On the Folly of Men: “Stop giving ETAs”

Time, and people wasting it. The crime isn’t what you feel, but you wasting everyone else’s time because of your own folly. When stupidity isn’t simply BORNE, but imposed on others.

There is this recurrent theme about people, organizations or whatever, having a project, having a plan, this project or plan being naturally incomplete, and so slipping away. That gap between knowledge and reality.

Cause and effect.

ETAs are given for projects people are looking up to. To manage expectations, without offering too many details: expectations thrive in blindness.

Then problems appear, delays happen. Long after delays happen people come to terms with them, until that gap between the internal and external knowledge has to be filled and those working on the project have to communicate those waiting outside that their expectations haven’t matched reality.

But who’s to blame for the irritation and disappointment when the internal and the external misaligned? We are so obviously in need of a scapegoat.

Because of blindness, because the cause is not seen, silly people think the problem is ETA and not the intervening things that caused delays.

Irritation causes people looking for something to be angry that. ETA is the convenient scapegoat, but since it’s just rhetorical, it doesn’t work. It’s illusory. Stopping giving ETAs doesn’t magically stop people from asking.

So delays happen anyway, and stopping giving official ETA only causes hundreds more people constantly asking for updates. Causing more irritation, causing more delays.

Imagine if the authors, rather than conveniently blaming their own ETA, simply had a message pinned clearly on their Discord saying: “due to xyz problems we are unable to respect end of the year deadline. New ETA is early/mid/late 2024”. And maybe write a few lines about the technical causes.

The immediate consequence is that threads like this one wouldn’t have existed. People would be educated about the nature of delays, and everyone would move on.

People don’t like the shortest path. They love taking infinite detours, and complain endlessly about their woes. Even if they are entirely their own making.

Keep believing, stay blind: light debases.

Technically: the nature of the problems rising around ETAs is the misalignment between internal and external states. It simply follow that the only way to resolve these problems is through MORE information. Not less. Enjoy a Sanderson.

“It will release when it’s ready” overlaps with “it releases when it releases”. It’s a tautology. Using tautologies means you love adding noise to the signal we all share. You love polluting shared spaces.

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