Researcher at the University of Liverpool, Founder/Director at Farset Labs
Ordered Groceries (Tesco Online),
Ordered Case of Wine (Virgin Wines),
Planned PhD and Literature Review writing (StackExchange)
Read more papers (Mendeley)
Managed some Investments (Zopa)
As I was walking back from our kitchen in the office, I realised that that ‘lift coffee cup, walk to kitchen, make coffee cup, return to desk’ was the most inefficient part of my working day; I can even justify writing this post as vaguely productive as I’m waiting for a download to complete…
Fact is that with services like these, and others like NiftyNosh, we can accomplish a lot of the day-to-day necessities remotely, for a small surcharge (although often the efficiencies of scale allow these services to be significantly cheaper than their ‘High St’ equivalents.
In the midst of the ‘Occupy X’ movement of today, it is important to realise some of the pros and cons of this ‘Brave New World’;
Tesco is a grocery giant, (in)famous for using their scale to push out other local providers, but Tesco deliver to my doorstep and I don’t get the opportunity to ‘impulse buy’.
NiftyNosh acts as a broker for local takeaway’s and delivery firms to get your tasty tasty snack or beverage delivered by a ‘local’, and they make their money in partnership agreements.
Zopa is a distributed lending system (think BitTorrent with Money) and while being a far from perfect system (they’re of course skimming charges off the top of every transaction), I am getting higher ROI than I would be if my money was sitting in the bank, and I know that my money is being lent to ‘people’.
StackExchange provides me with domain specific information from non-geographically dependent people, giving me advice that one would have to travel the world to find otherwise. I still value the advice of those in my local research cluster/university/city etc, but having very rare and specific questions answered by some of the luminaries of the field is very useful and satisfying.
In short, I for one welcome our internet-based overlords; be there or be square.