Essays on Technology and Culture

The Noise of the Numbers

While checking my RSS feeds during a little down time at work, I had a realization—I don’t give a flying fuck about the “business” of technology. I don’t care about who sold more phones, made more profit, raised how much funding, or has more leverage in some market. None of it interests me. Maybe if I had more of a financial stake in a company beyond owning and using their products, it might matter to me more, but the financial outlook for any tech company only matters insomuch as it allows them to stay in business while I own and use their products. That’s it.

Few of us, have more than a token financial stake in the companies that make our tools. It’s all emotional. A company’s finances, sales numbers, market share—they’re all just ways to keep score and define a winner in a pointless game. It’s another factoid we can use to root for our side in the miserable factionalism of technology fandom. The impact of the numbers on how and what we can use our tools for is negligible, at best.

I’m opting to tune as much of the financial crap out of my feeds as I can. If the bottom falls out of Apple, or some service I like gets bought out and sunsetted, I’m sure I’ll find out on my own. Money and numbers are always going to be the background chatter of any business. It’s unavoidable. At least I have the power to turn the volume down and focus on what matters to my life and work: good tools, and ways to use them to make better work.