9. The Update Mafia

Do not fall for the industry tricks, stay free.


Remember the good-ol' times when you bought something and it was yours, forever? When you owned things? Fast forward to today, and realize that you only rent things, you do not own anything like before.

It is true for material possessions as well, but also true for services and virtual goods. Thanks to the invention of planned obsolescence, yield management, and now the subscription model, you are hard to find anything that you can really own with a peace of mind...

So, long story short, here is the takeaway: focus on anything that you can still own, cherish them, hunt them down, and try to get out of the eternal treadmill.

Here are some ideas.

Try to live without gadgets, vehicles, fixed assets. It is hard, but possible.

If you need to live with material possessions, ask yourself the following questions:

  1. Do I really need it? If not, you are done. Move on. If yes, read on.
  2. Can I rent it? If yes (cheaper, better), do it. If not, read on.
  3. Can I buy it, in the sense I really own it? Fantastic. More likely not, so read on.
  4. Who is behind this thing? Do your due diligence: if dandy, buy it. If not, read on.
  5. Look for competitors. Found a good one? Done. Cannot find one? Read on.
  6. Exit strategy? What if it fails? Backup plans okay? Done. No exit? Give up.

Some practical advice for the modern man:

  1. Do not fall for the "you need to be updated to be safe" trick. Update less often.
  2. Do not buy the newest things, ever. Wait and buy the second-newest thing.
  3. If the second-newest thing is still an overkill, look for the oldest solution.
  4. If neither the second-newest nor the oldest works, look for an optimized solution.

Use this logic for both hardware and software.

If you need concrete advice for a specific case, contact me in private.