Reactions to my post on cancelling the Replit subscription
A few days ago I blogged on why I cancelled my paid plan to Replit.
It was a short personal note to record my decision as I often do to document my experiences with tools and products, possibly of interest to the few dozen regulars per day who read my blog.
A day on the home page of Hacker News, over 170 votes, almost 150 comments, and nearly 20,000 views later, it became clear I underestimated the impact of the post. I should have expected mixing parting ways with a product by a red hot startup like Replit, and a red hot technology like AI, could generate some attention.
The discussion in the comments on Hacker News is pretty interesting and I can't do more than reply to a few. But I'd like to address a couple of issues raised in the comments.
Some readers wondered whether I feel entitled to great products at little or no cost, thus making it difficult for companies to survive and innovate. I'd actually be happy to pay for Replit at the new higher price. But my shift to Lisp, and the diverging direction of Replit's evolution, widen a gap between cost and benefits that reduces the value of Replit to me, possibly even at the old lower price.
Others pointed out I'm a niche user while Replit caters to an audience of mainstream developers with different needs. This is true. Replit's features make it a great value for those users such as web developers. For example, deploying a web app by just listening to a port is beyond magical. But this is not what I need.
Replit cofounder Faris Masad also read my post and invited me to a video call. He gave me the opportunity — thanks! — to elaborate on the issues raised in the post and share my feedback on what Replit is missing for Lisp. Faris listened carefully, as he said improving Lisp support can improve the experience also with other languages.
This conversation and the other feedback convinced me to follow more closely the evolution of Replit and reevaluate my decision.