Trends in Mac application development

When I look these days at the applications that I rely on (and enjoy) the most, I note some interesting trends. The best address a highly specific need, are absent of feature bloat, almost never crash, don’t interfere with other applications, are well designed and are developed by small companies (or individuals), most of whom communicate frequently with their users via email and (especially) RSS/weblogs.

Contrast these to large-company applications, characterized by feature bloat, relatively unstable, interfere with other applications, and developed by organizations that are impossible to communicate with, and who have websites that are impossible to use. (Some even force me to read Spanish content, simply because my IP address is in Spain.)

This isn’t to say there are no good applications from medium-sized to larger organizations. There certainly are:

But the conclusion to me seems to be that the best end-user applications are being developed by small groups and individuals that have a passion for what they do, and develop a “relation” with their users, especially through weblogs.

  • Todd

    I couldn’t agree more with your argument. Paul Graham has made a similar argument in “Hackers and Painters.” However, Graham was primarily speaking on the productivity of large vs. small software companies; whereas you are speaking on the quality of the products from large vs. small software companies.

    Nice write-up. I even downloaded a few products I had never heard before.