MeteorTosh ! What I would do If was Meteor's CEO

Just followed the long “Who is CEO of Meteor ?” thread… and… quite frankly, I found it quite depressing.

It shouldn’t be… In my humble opinion, Meteor IS THE BEST javascript framework out there. No one has come close to the easy of use and completeness of Meteor.

The problem of Meteor is that, with age, it has lost the HYPE WAR.

Hype is a dumb measurement. For one thing to be cool, it does not matter how many people love or support it ! What counts is the growth! The derivative is more important than the module. Then… as people watch the trends… not the actual numbers… choices are made… Sometime the wrong ones.

By loosing the hype war, users also left afraid of continuity. The irony is that Meteor did an outstanding job in keeping compatibility and continuity! I wrote my application when it was Meteor 1.01 and node 0.10 and, with some few modifications, just a few dropped packages, it still works at the latest version today! I still use lay loading and not a single import statement and my application works flawlessly. Which other framework can claim that?

But Meteor is now confusing for new users… it wants to be everything for everybody. Not all packages are reliable. Most tutorials are outdated and new users seem reluctant in coming in to a framework that seems have lost the hype.

If I was Meteor’s CEO I would launch my new Hype! My new new vision to the future!

I would call it " MeteorTosh" !

It would be either a break from the past AND/OR a more focused and lighter version of Meteor.

Not compatible with previous packages, projects, tutorials.

As a jumpstart for previous supporters, maybe a Meteor roseta npm package for running older Meteor projects, but that’s it. Then Meteortosh would be Free to make breaking changes. Projects willing to take advantages of the new Meteortosh functionalities would have to be converted.

Sure I would keep Meteor.js. It would be maintained for years to come. This is software… This is not like replacing an Apple ][ line… Meteor can continue to evolve in parallel.

But I would free myself, technically and Marketing wise, to create the new hype, the next big thing!

Technically it may not be much different from what Meteor already offers today. Although being able to make breaking changes from the past, getting lighter, etc, that could represent a leap change to the platform, Meteor is already an extreme advanced platform.

Marketing wise, however, projecting it as a leaner, cleaner, more focused Javascript Platform, the new MeteorTosh could grab the attention and bring new users rapidly, possibly bringing users to “old” Meteor (more complete?) platform as well.

What you guys think?

Just spit-balling here — I don’t think re-making Meteor is the way forward. As you say:

Meteor IS THE BEST javascript framework out there. No one has come close to the easy of use and completeness of Meteor.

I wonder if it would be helpful to cultivate some social media influencers/podcasters/substack authors to help generate awareness and excitement. Just a thought!

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The meteor CEO should promote Linux GNUGPL because that’s why we are here. Meteor rides on the back of decades of open source development. Therefore it should have openly available hosting that is 100% free for students to deploy their meteor apps on and includes ssh terminal access. When meteor first caused waves, it had this. But it was removed in place of the for profit galaxy.

Time to stop for profit so much and provide a free tier and put a advertising frame around it so it’s not cash negative.

Also as a CEO you should open up a request list where we can +1 and -1 on features coming in and be more communicative of what will be in the next release.

You should also make it clear that things cannot be broken as an ‘update’ an update must not be a downgrade. And there is no space for grabbing CV and resume space by putting some commits in and doing favours for frat buddy / friends. If it’s not better it shouldn’t be added.

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There is a free tier for Meteor Galaxy. It was re-added shortly after Tiny acquired meteor.

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Cool! That one missed me by. No ssh though so kinda useless but still good to see. Why won’t they give terminal access I don’t get it

Meteor is the best “in my humble opinion”. It is good that you share the sameopinio,

BUT… this opinion is NOT shared by the community. It is wrongly seen as old and cumbersome. Slow and old fashioned.

On top of that, although Meteor has made an astonishing work in maintaining backwards compatibility . Tutorials, Literature and StackOverflow questions, etc… are long obsolete. Any new comer will have difficulties in addressing its issues with it.

A new version, with a new name and purpose, using the same technological base, will be seen by the Community as new kid on the Block.

People will be curious to try it. My bet is that people will love it!

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I don’t think most of what the OP mentioned is necessary, for example it doesn’t need to lose compatibility with previous packages/projects.

It just needs to be marketed as a new version in a way that will get people to look at it again with fresh eyes.

Honestly, most people had made their decisions about Meteor before it even had NPM support. They aren’t aware of newer packages that solve most of the old problems.

Although one thing that is true is there’s not a lot of documentation that is up to date. Discover Meteor was big when I first learned Meteor. Something like that, that integrates some of the popular packages and basically uses Meteor “how you would use it with a deployed application” would be great. As tutorials are more barebones, and that’s great for it’s purpose, but to truly give people an idea of how strong Meteor is, they have to be given a picture that shows how everything comes together.

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Honestly, most people had made their decisions about Meteor before it even had NPM support. They aren’t aware of newer packages that solve most of the old problems.

I would argue against that. “Most people” from that time, maybe. But we are in 2022 and there are much more developers in the world than in 2014/2015 and many of them even don’t know Meteor, because it’s not on the “top 10 super hot hyped js frameworks 2022” or “fullstack developer roadmap 2022” lists, posted in various communities (which we all know are in their majority low quality sh*t-posts but they attract a great bunch of people).

I think it does not need to be marketed that much as “new” but marketed as a good choice for begineers, advanced and professional users and needs to be visible to them at that point, when they make a choice of which framework to choose.

Discover Meteor was big when I first learned Meteor

Agree but the problem is, that even if there would be a new version of it with up2date packages, it would require the same level of maintenance. It’s a very big effort.

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That’s kind of what I mean.

Of anyone who I know who heard of/tried Meteor, it was way back then, when it was “trending” even though it lacked some of the basic functionality (like NPM). They wrote it off at that point, said it can’t use NPM, doesn’t scale, only plays nice with Blaze/Mongo, and never looked back.

Nowadays, I hadn’t ever ran in to someone who actually tried Meteor outside of that time period. They either never heard of it, or tried it in the early/trending days and don’t really know where it stands today.

Agree but the problem is, that even if there would be a new version of it with up2date packages, it would require the same level of maintenance. It’s a very big effort.

Yep, I’d say that’s possibly the biggest issue with Meteor. As even if developers were looking in to Meteor, they would find so many old articles/documentation/etc that would give the wrong impression.

At this point a version update that is really pushed in terms of giving it a clear name for marketing would be good, as users could make sure they check documentation/articles from this point on, and know they’re looking at old info if they don’t see the new version.

I just Googled “top javascript frameworks”, in incognito mode to make sure it isn’t presenting results based on my browser history. Meteor is featured.

Most of the ones listed aren’t even frameworks for anything except the view layer.

The top link listed under these images is “10 Best JavaScript Frameworks to Use in 2022”. Meteor is featured there as well.

Maybe brand awareness is okay, and PR for Meteor should focus on brand positioning. (I’m a Director of Market Research). Brand awareness == what percentage of javascript developers are aware of Meteor. Brand positioning == what javascript developers say to themselves about what Meteor is useful for, and capable of.

How would we like to position Meteor to javascript developers? It can be helpful to think about these as short bullet points. Here are a few for possible discussion purposes:

  • You already love react/vue/svelte/angular. Meteor is the framework for everything else in your app.
  • The fastest js app creation framework on the planet.
  • The top framework for realtime js data
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I came across Meteor back in 2015 when I was looking for a framework for my startup. I was a pure front end dev at that time and thought I would need a backend dev to make my dreams come true. So I was blown away by Meteor that allowed me to get into full stack dev fast and easily. I could never had built my first mobile app, which was a real-time video chat app, without it. That was pure magic.

Part of it surely was Blaze and the opinionatedness of the platform. At that time I would have be overwhelmed by all the options, React in particular, which I now use daily and love.

I continued using Meteor, especially at hackathons, where it allowed me to create cool stuff quicker than any other team. And even today, it’s still the backbone of my next startup, that’s building a real-world Metaverse. Just recently, my cofounder asked my how on earth I was able to integrate a Telegram-like chat in no time. Well, that was because of the simplicity and reactive features of Meteor.

What I am trying to say with my little “history” here: Meteor always shone as a framework for startups and proof-of-concept development, and it didn’t stop you there, but let you scale even further. For me, the biggest failure the team made was when they tried to chase the corporate world with an overpriced hosting solution. Having worked with large corporates for many years myself, I never understood why they would want to use an opinionated framework in the first place.

In my opinion, Meteor should do a “fresh start”, focus on the myriads of devs that need to get sh*it done quick, and rebrand itself so people know what tutorials are still valid and refer to the new Meteor.

Technically, I would see it as a continuation of the existing framework, as it has so much to offer that I don’t see a real reason for breaking changes. Whether they should promote Blaze again, I don’t know. Maybe they should focus on Vue or Svelte for beginners instead. I have never used them for real projects, though, so I cannot assess how beginner friendly they actually are. React is definitely not.

One thing Meteor should get rid of is the whole fibers thing. And I think that’s already work in progress. It’s not only outdated, but was also one of the things that caused many headaches when I got into the platform. Dropping this would be the only area where I would see a justification for bigger breaking changes.

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I agree with you that Meteor’s problem relies basically on MARKETING it. It is definitely the best framework out there, but it lost the hype horse…

Having that said, it is important that all Meteor packages loose their compatibility to the new MeteorTosh. The new MeteorTosh packages, even is only minor modifications are needed, must be PURPOSELY rewritten in order to b compatible with the new hype.

That change would also be part of the Marketing. Breaking with the (although brilliant) Package package history o Meteor will, on the other hand, be an assurance that all new MeteorTosh packages will work out of the package (sorry for the playing with words)

Quotes like these from @waldgeist can be really important for developing the marketing message:

I was blown away by Meteor that allowed me to get into full stack dev fast and easily. I could never had built my first mobile app, which was a real-time video chat app, without it. That was pure magic.

I continued using Meteor, especially at hackathons, where it allowed me to create cool stuff quicker than any other team.

And even today, it’s still the backbone of my next startup, that’s building a real-world Metaverse.

Just recently, my cofounder asked my how on earth I was able to integrate a Telegram-like chat in no time. Well, that was because of the simplicity and reactive features of Meteor.

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I was a ZERO stack developer when I first met Meteor 1.01 !

I had last programmed 25 years earlier, in “C”, FoxPro and SQL. It was a time before the Internet really catch the world. It was still the beginning of “Machintosh / Windows like” Computers, a great departure from command line DOS only computer. Before Meteor, I had never made a Web Page before in pure HTML (only with DramWeaver). Had never before dealt with noSQL databases.

I choose Meteor to be my return to the development world. I reasoned that the development became a crazy mess. Meteor kinda simplified much of that mess by having one language for both server and client (javascript) and by overlaying us for worrying about data sync (DDP).

I have deployed my first Web app, a Full Stack development, with no support from anyone else but free tutorials and StackOverflow in 3 and a half months! I even sold it to 20 more customers in the following months !!!

It is still working today at Meteor 2.6.1 ! It has a client and Admin apps. The client can be seen with this Hotel customer. (see the Booking Engine for this Hotel in Brazil at www.amazonaspalace.com.br

Which other framework could take a 44 year old guy from zero to full stack developer in 3,5 months?

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Great quotes @juliomac! Here are some of the ones I’d feature if I were writing a focus group report:

I choose Meteor to be my return to the development world. I reasoned that the development became a crazy mess. Meteor kinda simplified much of that mess by having one language for both server and client (javascript)…

I have deployed my first Web app, a Full Stack development, with no support from anyone else but free tutorials and StackOverflow in 3 and a half months!

Which other framework could take a 44 year old guy from zero to full stack developer in 3,5 months?

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Anecdotally speaking, IME it seems to be more of an exposure problem. Many devs simply have not heard of meteor for whatever reason.

Dear @vikr00001, you’ve been able to do quite a summary!

Yet, I don’t think MeteorTosh should be sold on its “easy of use” , “easy to start” premises. @waldgeist even mentioned how Meteor is the framework of choice for Hackatons, proof-of-concept and quick app development. Indeed, its great for that!

Although in my opinion these are Meteor bests qualities, as it should be of any development framework. However, that’s not what developers want to be identified with…

Believe me… I went from being a computer nerd in the 90’s to a Marketing Sales Executive in the next 25 years, managing the same sort of engineers / technicians I was before, just to return a bit now to the developing world. I know their (ours?) minds…

Developers and technicians in general take pride in their technical skills. If you advertise Meteor is easy to use, they will immediately connect it to a Kid’s toy and will make every argument to downplay its powerful features. This will be a barrier for adoption instead…

Just look at what happened to Javascript !!! What the F#$#&& people were thinking in transforming a simple function() into something like =>() ??? Javascript was just too easy for programmer to use… they had to make it more complicate so they could differentiate themself from the rest of the simple human beings.

So… I would sell MeteorTosh ONLY on the basis of how fast, powerful and modern the framework would be (basically the same Meteor we have today). Would never mention and would even hide how easy it is to use. Yet, despite the lack of advertisement, I would make as easy as possible…

MeterTosh, the Meteor framework for professionals.

That would be my great quote…

I agree - Meteor should be the platform you use to make yourself a millionaire, then use something else heavy-duty / custom / expensive to make yourself a billionaire.

Features I would love to see:

  • Mongo optional add-on only
  • reactive Postgres based accounts alternative
  • for mongodb, proper support for transactions
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Opinionated hyper-development frameworks seem to be in the spotlight again with RedwoodJS, founded by Tom Preston-Wener, the founder of GitHub.

In my opinion the only advantage of RedwoodJS compared to Meteor is the serverless capability.

Other than that, Meteor has a much longer history of being a rock-solid framework.

RedwoodJS is being targeted towards start-ups to ship their products quicker than arguably more performant stacks.

This is the niche that I believe Meteor needs to shine in.

Meteor, an opinionated framework empowering start-ups to get products to market quicker, with the history to ensure you can scale your product without framework deprecation concerns.

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