Skip

Yo.
June 23, 2014 1:52 PM   Subscribe


 
Oy
posted by gwint at 1:54 PM on June 23, 2014 [44 favorites]


the dead canary in the coalmine to warn us we are in the midst of another tech bubble.
posted by el io at 1:56 PM on June 23, 2014 [20 favorites]


(yeah, sure, the dead canary has just been given a million dollars, and a ton of us wish we were as dead as that canary, but i stick by my point)
posted by el io at 1:56 PM on June 23, 2014 [20 favorites]


Count me in the "I don't get it". Delta might want to Yo me when a plane arrives? Er--why does texting not work in this circumstance? Yo seems to be preferable only where you don't want to bother with a full text because more meaning is unnecessary, which seems not entirely stupid on a personal level but useless for anything that might ever make the developer money. $1.2 million in venture funding with no actual plan for how it's going to make money because some guy wanted to be able to ping his assistant without actually typing two letters into a text message. Dear lord.
posted by Sequence at 1:57 PM on June 23, 2014 [4 favorites]


shit like this is the cherry on top of my nihilism cake. I say bring on the asteroid.
posted by photoslob at 1:57 PM on June 23, 2014 [30 favorites]


Good for him.
posted by Foci for Analysis at 1:57 PM on June 23, 2014 [3 favorites]


Yo?
posted by boo_radley at 1:58 PM on June 23, 2014


I don’t remember the last time I messaged someone to say that I was thinking about them, or the last time that I received a message of that nature, but I think about people all day. Nice thoughts. From now on, I’ll just Yo them.

I don't even know how to...to...

It's okay to think about people without telling them about it. Even nice thoughts.

When they said that generation Z would communicate in images rather than words, I dealt with it. If generation -Z communicates in a single uninflected syllable, it's time for me to move to the mountains and live in a tent.
posted by Frowner at 1:58 PM on June 23, 2014 [8 favorites]


I would have been so happy if a mod had locked this thread with just gwint's comment. Perfection.
posted by Wretch729 at 1:59 PM on June 23, 2014 [14 favorites]


And you could just text someone "yo". I believe I have received this very text, and knew it to indicate that, like, my friend had arrived and was waiting for me to unlock the door since our doorbell was broken.
posted by Frowner at 1:59 PM on June 23, 2014 [2 favorites]


Hodor.
posted by Faint of Butt at 1:59 PM on June 23, 2014 [57 favorites]


I enjoyed this app for the two days I had it installed. The New Yorker article gets it exactly right: there's an expectation in other apps that you should respond; a "yo" doesn't demand that. But then it got hacked and that's why we can't have nice things.
posted by eamondaly at 2:01 PM on June 23, 2014 [2 favorites]


Yo could be great in a lot of instances, where you don't really want to divulge your email or phone number and just need a simple "affirmative" or "ready now" or "ok" response. Like other recently invented communication media (Tumblr, Twitter, Instagram) it's not going to be immediately clear, at inception, how it will be used longterm.
posted by 2bucksplus at 2:02 PM on June 23, 2014


A similar app idea from Twitter:
Phones-in-hell app idea: Spasm. Send a silent notification—no message/name, just triggers vibration—feels like phantom muscle spasm. -- @rianmurnen
posted by schmod at 2:03 PM on June 23, 2014 [9 favorites]


My coworker suggested we hurry up and develop Gabba Gabba.
posted by hypersloth at 2:03 PM on June 23, 2014 [14 favorites]


Count me in the "I don't get it". Delta might want to Yo me when a plane arrives? Er--why does texting not work in this circumstance?

It's ambiguous! Delta might want you to know your flight's ready, or it might want to hook up with you.

If I was a tech innovator I would disrupt this with an app that just lets you bounce Marco/Polo messages back and forth.
posted by prize bull octorok at 2:03 PM on June 23, 2014 [20 favorites]


Phones-in-hell app idea

This joke was started by Gruber, of daring fireball. In fact, he made that joke about this app.

It's totally on point and funny as hell, though.
posted by emptythought at 2:05 PM on June 23, 2014 [2 favorites]


YoYoBeenz
posted by SharkParty at 2:05 PM on June 23, 2014 [11 favorites]


Facebook Pokes are so long forgotten we had to reinvent them.
posted by Nelson at 2:07 PM on June 23, 2014 [28 favorites]


If I was a tech innovator I would disrupt this with an app that just lets you bounce Marco/Polo messages back and forth.

That's not the worst idea I've heard all day.
posted by Nonsteroidal Anti-Inflammatory Drug at 2:07 PM on June 23, 2014 [15 favorites]


This might be the beginning of me officially being too goddamn old to understand anything. It comes.
posted by naju at 2:07 PM on June 23, 2014 [6 favorites]


I don't even know how to...to...

Just put your lips together and "yo."
posted by griphus at 2:07 PM on June 23, 2014 [23 favorites]


Hodor.
posted by You Can't Tip a Buick at 2:09 PM on June 23, 2014 [6 favorites]


Colorwhee.li - Send your friends the color you are feeling. See how your friends are feeling too. (Later, pivot to dating app based on complementary colors.)
posted by 2bucksplus at 2:12 PM on June 23, 2014 [5 favorites]


I'm assuming these people went ahead and built a full Facebook clone then ripped out everything but the Pokes.
posted by brundlefly at 2:13 PM on June 23, 2014 [2 favorites]


It comes.

New idea: Zalgo app that sends random strings of menacing unicode characters to your friends, just to let them know "hey, I'm thinking about you," but in an unsettling way they should be concerned about
posted by prize bull octorok at 2:14 PM on June 23, 2014 [61 favorites]


I am actually afraid to read the links, just in case I go insane from the horror of it all.
posted by blurker at 2:15 PM on June 23, 2014


YO CAN DO ANYTHING AT ZOMBOCOM
posted by stenseng at 2:16 PM on June 23, 2014 [15 favorites]


Rowsdower.
posted by TheWhiteSkull at 2:16 PM on June 23, 2014 [6 favorites]


And you could just text someone "yo".

That's soooooooo pre-millenial. I mean, you might as well use email.
posted by bonehead at 2:18 PM on June 23, 2014 [4 favorites]


...just to let them know "hey, I'm thinking about you," but in an unsettling way they should be concerned about

Our new app Dejar lets you send your friends a photo of them doing something they intend to do in the future but have not done yet, to playfully remind them that free will is an illusion and all choices are meaningless.
posted by griphus at 2:20 PM on June 23, 2014 [61 favorites]


there's an expectation in other apps that you should respond; a "yo" doesn't demand that.

Clearly, a technological solution to a social problem.
posted by Pogo_Fuzzybutt at 2:21 PM on June 23, 2014 [1 favorite]


Y?
posted by Blue Meanie at 2:22 PM on June 23, 2014 [1 favorite]


This is like the pet rock of apps.
posted by octothorpe at 2:23 PM on June 23, 2014 [15 favorites]


My office has gotten pretty big in to Yo. It's basically used entirely to fuck around - Yo-ing people you know are in a meeting on the off chance that their phone isn't on silent is a favorite (and I've seen it nail someone already today). Worth a million bucks? Hell no. Fun? Yeah, in a fashion.
posted by Itaxpica at 2:23 PM on June 23, 2014 [8 favorites]


Yo? No quiero.
posted by Splunge at 2:25 PM on June 23, 2014 [3 favorites]


I don't know, now that Silk Road is no longer functioning, maybe there's an illegitimate use for this in certain circles...
posted by Chuffy at 2:25 PM on June 23, 2014 [2 favorites]


Pinger: you sent a message "Where are you"; recipient has two options: ignore, or send an auto reply with coordinates, maybe even ground speed and likely ETA. No more texting back and forth "i'm at blank and blank/I'll be there in 15/waiting for a cab/etc.". You can set it to auto-reply coordinates when driving, or always share location within a select group of contacts.
posted by 2bucksplus at 2:26 PM on June 23, 2014 [5 favorites]


Can I squirt someone a "Yo" from my Zune? 'Cause that would be convergent.
posted by benito.strauss at 2:30 PM on June 23, 2014 [10 favorites]


My big problem with the show Silicon Valley as a parody was that the main characters had actually created something useful instead of something like this.

The Cheesecake Factory might want to Yo you when your table’s ready.

I hope to God this never happens to me for a number of reasons.

"... But it’s a whole new way for communication! A hundred and forty characters is way too much these days… It’s lightweight, easy, you don’t have to open a message—the notification itself is everything you need.”

Also known as: a beeper.
posted by codacorolla at 2:33 PM on June 23, 2014 [7 favorites]


My new app POTS allows you to ring a bell in another room, signalling your desire to communicate to someone. They can then "answer" the "ring" and you can send voice messages to each other in real-time. This app only works in particular rooms with a POTS connection, so there is no pressure to respond if you are not in such a room.
posted by a dangerous ruin at 2:34 PM on June 23, 2014 [34 favorites]


Can I just get an app that emits an anguished howl of unutterable despair at random intervals? With an option to leave it on silent, of course, so the howls go unheard in an empty void. I would totally pay $1.99 for a perfect little metaphor for the human condition like that.
posted by prize bull octorok at 2:37 PM on June 23, 2014 [21 favorites]


Can I squirt someone a "Yo" from my Zune? 'Cause that would be convergent.

Gross.
posted by my favorite orange at 2:37 PM on June 23, 2014 [2 favorites]


They should add another message, so you can do binary coding, and then implement SMTP on top of that.
posted by Dr Dracator at 2:37 PM on June 23, 2014 [10 favorites]


So I posted this in an earlier thread, but this is just a crappy version of "Ping! Inc." from the short story Generation E: The Emoticon Generation, by Israeli sci-fi writer Guy Hasson:

"There are only two words people really need to be able to say," Fox explains. "One says ‘give me attention’, the other says ‘bug off’. That’s it. Start to finish. If you have food on your plate, and you are not fighting for your life, the only vocabulary you’ll need is those two words." Ironically, in Ping! Fox has come up with exactly two words, but different than the ones he insists we need to say. It began with only one word.
posted by effbot at 2:39 PM on June 23, 2014 [1 favorite]


In early May, a product evangelist and tech blogger from San Francisco, Robert Scoble, visited Hogeg. Hogeg showed him Yo and asked for his feedback. "This is the stupidest, most addictive app I've ever seen in my life," Scoble told him.

ROTFL.
posted by entropicamericana at 2:49 PM on June 23, 2014


And that's coming from a noted Google Glass enthusiast [Scoble].
posted by 2bucksplus at 2:53 PM on June 23, 2014


Time to start training ravens to carry IP packets.
posted by localroger at 2:54 PM on June 23, 2014


Time to start training ravens to carry IP packets.

Shouldn't be too hard. That's basically a hardware-level modification of RFC 1149.
posted by Mr. Bad Example at 2:58 PM on June 23, 2014 [9 favorites]


Yeah but then Scoble posted Yo to Product Hunt and then investors got interested.
posted by sweetkid at 2:58 PM on June 23, 2014 [1 favorite]


>> Can I squirt someone a "Yo" from my Zune? 'Cause that would be convergent.

> Gross.
> posted by my favorite orange


Don't blame me, blame Ballmer.
posted by benito.strauss at 3:04 PM on June 23, 2014


I love this totally fucking absurd confederacy of dunces tech future we are living in. It's way more entertaining than living in snowcrash.
posted by Annika Cicada at 3:08 PM on June 23, 2014 [14 favorites]


All I want is an app called "Wooster" which only sends "Right Ho!".

Or, maybe one called "Hodor" which only sends "Hodor!"

Or something which sends no message at all, only the name of the sender. The ultimate in minimalistic communication, which will also have the ultimate in minimalistic advertising, i.e., "Cheesecake Factory" appears in your notification bar every so often.
posted by honestcoyote at 3:11 PM on June 23, 2014 [5 favorites]


Can I squirt someone a "Yo" from my Zune? 'Cause that would be convergent.

You've received a squirt from benito.strauss! How would you like to respond?

    [ Gleek ]
    [ Thack ]
    [ Spute ]
[ Knuckle Punch ]

posted by prize bull octorok at 3:18 PM on June 23, 2014 [9 favorites]


Might as well just jump forward to the Captain Pike wheelchair from Star Trek with the blinking YES light.
posted by Celsius1414 at 3:19 PM on June 23, 2014 [4 favorites]


Yos are used as verifications ("Yo, I made it home from school"), acts of thoughtfulness ("Yo, I'm thinking of you") and as alerts ("Yo, I need your help").
But how are you supposed to know which? Even Lassie the dog communicates better than this.
posted by Rangi at 3:24 PM on June 23, 2014 [10 favorites]


Darmok, an app that only communicates in historical allusions.
posted by indubitable at 3:28 PM on June 23, 2014 [31 favorites]


Now I'm imagining someone getting a Yo message after a first date and freaking out about it for days. Dissecting its implications and possibilites. Does he like me like me? Was it meaningless? Is it a booty call? Am I just fun and games for him? That's it, I'm calling it off. But it's too early in the relationship to break up via text. I'll just send a Yo back and he'll know what it means.
posted by naju at 3:34 PM on June 23, 2014 [23 favorites]


Darmok, an app that only communicates in historical allusions.

Auto translates normal sentences into said allusions, without revealing what the person receiving will see to the person sending the message.

For receiving, you take a short quiz on install, which gives the app a set of allusions you're likely to understand. Which is then discards.
posted by maxwelton at 3:35 PM on June 23, 2014 [8 favorites]


But how are you supposed to know which? Even Lassie the dog communicates better than this.

Now I'm imagining someone getting a Yo message after a first date and freaking out about it for days. Dissecting its implications and possibilites.


Obviously, they need to sell Yo Inflections™ as an in-app purchase to clarify the intents of your Yos, allowing you to communicate such subtleties as "Yo, I have fallen in a well and need urgent assistance," or "Yo, I would feel awkward immediately going no-contact after our first date but this is the last you will ever hear from me on my own initiative."
posted by prize bull octorok at 3:42 PM on June 23, 2014 [7 favorites]


> You've received a squirt from benito.strauss! How would you like to respond?
....
[ Knuckle Punch ]


Dang, this keeps happening. I might need to reconsider my posting style.
posted by benito.strauss at 3:46 PM on June 23, 2014 [2 favorites]


Yo could be great in a lot of instances, where you don't really want to divulge your email or phone number and just need a simple "affirmative" or "ready now" or "ok" response. Like other recently invented communication media (Tumblr, Twitter, Instagram) it's not going to be immediately clear, at inception, how it will be used longterm.

I don't get this. You have to divulge something, at least your Yo username. At that point, why isn't it better to use Twitter or Skype or something instead?
posted by ymgve at 3:53 PM on June 23, 2014


I will create an app that just transmits fart sounds, and buy an island and submarine. Yesiree.
posted by dbiedny at 4:10 PM on June 23, 2014 [3 favorites]


This is even stupider than the Twitter Big Ben Clock, which has 441K followers.
posted by localroger at 4:26 PM on June 23, 2014 [5 favorites]


No one else is thinking emperor's new wardrobe? I mean, it was released on April 1st and all...
posted by mitschlag at 4:26 PM on June 23, 2014


the dead canary in the coalmine to warn us we are in the midst of another tech bubble.

See the strategy here is that you give $1.2 million to a dead canary, but also $1.2 to a live one and also a few million split between a dozen dead horses. That way it doesn't matter whether your dead canary chirps or not, Google will come along and buy at least one of the dead horses.
posted by bradbane at 4:54 PM on June 23, 2014 [1 favorite]


Hodor.
posted by nicwolff at 4:57 PM on June 23, 2014 [2 favorites]


My roommate and I convinced way too many people to get Yo accounts as a joke this past weekend. We're kind of assholes.
posted by azarbayejani at 5:10 PM on June 23, 2014 [1 favorite]


Shouldn't be too hard. That's basically a hardware-level modification of RFC 1149.
In September 2010, ISP Timico UK pitted a few homing pigeons against a rural broadband connection to see which was faster. Each pigeon carried a microSD card with 200 MB of HD video data, while simultaneously a typical Internet connection was used to upload the same video data to YouTube. This was done to raise awareness of poor Internet speeds experienced by many rural users.[14][15]
That was a more interesting article than I expected.
posted by Wolfdog at 5:14 PM on June 23, 2014 [2 favorites]


at least it creates a concept of "yogrammers" to help clarify our derision: it will mean people who predominantly devote their efforts to creating get-rick-quick fart apps or fart-like apps for phones
posted by thelonius at 5:15 PM on June 23, 2014 [9 favorites]


This is like the pet rock of apps.

You should make that. You have to pet it so many times an hour or it starts to get mossy. If you leave it alone for too long it starts to cry. There will be muffled crying coming from your pocket. If you give it plenty of attention it makes soothing noises. You cannot turn it off or disable it.
posted by Ray Walston, Luck Dragon at 5:19 PM on June 23, 2014 [6 favorites]


Sometimes I want to think that Yo is also kind of awesome. I have too many conflicting feelings. There's something about Yo that makes me feel like it's some kind of Zen thing. Like, is it something completely empty-headed and stupid, or is it something that you only reach after hours of clearing your head in meditation.

The funniest part about how much me and my friends have been talking about Yo is that we've pretty much just wanted it to do stuff that other apps already do, or do stuff that makes absolutely no sense (and it's mainly been stuff Snapchat already does).

"Wouldn't it be cool if you could Yo someone with a picture?"...
"I wish you could see when another person gets your Yo"
"How about if you could record your own Yo sound?"
posted by azarbayejani at 5:21 PM on June 23, 2014


> A story in the Financial Times had come out explaining that Yo had drawn a $1.2 million investment.

This is the tech-bubble equivalent of that episode of the Simpsons where Martin runs onto the floor of a stock exchange yelling "Soy! Soy! Soy!"
posted by The Card Cheat at 5:28 PM on June 23, 2014 [2 favorites]


What kind of personal information is required for registration? Aren't these types of services usually valuable for their subscriber base? Maybe the developer was able to convince the investor(s) that a certain type of person would be most likely to download and use the app, and that particular market segment would be particularly interesting to [company/industry]?
posted by stinkfoot at 5:33 PM on June 23, 2014


"Wouldn't it be cool if you could Yo someone with a picture?"...

What would really be cool is if you could customize the Yo with an individualized message, to provide some context. Not long - say, no more than 140 characters or so.
posted by dmd at 5:39 PM on June 23, 2014 [2 favorites]


It's the future. We only need two characters to communicate now.

Yo
No
Oh

And so on.
posted by sockermom at 5:44 PM on June 23, 2014 [1 favorite]


It's the future. We only need two characters to communicate now.

Wh
posted by Hamusutaa at 6:02 PM on June 23, 2014 [9 favorites]


Even Lassie the dog communicates better than this.
If there's an app that people can use to conveniently send me a collie that'd be great.
posted by Wolfdog at 6:02 PM on June 23, 2014 [4 favorites]


at least it creates a concept of "yogrammers" to help clarify our derision: it will mean people who predominantly devote their efforts to creating get-rick-quick fart apps or fart-like apps for phones

Does Rick really like farts?

Hey!! Someone farted! BETTER GET RICK! He's gonna love this...
posted by 3FLryan at 6:08 PM on June 23, 2014 [4 favorites]


> In September 2010, ISP Timico UK pitted a few homing pigeons against a rural broadband connection to see which was faster. ...

You might enjoy the Wikipedia article on Sneakernet, which references one of my favorite ever lines by a computer scientist:
Never underestimate the bandwidth of a station wagon full of tapes hurtling down the highway.

— Andrew Tanenbaum, 1989
posted by benito.strauss at 6:13 PM on June 23, 2014 [5 favorites]


If you pay $9.99 to go Yo Pro, you can edit your Yos before you send them. Yo, what's the editor? Oh, Word.
posted by feloniousmonk at 6:19 PM on June 23, 2014 [2 favorites]


This is like the pet rock of apps.

You should make that. You have to pet it so many times an hour or it starts to get mossy. If you leave it alone for too long it starts to cry. There will be muffled crying coming from your pocket. If you give it plenty of attention it makes soothing noises. You cannot turn it off or disable it.

Already been done.
posted by localroger at 6:21 PM on June 23, 2014 [1 favorite]


$1.2 million? With an M? These days I expect a B for shit like this.
posted by rlk at 6:36 PM on June 23, 2014


If there's an app that people can use to conveniently send me a collie that'd be great.

That can be done, but it wouldn't be your collie, you would be sharing it with a total stranger and the collie would be a hungover contractor who works for dog treat crumbs.
posted by bradbane at 6:38 PM on June 23, 2014 [1 favorite]


surprised I'm the first to say this - or have they all been deleted?
Yolo
posted by oneswellfoop at 6:50 PM on June 23, 2014 [1 favorite]


This is like the pet rock of apps.

You should make that. You have to pet it so many times an hour or it starts to get mossy. If you leave it alone for too long it starts to cry. There will be muffled crying coming from your pocket. If you give it plenty of attention it makes soothing noises. You cannot turn it off or disable it.



Even better: the app generates an image of a rock with a single human eye embedded in it. The eye is constantly tearing up, and occasionally emits a pale, vaguely pussy substance. It looks mildly infected. At times, faint whimpering can be heard. Nothing the user says or does will affect this situation in any way.
posted by TheWhiteSkull at 7:05 PM on June 23, 2014 [2 favorites]


If you think Yo is a stupid app, then you're missing the point. It's basically just the demo for an entirely new platform. Think about it: once they release the API, it will open the door to all kinds of single-message apps. If you want to build an app that only sends the message "I'm at the combination Pizza Hut and Taco Bell" it's suddenly super easy using the Yo framework. Under an open source license, OEMs can build low cost devices that are purpose-built to send a single message. It's not a stupid app, it's the ecosystem, stupid. Yo.
posted by snofoam at 7:10 PM on June 23, 2014 [5 favorites]


*yo-dels*
posted by jonmc at 7:16 PM on June 23, 2014


It's not a stupid app, it's the ecosystem, stupid. Yo.

Yo. My immediate ecosystem consists of a flock of earnest chickens who lay eggs and excrete a ton of shit; and who wander my yard, eating bugs and worms and excreting more shit; and I then put their shit into my compost bin along with scraps of food or vegetable waste that I myself have not eaten; and then that compost goes into the beds that grow my tomatoes and peppers and squashes; which then attract more bugs and worms that my chickens eat, whilst shitting, and then they lay me more eggs; which I eat with my incredible tomato/pepper/squash harvest.

Don't co-opt my notion of "ecosystem," yo.
posted by mudpuppie at 7:18 PM on June 23, 2014 [7 favorites]


Yo, your food web sounds pretty dope, but can you really not see how Yo changes everything? Take the easy button from STAPLES, for example: pretty sweet, but it didn't actually do anything. Now, imagine the easy button...POWERED BY YO! I bet your head just exploded and now there are a bunch of little gears and springs all over.
posted by snofoam at 7:26 PM on June 23, 2014 [1 favorite]


Even better: the app generates an image of a rock with a single human eye embedded in it. The eye is constantly tearing up, and occasionally emits a pale, vaguely pussy substance. It looks mildly infected. At times, faint whimpering can be heard. Nothing the user says or does will affect this situation in any way.

WELCOME TO NIGHTAPP
posted by His thoughts were red thoughts at 7:29 PM on June 23, 2014 [10 favorites]


Arbel created the app at Hogeg’s request—he wanted to be able to page his assistant without having to call or text her.
The real victim of this whole venture is this asshole's poor secretary.
posted by maryr at 7:57 PM on June 23, 2014 [10 favorites]


Isn't this just favorites/likes as direct messaging? Sure, it's stupid, just not all that innovatively stupid.
posted by XMLicious at 7:58 PM on June 23, 2014


I propose the creation of an app that would send the message "I just lost the game" to the user's entire contact list. Those without the app installed would receive a follow up message with the rules of the game and a download link.
posted by FissionChips at 8:08 PM on June 23, 2014 [1 favorite]


Nu?
posted by rodii at 8:12 PM on June 23, 2014 [1 favorite]


I'm not ready for the future.
posted by A Bad Catholic at 8:28 PM on June 23, 2014


I just came here to say 'Yo'.


Yo.
posted by mazola at 9:17 PM on June 23, 2014


So people are that lazily dumb? I am going to make a app that is just "Damn!"
That's got to be good for at least $800K.

If anybody ever wonders why old people are cranky, and seem to hate young people...look no farther.
posted by QueerAngel28 at 9:29 PM on June 23, 2014 [1 favorite]


> I mean, it was released on April 1st and all...

It certainly appears like Arbel made this as a joke, submitted it to the App store as a joke, and only since picking up coverage/users has he starting taking it seriously.

He seems to be tongue-in-cheek about this whole thing. Case in point: "According to Arbel, once you start using Yo 'the way it affects your life is profound.' He noted that many of the reviews of Yo in the app store say things like 'Yo changed my life.'"

No one is saying that about Yo with a straight face. Not even its creator.

> Yos are used as verifications ("Yo, I made it home from school"), acts of thoughtfulness ("Yo, I'm thinking of you") and as alerts ("Yo, I need your help").

But how are you supposed to know which? Even Lassie the dog communicates better than this.


The above linked article talks about something called “context-based communications” in reference to Yo, which, in and of itself, is an interesting idea. "Arbel says that 'you usually understand what the Yo means based on who you get it from and when you get it.'" Which, actually, is totally true.
posted by toofuture at 9:33 PM on June 23, 2014 [2 favorites]


Also, the App Store reviews are quite hilarious.
posted by toofuture at 9:50 PM on June 23, 2014


dmd: What would really be cool is if you could customize the Yo with an individualized message, to provide some context. Not long - say, no more than 140 characters or so.

Pfft.
I started coding it, and eight hours later I was finished! I sent it to a group on Whatsapp and the guys loved it, except one guy who said it was the stupidest app ever. But it’s a whole new way for communication! A hundred and forty characters is way too much these days… It’s lightweight, easy, you don’t have to open a message—the notification itself is everything you need.”
This guy is clearly a genius. And the monetization options? Spot on.
when your friend’s plane lands, Delta might want to Yo you. The Cheesecake Factory might want to Yo you when your table’s ready. He went on: “The New Yorker—do you have a Web site? You could send notifications to your readers.”
It'd be great! All you have to do is give every company your "Yo Handle" and they can "Yo" you when your thing is ready.

Or they could just fucking text you. You know, on any phone that accepts text messages, because no one really wants to install another app to send one stupid message, because if you want to do anything besides have a stupid yo-yo game back and forth, you'll have to open another app, or call the person back. Oh no, let's not actually expand an existing chat app with a simple feature to insta-message someone with obnoxiously large text. We need a new thing.

(Now, if you could add a second option of "Yo?" when someone doesn't respond to your initial "Yo," to inquire if they got that first "Yo," that shit would be golden).
posted by filthy light thief at 9:52 PM on June 23, 2014


And if this isn't a tech bubble, we might be returning to Peak Messaging App, akin to the late 1990s, when you had to figure out if your friends were on AIM, ICQ, IRC or something else.

"Sorry man, I'm not down with WhatsApp. I'm a Yo guy. You gotta holla at me there."
"Nah, wanna Skype?"
posted by filthy light thief at 9:53 PM on June 23, 2014


Maybe the developer was able to convince the investor(s) that a certain type of person would be most likely to download and use the app, and that particular market segment would be particularly interesting to [company/industry]?

Total idiots with expensive phones?
posted by Dr Dracator at 10:05 PM on June 23, 2014 [1 favorite]


get-rick-quick fart apps

rick
rick
rick
pull my finger, rick
posted by zeptoweasel at 10:32 PM on June 23, 2014 [1 favorite]


This is a pretty cool idea, but it needs to be scaled up a level. What Yo needs is a single-purpose platform to host it, where consumers can also interface with other pre-installed Yo-themed applications.

I hereby propose the Yomondo. To be sold only in single-purpose Yo stores, where every other word in human language is banned, the Yomondo will be the ultimate single-purpose console experience. Not only will users be able to Yo each other, they'll be able to order meals from Yo! Sushi (but only Yo! Sushi), book hotel rooms with Yotel (but only Yotel), and play cutting edge games like, "Yo Momma, Can I Mow the Lawn?" The piece de la resistance will be the pre-installed Netscape Navigator Internet browser, with which users can visit an archived version of the Netscape site as it existed in June 1997. It'll replace the iPhone within 2 years.

Now, where's my red Ferrari Enzo?
posted by Sonny Jim at 1:42 AM on June 24, 2014


I kind of like this. There's a theory about the origin of human language that goes along the lines of: small bands of apes used to groom each other to bond socially, but once groups get too large, grooming for social bonding doesn't scale well, because you can only groom one person at a time. So if you can do "vocal grooming", you can groom a bunch of people much more quickly and stay bonded to everyone. Basically our "hi" exchanges as we pass people, or "how are you?" function as a sort of grooming behaviour.

Yo is kind of the next-level solution to this. Once you are no longer often in physical proximity with most of your social group, you can't do these pointless vocalisations to bond, and we have kind of come to feel as though media like texting, emails, etc have to convey some sort of meaning. So YO fills the gap where you are basically just reiterating a bond with someone, and because it's so easy, you could "keep up" with a huge number of people by YOing them regularly.

Not that it's creating any real sort of connection, but it makes you FEEL like you have a connection, which is probably enough for a lot of people a lot of the time.
posted by lollusc at 1:55 AM on June 24, 2014 [1 favorite]


Even Lassie the dog communicates better than this.

Woof?
posted by lassie at 2:18 AM on June 24, 2014


Great minds Yo, Sonny Jim.
posted by snofoam at 2:23 AM on June 24, 2014 [1 favorite]


They should add another message, so you can do binary coding, and then implement SMTP on top of that.

No need, you can do binary coding just by the timing of the Yos. One possibility, per the Captain Pike reference above, would be one Yo vs. two in rapid succession.
Yo Yo     Yo      Yo Yo     Yo       Yo      Yo Yo    Yo Yo     Yo

Yo Yo     Yo       Yo      Yo Yo     Yo       Yo       Yo       Yo

posted by DevilsAdvocate at 4:51 AM on June 24, 2014 [1 favorite]


Or something which sends no message at all, only the name of the sender.

Timmay.
posted by Wild_Eep at 5:26 AM on June 24, 2014


Ni!
posted by Foosnark at 5:37 AM on June 24, 2014 [1 favorite]


I like this, it's a skip-to-the-end for the terrible trend of increased abbreviation. I can Yo to Stephen Fry, and he will Yo me back, finally we achieve equality of thought and expression by reducing communication to a single word. Bring on the backlash, bring back nuance and detail, let everyone realise that shorter is not usually better except for the kind of drivel that's better left unwritten in the first place.
posted by dickasso at 5:44 AM on June 24, 2014


People who give each other thumbs-up should have their thumbs cut off! And be buried with a stake of holly in their heart!
posted by XMLicious at 5:48 AM on June 24, 2014


Building on DevilsAdvocate's idea, perhaps a series of long and short intervals could be used to create patterns, patterns which could mean anything, like letters.

Then users could YOLO to each other using Yo.
posted by bonehead at 6:12 AM on June 24, 2014


Yo
No
Oh


Keep that up & you'll start attracting the Judoon.
posted by scalefree at 6:16 AM on June 24, 2014 [3 favorites]


Um. Uh... Er. Ah. Ha!
posted by rouftop at 7:00 AM on June 24, 2014


Use app. Get punched in the face. What have I done?

Yo. KO. Oh no!
posted by maryr at 7:37 AM on June 24, 2014 [3 favorites]


This would be awesome if the app was developed by Samsung, was called Annyong and was ignored by everyone except Arrested Development fans.
posted by snofoam at 9:57 AM on June 24, 2014 [3 favorites]


I don't have a smartphone so most of this 'app' business just kind of whizzes by.

But this, seriously, is the stupidest fucking app I have ever heard of, and there are a lot of contenders in the field.

Agreed that the $1.2MM was spent not for the app, but to gain access to (how many now?) utter idiots with smartphones who will buy anything if it's called an app.

The investment isn't in the app; the investment is a marketing spend.
posted by feckless fecal fear mongering at 10:16 AM on June 24, 2014


$1.2 million in venture funding with no actual plan for how it's going to make money because some guy wanted to be able to ping his assistant without actually typing two letters into a text message. Dear lord.

That's the whole point. It's naive to actually think these ideas are funded on merit or profitability. The ideas that get funded are precisely those ideas that most appeal to or flatter the ego of the narrow group of billionaires and lackeys who decide venture capital funding for Silicon Valley startups.
posted by jonp72 at 12:49 PM on June 24, 2014


Yo yo yo
yo yo
yo yo yo
yo yo

yo yo
yo yo yo
yo
yo yo

Yo yo
yo yo yo
yo yo
yo yo yo
posted by Wolfdog at 1:03 PM on June 24, 2014


The eye is constantly tearing up, and occasionally emits a pale, vaguely pussy substance.

Hooo-kay that took a few seconds for me to parse. :D
posted by Celsius1414 at 1:22 PM on June 24, 2014 [4 favorites]


> I don't have a smartphone so most of this 'app' business just kind of whizzes by.

But this, seriously, is the stupidest fucking app I have ever heard of, and there are a lot of contenders in the field.


It seems like your first sentence suggests we shouldn't pay attention to your second.

Agreed that the $1.2MM was spent not for the app, but to gain access to (how many now?) utter idiots with smartphones who will buy anything if it's called an app.

Except that Yo is totally free. No one who downloaded Yo paid anything. On top of that, one need not divulge any personal information (cell phone number, email address, facebook account, real name, etc.) in order to use it. All you have to do is make up a (dumb) username.

I understand the sentiment behind "if you are not paying for it, you're not the customer; you're the product being sold," and I wholeheartedly agree, but to say that this is somehow uniquely applicable to Yo is just wrong.
posted by toofuture at 2:26 PM on June 24, 2014 [1 favorite]


Devil's Advocate, I remember those days of programming in Yossembly. Then we got See, then See!! came along with better memory management and out of nowhere we saw See# and Jahbro go to war against each other. After that programming wasn't fun anymore.
posted by Annika Cicada at 9:05 PM on June 24, 2014 [1 favorite]


The first thing I think of is Walter White grumbling "Christ. Pick up your Goddamn phone, Jessie."
posted by Uther Bentrazor at 8:35 AM on June 25, 2014


Yo, stop saying yo, yo.

...ya bunch of yo-yos.
posted by ostranenie at 7:12 PM on June 25, 2014


I see your Yo and raise you one WUPHF.
posted by ostranenie at 7:16 PM on June 25, 2014




« Older "Gotta keep the chickens fed,"   |   That driver's an idiot Newer »


This thread has been archived and is closed to new comments



Post