps Magento online store owners improve conversions by finding site problems, such as broken shopping carts or unusual slow responses. It is the first service that lets non-techies take matters into their own hands and see how their store performs. Sure, they'll need techies for fixing issues, but they will never leave their store unattended again, and the app is ridiculously easy to set up and use.

Shoppimon - Magento Monitoring

Server provisioning can be fun!

PHPCloud is a full-fledged cloud environment for building PHP applications. If you're a PHP developer that hates the hassle of going to IT every time you need a new test environment, PHPCloud is the answer. Sign up and within minutes your environment is ready for you.


There are dozens of other examples. DropBox, SEOmoz, New Relic, Balsamiq, Wix, SlideRocket are some that I used and loved.

The world of software is changing. "Simple" wins.