New Book: “The Problems With All the Good Things”

Published on July 11, 2023 (↻ May 31, 2024), filed under (RSS feed for all categories).

Tip: EPUB and PDF, with updates, at Gumroad.

I’m German, and Germans are avid, competitive complainers. We can tell you exactly why yesterday’s win of your favorite club was undeserved, why today’s beautiful weather sucks, and why the German and any other government’s successes are irrelevant given what they continuously keep f’ing up. A complaint-free world? Please.

But it’s probably not national negativity that would explain why there’s so much to complain, about everything.

It’s also not clear whether one can actually complain about everything. Are there problems with everything? Even with the good things?

This is what I’ve investigated, putting AI to the test and documenting the findings in a little book: The Problems With All the Good Things. As it turns out, there’s both less and more going on when it comes to complaining, and finding problems everywhere. Enjoy.

Format and price Ebook (EPUB and PDF), $4.99
Kindle ebook (free app for Android and iOS), $4.99
Preview Select chapters (PDF, 200 KB)
Length 73 pages (PDF)
Sellers Amazon
Apple Books
Google Play Books
Leanpub (higher price set by Leanpub, but including donation)
Latest version 1.3.5 (bought the book, but reading an old version? contact me, maybe I can help)


The cover of “The Problems With All the Good Things.”

Here are two observations that you’ve likely made in your life:

One, you’ve noticed how easy it is to find fault. If you haven’t found fault yourself, then you know others who find this wrong and that wrong and that other thing wrong as well.

Two, you’ve learned about things generally deemed desirable and good, things not connected with fault, whether these are states of being or possessions or activities.

Now, if you put the first observation to the test (looking for fault), would the second still hold (that there are things without fault)?

Would there be nothing to complain about; would there be nothing wrong with all those things desirable and good?

This question is what this little book is exploring, by interviewing OpenAI’s ChatGPT about the problems, with many good things.

The outline:

  • Acknowledgments
  • Introduction
  • The Problems With What You Are
  • The Problems With What You Do
  • Afterword
  • Feedback
  • About the Author
  • About The Problems With All the Good Things

❧ I’m grateful to Vadim Gershteyn, who edited the book, as well as Yaroslav Kiyenko, who advised on questions related to AI-generated content. Thank you.

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About Me

Jens Oliver Meiert, on September 30, 2021.

I’m Jens (long: Jens Oliver Meiert), and I’m a frontend engineering leader and tech author/publisher. I’ve worked as a technical lead for companies like Google and as an engineering manager for companies like Miro, I’m close to W3C and WHATWG, and I write and review books for O’Reilly and Frontend Dogma.

I love trying things, not only in web development (and engineering management), but also in other areas like philosophy. Here on I share some of my views and experiences.

If you want to do me a favor, interpret charitably (I speak three languages, and they can collide), yet be critical and give feedback for me to learn and improve. Thank you!