Wednesday, April 25, 2012

On Technology and Vendor Presentations

I hate sitting through vendor technology briefs. At the end, everyone's always asking "so, what'd you think". And, frankly, by the time some vendors' sales team is doing a technology brief, they're doing it about technology that's been around, in one form or another, for years - sometimes decades.

Technology generally tends to be iterative (even the "groundbreaking" stuff isn't all that earth-shaking if you were into the things that lead to it). As such, if you've worked with a given set of technology long enough, you can tend to predict where it's likely to (or at least "might") go. Thus, when it finally gets there - particularly when it finally gets there to the point of (sorta) being "easy" - there's just nothing all that surprising about it. So, it's hard to be impressed.

I kinda feel sorry for the people that are presenting the shiny/nifty/"new" stuff. They're spouting off stuff that is "new" to 90% of the people they present it to. Instead, when they run into me, they're hit with a barrage of "this sounds like a combination of technologies X and y: how does it differ from them and what do they have in common", or "this sounds like it's based on a product you bought X years ago: is it that same product and, if so, what have you changed/improved in that product since you bought it" or "this sounds like a product one of your competitors was peddling 'X' month/years ago: how is your version different (or why is does it appear to be missing a competing feature of the older product)".

Oh well.

Overall, I don't care about shiny/new/etc. At the end of the day, all I really care about is "does it solve a problem I haven't already solved" and/or "does it make it easier to do things I'm already doing". The rest is just window-dressing.

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