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When Facebook bought WhatsApp for $19 billion Facebook WhatsApp, SkyDrive OneDrive, Yahoo Siri, Apple Tesla [Tech News Digest] Facebook WhatsApp, SkyDrive OneDrive, Yahoo Siri, Apple Tesla [Tech News Digest] Facebook buys WhatsApp, FCC responds to the loss of 'net neutrality', SkyDrive becomes OneDrive, Yahoo wants its own Siri, Apple is interested in Tesla, and Samsung mocks Apple in its latest set of television commercials. Read More it set us wondering how things may have been different if certain websites or apps had been either created by other people or bought before they matured. We hoped this would be worthy of a serious and invigorating discussion amongst the MakeUseOf readership. We were wrong.

Google, And Not Much Else

We asked you, What Website Or App Do You Wish You’d Created? The response to this question was extremely disappointing. Not only was the number of replies low, but the quality was also lacking. Just a few of you nailed it, answering the question actually posed, but the rest of you completely failed to understand what was being asked.

We wanted to find out what existing website or app you wish you had created. The “existing” part of the question being the crucial element. Instead, several people took the time out to tell us all about an app they want to create themselves from scratch. Which is all very interesting, but not what we were aiming for on this particular occasion.

This means we’re left with little to work with when trying to draw conclusions from the discussion. Two people offered up “Google” as their response to the question, which qualifies it as the default answer and gives it pride of place in the title of this article. Neither offered any kind of explanation as to why they wish they had created Google. Which is a shame. But then I also wish I had created Google, so I cannot argue with the logic.

The only other serious responses offered Steam and Evernote as websites or apps the commenters wish they had created. And both are indeed fantastic properties that anyone in their right mind would be proud to own.


Of the people who completely misunderstood the question, one wants to create an app that helps farmers determine what the weather is like. I think, but please do correct me if I’m wrong on this, that something similar already exists, with multiple weather apps Predict The Future (Of Weather) With These 7 Awesome Weather Apps [Android] Predict The Future (Of Weather) With These 7 Awesome Weather Apps [Android] Correctly predicting the weather is about as easy as eating a handful of screws, yet we keep attempting it day after day. Sometimes we get it right; most times we don’t. However, weather information is... Read More and weather websites What Are The Best Weather Websites? What Are The Best Weather Websites? I'm rather obsessed with the weather. It's not my fault, it's just that I was born and brought up in the U.K., and all British people are obsessed with the weather. I think it's because... Read More on offer. Or you could, if you prefer, suggest the farmers stick their heads out of the window and see what the weather is like for themselves.

Comment Of The Week

We received several good comments, including those from Tom W and Khashayar Sahebkar. Comment Of The Week goes to Kevin, who wins a T-shirt for this comment What Website or App Do You Wish You'd Created? [We Ask You] What Website or App Do You Wish You'd Created? [We Ask You] Every single one of these websites and apps was created by people like you and I. And we suck for not getting there first. Read More :

Steam. I love having all those games at the tap of a mouse. If I’d invented it, I would have included emulators for all the old consoles and pc’s and complete libraries of games for them all (including 100% controller support and classic 2 player games would only require one purchase and both players could play on the same pc).

We chose this comment because it was the most interesting response to the question. And, crucially, it actually answered the question posed and not some other imaginary question that people think deserved answering but which was never actually asked.

Steam has revolutionized the PC games market, providing a solid and dependable online repository of digital titles PC gamers can purchase quickly and easily. So we don’t blame the commenter for wishing he had created it. His plan to include emulators may have caused legal issues though.

We Ask You is a weekly column in which you have your say about a particular subject. We ask you a question each week, with the results compiled and compressed into a follow-up article the following week. This column is nothing without your input, all of which is valued.

  1. Aj V
    March 5, 2014 at 7:10 pm

    I would say Microsoft due to Windows (regardless of the particular OS version) as it has transformed the user computing experience drastically. The advent of the modern computer software and technology can be significantly attributed to it. Considering that Windows is the dominant OS in the world all over, and its owner Bill Gates one of the richest men on the face of Earth, its surprising someone didn't give this answer before.

    • Dave P
      March 6, 2014 at 6:42 pm

      I'd like Bill Gates' money, oh yes I would.

  2. Aibek E
    March 5, 2014 at 2:22 pm

    hey Dave,

    i somehow missed the previous post so i will just reply here. If I am to choose one I would probably go with WhatsApp as well. It's a world changing product that made entire world overall more connected and productive. The other three in my list are Youtube, Gmail and Google search.


    • Dave P
      March 6, 2014 at 6:43 pm

      Would you have said WhatsApp before the Facebook acquisition though?!

      As all of your other three are owned by Google I'll take that as your answer. And start calling you Sergey :)

    • Aibek E
      March 6, 2014 at 8:03 pm

      Yup, I would! i have actually mentioned this in another "we ask you" post a couple of weeks before the acquisition)

  3. Francois
    March 5, 2014 at 8:45 am

    The main takeaway for me is that MUO is capable of writing a very long post about nothing, deride their readers in a slightly insulting manner while doing so. The smarter thing would have been to rephrase your question or just acknowledge that you got it wrong and moved on. Now dwell on that and write 500 words for your next article.

    • Dave P
      March 6, 2014 at 6:41 pm

      Thank you for the compliment. I'm proud of my ability to turn a handful of comments that missed the point entirely into an article 600 words in length.

      I wasn't insulting or deriding the readers, it was all very lighthearted and in the nature of this column. Read some older entries and you'll see it's a fair exchange of snark.

  4. Tom W
    March 5, 2014 at 3:02 am

    I think the main thing here is that the question was wrong for the audience. The MUO audience is intelligent enough to not dwell on what could have been, instead focussing on what can be. Asking what property we wished we owned is rather passive, but asking what our favourite property is puts a whole different spin on it.

    • Dave P
      March 6, 2014 at 6:39 pm

      It wasn't really about what could have been. We were trying to ascertain what was the most desirable website or app and why an individual would like to own it. Either for the value or for the chance to adapt it to suit their own needs, etc.

      Having said that, point taken :)

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