Try this: Keep It Simple, Stupid (MG Siegler is wrong)

First of all, MG Siegler has joined TechCrunch a few weeks ago and he’s by far the best writer TC has ever had. He actually brought back my interest on reading TC after so many bad writers were ruin it (more on that on a future blog post). But MG has a piece on how startups must keep their product simple that I disagree on many levels.

I don’t disagree that simple is good, as long as it gets the job done. And this whole talk about KISS is much easier said than done.

When MG Siegler mentions Twitter, Atebits, Instapaper and others he’s talking about single purpose services. Same thing as Flickr, YouTube or Google search. Multi-purpose products like Facebook, Gmail, Outlook, Windows, etc., are much, much harder to keep it simple.

The “KISS” meme keeps coming back every 6 months or so because some blogger somewhere was presented with a new startup product that should have been simpler, but it’s not. Or he (or she) try to do something on a service they use and can’t figure out how. Then they pile on with examples of successful services that kept it simple (I’m surprised he didn’t mentioned 37Signals on his post).

Then, I come and talk about single-purpose (easy to make it simple) and multi-purpose (hard to make it simple) and I top it all off with a list of products that are not easy to use, not simple, yet they are huge winners, which includes: Windows, Office, MacOS, Linux, Ruby, C#, eBay, Facebook, MySpace, Photoshop, Typepad, etc.

Marcelo Calbucci

Marcelo Calbucci

I'm a technologist, founder, geek, author, and a runner.