I was out with a friend at work recently and I we were together berating the common media. I work at a large corporate consulting firm as a software engineer and IT systems consultant and of the few people I find like minded enough to enjoy conversation with I find that I always have to slowly introduce new political ideas, musics, movies and other media to them slowly. I don’t want to scare them away. It’s like trying to feed a stray cat. They’ve been in the alleyways long enough that they’re justifyibly wary folk.
I started to mention that I get my daily news from The Guardian UK’s american news section and said that though that was a decent "what happend last night" site, it was still not the place to get real analysis. He interrupted me and said "oh you don’t get your news from like… a ZINE or something…?". No, I don’t get my real news from a zine, but it made me reflect on how much perceptions of the quality of much to the people around me (includng me) are unfortuantely influenced by how nice the paper is, how shiny and slick and ‘web 2.0′ the website is. It’s a real shame that we judge books by covers and websites by AJAX. The content is what counts of course but that seems to be just in our genes.
Long story short, I’m really, really happy to see both the ruby (I’m assuming on rails) version of the website. It makes me feel warm and fuzzy. I feel more confident in making my friends look. I’m almost as happy about the shiny new magazine paper in the new issues of ZMAG. One day I’m going to take over the development and administration of this site as a web application –It will be implemented in SCALA =D — that’s a dream of mine. Until then, way to go IT team Z. You’ve made it a much more enjoyable place to live.