Dear 43 Things Users,

10 years after introducing 43 Things to the world, we have decided we have met our last goal: completing the incredible experience that has been 43 Things. Please join us in giving one last cheer to all the folks who have shared their goals with the world, as well as all the people who have worked at The Robot Co-op to build this incredible website. We won a Webby Award, published a book, and brought happiness to a lot of people.

Starting today, 43 Things users can export their goals and entries from the site. Starting August 15, we will make the site “read only”. 43 Things users will still be able to view the site and export their content, but we won’t be taking any new content from users. We hope to leave the site up for folks to see and download their content until the end of the year. Ending on New Year’s Eve takes us full circle.

It has been a long ride (one of our original goals was to "build a company that lasts at least 2 years” - we beat that one!) While we wish the site could live on, it has suffered from a number of challenges - changes in how people use the site, the advertising industry, and how search engines view the site. We wish the outcome was different – but we’ve always been realistic about when our goals are met and when they aren't.

As of today, you will be able to download your goals and entries. See more about that on the FAQ page. Thanks for 10 great years of goal-setting and achieving.

- The Robots.

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IraHave had a lot on my mind lately

and been dealing with it emotionally I guess by going into full-on geek mode and learning, learning, learning. Which is good, but makes me a little uncommunicative. Anyway.

Got an ASUS Eee 1000HE netbook, which is lovely, and installed Ubuntu on it to dual-boot with the XP – got to understand why Windows has such a dominant market share. Ubuntu, supposedly the most user-friendly of the Linux distros, still has some way to go to being… user-friendly. I mean I’m no expert, but I know my way around a computer, and was still too often left feeling lost – can’t imagine what the average non-technically-minded user would feel (at least without a knowledgeable relative/friend/tech support to set everything up just right for them.)

Ubuntu does have a good support forum, but when I google to find the answers, they all seem to require the command line – which just isn’t friendly to beginners. Especially with the linux/unix program and command names being often, it seems to me, particularly unhelpful – was it that bad in DOS? I don’t remember – they had to work with the 8.3 limit too. Maybe I’ve just been spoiled by mostly using graphical user interfaces all these years? But y’know, it is 2009 – IMHO, only the more technical tasks on a computer should require the command line.

Not that I’m against the command line – I’m going to learn it, I’m learning it, and I enjoy the sense of control and mastery when I know what’s going on behind the scenes. But having to read the documentation and remember how to use the arguments for even the simplest program just cannot be more convenient than using the most basic GUI for most people. Most people would never have the patience, time, interest or inclination to learn the command line. The Read The Fucking Manual attitude just isn’t compatible with the stated goal of increased adoption.

All that said, I am excited about the potential of open-source software, and being in control of the details and having the ability to directly change what I like and don’t like, and to add to, alter or create whatever I want. And I’m excited about the possibility of contributing towards free software community projects. I love that about Linux, and about the free software and open-source movements. I just wish they have more consideration for the less technically-minded user, who would have little interest in getting over the steep learning curve. And I wish they had better documentation. I hope one day I can, instead of complaining about these things, work on improving them. I have many ideas. :) 5 years ago

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