2 min read

On picking boring technologies

When building a product, pick the technology you know well to focus on shipping.
On picking boring technologies
Photo by Tim Bish / Unsplash

I'm building my SaaS product using technologies that I know extremely well and are rock solid.

I'm using:

I know these all very well. I've used some of them for over a decade (Postgres, looking at you) and the rest as they've come out. I use them at my job, for my side projects, and when doing consulting work.

I'm not learning a lot when I use them. I don't think very hard when I need to write code. I know the APIs, the gotchas, and how to compose them together to ship quickly.

I'm learning how to build a successful product, not technology.

I love learning new things. There is a time and place for learning.

I'll hack on small side projects to learn new technology.

I'll run an experiment with friends or coworkers on a new methodology.

I'll rewrite something (again) in a new language to understand its quirks.

But when you want to start a business, you need to move fast and focus.

Focus on the risks. In my case, it's not "can you write a SaaS." I've been building SaaS products for the last ten years. I know I can make a SaaS. The technology part is not the challenge.

It's all about how I can make something people want.

That's hard. Really hard.

So when you are thinking of building something, be honest with yourself.

Do you want to learn new technology or build something useful?

That should point you in the direction of what tech you use.

Don't ask friends. Don't ask the internet. Don't ask what's popular. If you're doing that, you'll pick something unknown to you and spend your time learning it.

If you want to build something, build it fast. Focus on the user. Your users won't care if you use Next or Nuxt.

They won't care if you React or Preact.

They won't care if you use Java or JavaScript.

They care that your product solves their problem.

So pick the boring technologies. The ones you've been using for years to do your job. The ones you don't think about anymore. The ones that will let you build.

I'm building a suite of internet products to find a better alternative to the next tech job. The first product is a SaaS app that helps manage localizations and copy for your app.

If you want to follow along, please find me on Twitter. It means a lot!