True Tools. That’s how I think of software & utilities that end up being indispensible. From Microsoft Windows & Office to Google & Expedia, to Gmail to Twitter. These are solutions that simple do what they were supposed to do without any fuss or muss.
We all have our favorite tools that end up work out well for us, some may prefer Linux or Mac over Windows, or Yahoo! over Google, or OpenOffice over Microsoft Office. The point being that once we stumble upon something that simply works and really solves a need we have for a task, we tend to stick with it. There are many good reasons for this, the most important one being that they save time.
That doesnâ€™t exclude us from exploring new options, which is how we find the hidden gems anyway. Thereâ€™s always going to be a better way, sometimes it takes longer for a significantly improved solution to evolve.
Take office productivity for example. For my purposes, Microsoft Office has no equal. Thatâ€™s not to say there isnâ€™t competition. Only that for the work I do in the time I have available to do it, there are few viable options. The few options that exist require compromise in one way or another that I simply canâ€™t accommodate at this time.
Social tools are a neat example of continuously experimenting with new ideas as well as technology. For the last couple years, social media types have been watching for that next big, better social network to join. The reality is that there may not be one for some time. Looking at the main options that have any value, itâ€™s clear that Facebook, MySpace, and LinkedIn are the heavy hitters. Because of the number of people (user base), you can get value out of these networks. Itâ€™s likely that youâ€™ll find associates and friends on these networks.
So, while itâ€™s fun to explore and discover new software, new ideas, and new tools, itâ€™s the ones that get the job done with the least amount of effort expended that we stick with.
Photo credit: Jim Frazier