Some things are sacred. Some things should only be touched by the meaty, all-knowing fingers of the men who know them best. Some things are just so pure and sacred and special that they’re worth getting all worked up over.
Planet of the Apps, Apple’s extremely promising new reality show about apps, is a great example of this. I mean, sure, no one seems able to come up with a coherent description of why the show exists, but it could be fun, and let me tell you why: We know that the show is a reality program about app makers, and apps are the building blocks of the tech industry, and the tech industry is the greatest goddamn gift men have ever given the world.
But now, as other fine minds in tech blogging point out, the people in charge have gone and ruined it by casting Jessica Alba as a mentor to app developers. You know, Jessica Alba? That lady you might recognize from the posters hanging on your dorm room wall in 2005?
Come back, Steve. Things are bad here now.
Don’t get me wrong, I have nothing against women in technology, and let me throw out some alternative casting choices to prove it: Whitney Wolfe, Evan Spiegel, Anne Wojcicki, Kevin Systrom, Julia Hartz, Dennis Crowley, Emily Weissor, or Pavel Durov.
Jessica’s a successful startup founder, sure, and she’s become a star, which is no small feat either. But can she code? Does Jessica speak the language of The App Economy?
It’s a damn shame that Apple is stocking its good-sounding reality show about app development with famous actors, like Jessica, who have experience with startups. If you ask me, the company should have convinced Evan Spiegel—he’s probably grown out of those emails by now—or Dennis Crowley, whose startups are going great—to do it. They’re the kinds of people my other Valley friends and I would watch. By people, I mean men working in the technology industry.
Apps are a serious business, and there’s no better way to pay homage to them than to make a scripted reality show about how they’re made. Next time, leave Jessica out of it. She’s got enough to worry about, anyway—having kids and being hot at the same time seems hard enough.