Fart Apps Prove, Once Again, That The Market Is The Best Decider Of Value

from the economics-101 dept

Over the couple months of existence, Apple's iPhone App Store has received a considerable amount of attention. The successful phone has created an exciting new platform for developers seeking to leverage the advantages of mobile devices. The only problem was, Apple has insisted upon managing the applications in the store - oftentimes without clear guidelines or enforced through NDA.

Apple was in the practice of individually deciding which applications to allow and which to ban, regardless of customer demand. The most curious and paternalistic of Apple's App Store policies was the ban on applications of "limited utility." As a result, developers weren't sure if their hard work would be deemed useful enough to warrant acceptance into the store. Yet, like so many centrally planned economies in the past, this policy failed and Apple began letting in silly applications. However, what may be silly to Apple's gatekeepers may actually prove to be valuable to consumers. Such is the case with a suite of applications that simply produce fart sounds. Dozen exist, and one developer of a fart application is reportedly making nearly $10,000 per day with his crass software. That is the beauty of free markets - consumers and producers can better decide what is valuable than any individual person or firm. The distributed intelligence and preferences are far more capable than Apple's gatekeepers.


Reader Comments (rss)

(Flattened / Threaded)

  1.  
    identicon
    Ron, Dec 24th, 2008 @ 1:00pm

    Ummm

    I don't begrudge some designer developing an application to create a farting iPhone. hey, it's making money. But why would so many people want that app? Are they using it for alarms or ring tones (guess that would clear an elevator)? Just kind of interested in the "why".

     

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  2.  
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    Tony, Dec 24th, 2008 @ 1:32pm

    Its Fun

    Sometimes you're allowed to have fun in life. Sometimes things are a certain way JUST BECAUSE. Things like this are called novelties, people enjoy them because its something neat, different, and usually funny. It doesn't last forever, its just something to get a smile out of yourself and others. People just need a laugh and a smile every once and a while. You should try it.

     

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  3.  
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    Mav, Dec 24th, 2008 @ 2:15pm

    Well, it proves that there are more idiots on the planet Earth then we can count. Novelty app? I'll give you one idea of an app: "Kiss my a$$"

     

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  4.  
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    DueDoe, Dec 24th, 2008 @ 2:36pm

    Nope

    Nope! Only George Bush is the Decirder!

     

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  5.  
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    Ivan, Dec 24th, 2008 @ 2:37pm

    Am I missing irony? Is fart really important to produce during the crisis of capitalism?

     

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  6.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Dec 24th, 2008 @ 2:53pm

    Re: Ummm

    Ron, you do live on this planet, right? :o)

     

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  7.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Dec 24th, 2008 @ 3:44pm

    recession

    Americans buy "fart" apps (or similar useless stuff) by borrowing money from chinese. Explains why USA is in recession.

    Have you even heard the word "conservation"?

     

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  8.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Dec 24th, 2008 @ 4:40pm

    You think "Who would be stupid enough to spend hard money on an inane app?". I think "Hey! Someone's making $10K a day for something simple!"

     

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  9.  
    identicon
    Any Moose, Dec 24th, 2008 @ 6:09pm

    ForumFart

    I'm introducing a new application: FormFart. It's a gullibility detector and emits a loud fart in forums where people are susceptible to misreporting, hype and other general nonsense. I expect to sell for at least $200,000,000.

    BRAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAAP!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Now where's my money?

     

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  10.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Dec 24th, 2008 @ 6:34pm

    Re: Its Fun

    Busting a good fart always makes me smile.

     

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  11.  
    identicon
    Joe Schmoe, Dec 25th, 2008 @ 1:06am

    hehehe, Look for PalmPuke if you have a Palm

     

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  12.  
    identicon
    Lawrence D'Oliveiro, Dec 25th, 2008 @ 12:41pm

    Market Fundamentals?

    Sure, the market for these apps may be riding high right now, but how strong are the fundamentals, really, when the product is basically built on, um, a variety of hot air? Isn't this just another bubble that's going to leave a nasty mess when it bursts?

     

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  13.  
    identicon
    gene_cavanaugh, Dec 25th, 2008 @ 3:08pm

    Apple's Gatekeepers

    I find myself in the surprising position of agreeing with Michael on almost everything; but I will add something to this. Recently, Apple seems to be striving for control so much that their applications (even .pdf and .doc, of all things!) don't always "play" with other systems. A friend of mine bought an Apple about a month ago; first, her .zip files were unreadable on either my linux box or on Windows, then her .pdf files printed poorly, then a .doc she sent me was unreadable.
    Since, as an IP attorney, communication is "where it is", I have told her to simply put materials in email bodies or snail mail; not a good thing for Apple.

     

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  14.  
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    Jesse, Dec 25th, 2008 @ 10:51pm

    Woopy cushions sold well, didn't they? This isn't too different.

     

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  15.  
    identicon
    Mark Regan, Dec 26th, 2008 @ 12:25am

    Ahh, America!

    The land of opportunity and innovation. Where a hardworking programmer can get filthy rich from a day's work developing a "fart" program, and a hardworking father can't earn enough money working on an assembly line to pay for food for his kids.

    The problem is MORE than Apple. It has something to do with our redefining of the term "work ethic" and what rich people spend their money on.

    We poorer Americans are too concerned with survival and trying to educate our kids to worry about Apple's policies of stifling or rewarding innovators dealing in fart sounds.

    I, personally, am waiting for an enterprising programmer to design a program that predicts something useful, like when our leaders will realize that billionaires cannot make money when the poor citizens have NO money to spend on "fart" programs.

    We've got to find ways to allow the people on the bottom rungs of the ladder have more discretionary income. Simply printing more money and spreading it around amongst the wealthy will NOT result in a healthier economy.

    The programmer who figures out a way to develop a program such as this will benefit not only himself but everyone else.

     

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  16.  
    icon
    PaulT (profile), Dec 26th, 2008 @ 3:16am

    Re: Ahh, America!

    There are literally millions of great programs out there with high educational and productive value, from the simple calendar and calculator programs to applications that allow you to manage your finances, learn another language, communicate with everyone else on the planet and even give your money to charity.

    However, it's a free country. If someone has money to waste and they decide a fart program is going to be the best use of that money, that's between them and the programmer. Not Apple, and not you. Besides, how do you know that the programmer who created this application is not giving the proceeds to charity, or or using that money to employ Americans like yourself?

    As for when your leaders will realise that poor schmucks like yourself have no money thanks to those evil billionaires - what are you waiting for? If you get up off your fat arse and do something about it (like, say, taking part in politics or learning how to program the app you want to have released) instead of whining for someone else to do something, then it will happen. I accept that not everyone has the same education and opportunity, but crying about your lack of money and prospects on an anonymous internet forum ain't going to make it happen for you. Stop waiting for someone else to improve your life, and do it yourself. Now.

     

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  17.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Dec 26th, 2008 @ 6:19pm

    Re: Ummm

    This is the fart generation.
    Fake
    Arrogant
    Remorseless
    Twits

     

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  18.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Dec 26th, 2008 @ 6:23pm

    Re: Ahh, America!

    It's about American values. The "fart" program is for entertainment and Americans value entertainment above all else.

     

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  19.  
    identicon
    Anonymous Coward, Dec 26th, 2008 @ 6:29pm

    Re: Re: Ahh, America!

    However, it's a free country.
    Yes, and that includes the freedom to post comments and opinions on blogs.
    If you get up off your fat arse and do something about it (like, say, taking part in politics or learning how to program the app you want to have released) instead of whining for someone else to do something, then it will happen.
    You just didn't say when, did you?

     

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  20.  
    identicon
    Yakko Warner, Dec 29th, 2008 @ 9:09am

    And yet...

    And yet the "boob physics simulator" program is still denied.

    There is still no justice in the iPhone store... ;)

     

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  21.  
    identicon
    sana, Jan 8th, 2009 @ 10:48am

    hi guys, the best rapidshare search engine, I found so far is
    www.checkedsearch.com - it has almost no ads and checks the displyed
    results for broken rapidshare links. really unique feature. I find
    relevant results on the fist page mostly

     

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  22.  
    identicon
    jack, Nov 2nd, 2009 @ 2:36pm

    darn

    whatever!!!

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]


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