Sunday, July 25, 2010

Not another friggin choice!

Disclaimer : As usual, I'm 2 years behind on "what's-up-in-gizmo-land". But what the heck... my emotion is very current.

So I read about these uber smart chaps who want to save the planet (whether they believe in climate change is beside the point), and they've come up with a way to help.

So from now on, instead of having a million receipts in ur hand, you can have them all emailed to you.

This means for some of you, you'll have additional labels and filters in your gmail and everything will be neatly organized. And you can keep track of every starbucks latte you've had. Some of you whack-jobs will then write this tiny program to extract all the starbucks lattes you've had and plot it on a graph to track caffeine intake and probably correlate it with your work productivity/sleep deprivation/food binges/ paranoia. Note: Please factor in all the time it took for you to write this crazy program, instead of you-know, doing real work. And hey, while it doesn't sound like it, trust me, I salute you.

This is what it means for me.
Another choice ?

This means a series of answers at the checking counter.

Cash or card.
Credit or debit.
Swipe a million times coz the credit card machine really likes being polite and certain.
Do you want it in your hand, in a bag, giftwrapped ?
Do u want a paper bag or a plastic bag.
Do you want the receipt in ur hand or in the bag.


would you like the receipt emailed to you ?

Please give me your email address.
Is it right ?

< I don't even want to go into whether there's going to be an additional verification step; perhaps you have to login, click a link, enter a captcha, perhaps set another online shopping account, with secret password questions and hints. I'm sure they'll tell you that if you created an account, you can set the choices such that the store will never have to ask you what your preferred billing method. Pretty soon, there will also be another one of those iphone apps for it. Maybe you just have to wave the iphone across their computer and it'll figure it out >

You know what I don't care. Just do what pleases you.

Coz I am now going to end up with a million receipts in my hand, bag and in my email address that I going to completely lose track of what I'm spending. This is how financial collapses happen. By giving people completely unwarranted freebies.
Luxury of choice, by definition, shouldnt be this affordable.

Congress! Are you listening! I know you love freedom of everything (including the right to bear firearms ???), but could you please curb some of my freedom to make choices ? Can u mandate that every single store, across the board, does exactly one thing ?



Since you love making databases, can u at least let me register my choice once and have all these guys who're so desperate to keep me happy, know what I want, instead of asking me every single time ?

Coz what I really want, is not to make these many decisions.

All I want is my latte.
And the most I'm willing to do... in order for you... to keep me happy... is to tell u I want it non-fat with caramel sauce. That's it.

If that's good enough for me, it had better be good enough for you.


Arvind Suresh said...

After all, capitalism does pride itself on giving the consumer the choice :P

Apart from the question though, the idea itself is pretty good. We dont have to go hunting around the house for receipts to return stuff then!

What would be really cool is to use a fingerprint/retinal scan system to complete the transaction without any questions!

Arvind Suresh said...
This comment has been removed by the author.