Why Basecamp is Evil

It's the old wound: they hold your data hostage. Over at basecamp there is an export option, but it doesn't include uploaded files. Which I presume means that links to files will break. I guess the good news is that data hostage taking isn't just for Big Heartless Corp anymore.

In all fairness, I don't think 37signals intended to be evil. It just sort of turned out that way: their tools and data are so tightly coupled that it would be very difficult to extract one from the other. (And one could argue that the tools & data are themselves tightly coupled to the runtime: Ruby on Rails hosted on Amazon EC2.).

I think the idea is that you want to make tools to help your users organize their information, but that doesn't require the tool to make further use of the organization that they have worked so hard to create.

Of course, if I was really smart I'd write a little program that pulled apart the finite state machine that is basecamp - normal recursive wget will not work because of the ajax.

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