When I was a kid growing up in Southern California, there was a phone number you could call to find out what time it was. It was a local number, 853-1212 (easy to remember as the arrangement of the numbers on the keypad made a capital T), and I used it all the time, to set my watch, adjust the alarm clock, fix the display on the VCR. I don’t recall the last time I used it, probably sometime in the mid ’90s, but I do remember clearly the sound of the voice at the other end of the line.
As a developer, I get lots of ideas for web apps—little things, mostly: nifty ways to keep track of my kids’ allowances, habit trackers, shopping lists. Most of them, however, never see the light of day, and not just because I’m lazy; I also tend to get hung up trying to decide what to use for the technology stack.