1994-08-24 - Surveying consumer demand for the info highway

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From: jamesd@netcom.com (James A. Donald)
To: jamesh@netcom.com (James Hightower)
Message Hash: c15c6bad566002a65fc6d4db5ce477563254f93f223dfebce6be30670f1538e8
Message ID: <199408241855.LAA17349@netcom7.netcom.com>
Reply To: <199408241742.KAA17319@netcom17.netcom.com>
UTC Datetime: 1994-08-24 18:55:55 UTC
Raw Date: Wed, 24 Aug 94 11:55:55 PDT

Raw message

From: jamesd@netcom.com (James A. Donald)
Date: Wed, 24 Aug 94 11:55:55 PDT
To: jamesh@netcom.com (James Hightower)
Subject: Surveying consumer demand for the info highway
In-Reply-To: <199408241742.KAA17319@netcom17.netcom.com>
Message-ID: <199408241855.LAA17349@netcom7.netcom.com>
MIME-Version: 1.0
Content-Type: text/plain

James Hightower writes
> it might be a good thing to know in advance what J. Q.
> Consumer will be using so that we can be there with strong, usable
> crypto when he gets there.

High Tech industry has considerable experience with surveys of
consumers for nonexistent products.

Such surveys are useless at best, and dangerous at worst.

The survey invariably shows one of two things:

1.  Whatever the Science fiction writer who rigged the
questions wishes it to show.

2.  The consumer wants what he has already and does not
want anything different.

Back in the dim early days of computing they took a survey
to have consumers (secretaries) design a word processor.  
Numerous marketing experts took part in this study.

They concluded that consumers wanted a word processor that
worked just like a typewriter, and the UI specs were
drawn up accordingly.

We have the right to defend ourselves and our
property, because of the kind of animals that we              James A. Donald
are.  True law derives from this right, not from
the arbitrary power of the omnipotent state.                jamesd@netcom.com