Brian Austin

January 30, 2023

Working at Chipotle so I can skip streaming ads and subscribe to newsletters

Always Money in the Burrito Stand 

A break from layoff talk this week, as it’s all-over social media. I would like to point out that, for now at least, there are companies still hiring. 

Minor downgrade from free food, massages, and pet therapy.. but at least you don't have to dress up in a costume. Dot com 1.0 survivors are here for support.

Are you smarter than ChatGPT 

Microsoft announced they would include ChatGPT along with Microsoft Azure, and then did the most Microsoft thing ever: Put it behind a bunch of enterprise bull crap. 💩

True story: Attempted to enable Open AI in my Azure account and it asked me for a kidney. I refused, because I need my kidney, but also because I have an account directly on Open AI (which I pay for). 
AI is overheated/overrated right now.  Everyone wants it to be the next big thing, especially with the dumpster fire of Crypto.  But much like the early Internet, we are a LONG way from anything truly useful, and to the point profitable. 

Sure, it will enhance searches and help with content generation and scam detection. But it is, comically, not coming for your programming job. 

Like our Zine? 

These days everyone has a newsletter, self-included. While you can debate the necessary nature of this instance, I can say that I thoroughly rely on my email feed of info to keep me informed. 
That said, don't y'all think this newsletter thing has done got out of hand? Hashnode, one of my technical daily drivers, has an email list option.  Maybe we've hit peak newsletter? 

Then on the other hand sites like the Dispatch have started to offer RSS feeds again. Wait, is this somehow related to Gen Z resurrecting Nirvana t-shirts and fanny packs?   

 Headed off a Cliff 

“Sir you going to need to pay for that” might well become the slogan of 2023. I recommend Adam Singer’s excellent analysis of Advertising trends and where the future is headed. The lone holdout of traditional advertising, billboards, are the last category standing.  

Folks like Bob Iger are warning that traditional TV is going to head off a precipice. Streaming might replace it, but probably not for long. Many viewers can afford $10-20 per month to simply opt out of commercials, leaving only lower value eyeballs. 

It’s a compelling theory that makes me wonder what will happen to Internet companies that depend on ad dollars for revenue. Privacy actions by Apple cut deeply into Google and Facebook.  Now the algorithms of Instagram and TikTok are again changing the strategy for marketers to buy impressions. 

It’s a mixed-up world and I can’t help but think that many of the freebies we’ve enjoyed will slowly drift behind more paywalls and paid services. 

About Brian Austin

A software engineer building products and services for smaller companies. This newsletter syndicates all of my LinkedIn content.

For AI project updates check out Project Maestro on Substack.

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