Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Flash vs Substance

I like to keep up on currents and trends in tech. I want to read up on where Information Technology is going, not going, selling, developing, and so on. But I want substance in that information. And, lately, I'm not getting it. What am I getting?

Slideshows. 5 important technologies, 15 books to read, I can't go a full business day without another email with a link to another slideshow. Another Flash slideshow. Not flashy, although I'm sure that the Web developers think otherwise. Flash. See, it appears that some genius in some editorial back room decided that, since a picture is worth 1,000 words, what do 10 pictures do for us?

As it turns out, not much at all. Using Flash to tie together some grouping of uninformative pictures with two or three sentences off to one side, that's not reporting, or journalism. It's a way to squeeze 10,000 useless words into some vapid, ADHD-induced puppet show that says nothing, informs no one, and leaves the reader with time they will never get back, and that accomplished nothing.

Ziff-Davis, CNET, and all the magazines you Borg'd into your respective organizations, what exactly is the business you're in? If it's to simply toss content out into the Internet and see what people will click on, keep on keeping on. You're there. If, instead, you're looking to be a relevant source of Information Technology insight and relevant information, someone needs to be fired in your editorial department.

I said above that I can't go one day without another vapid link to another vapid slideshow built in Flash. Actually, I lied. I've just gone a week without an email like that.

I unsubscribed to everything ZD, CNET, et al, put out. I haven't had to sit through a slide show in more than a week.


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