Thursday, October 20, 2005

Lifehacker Considers Dangers of Web apps

Ask Lifehacker Readers: Web apps hosting your info: "Call me paranoid, but what if Gmail goes down, or Google decides to stop being "not evil"? What if angry project management trolls hack 37 Signals and record my every to-do, building a too-personal-for-comfort profile of my every day activities? What if disappears? What if Flickr, who has photos of my baby nephews and the inside of my house, is really in the surveillance business?"
It definitely has occurred to me that we're taking a risk by moving to Web-hosted applications. And I do have a domain name ( that I'm not using, which could be the home of a Web app of my own, combining the features of Gmail, Flickr, and Writely, assuming one existed or I spawn a new self to create one from scratch. But then you also lose the benefits of scale with those social applications. Other Flickr members help me identify my best photos and categorize them. Gmail's millions of users refine its spam filters. subscribers recommend sites I never would have known existed.

Perhaps the best solution is to keep a personal copy of all of that data, so that you can go elsewhere quickly.

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