Retail, reviews, Hifi and schools

The other morning there was a big Takealot and Superbalist promotion on the radio. They had sales on their websites based on user ratings, reviews, and wishlists. This was interesting and curious to me.

Then I learned that the concept is not so new. Amazon already has physical “4 star stores” in the USA which are packed with goods rated 4 stars or more.

Hifi of course is a market dominated by reviews. Stars and ratings offer a convenient way to compare one product to another, but are they really what you should be measuring and what you should decide your purchase on? What have you bought lately because of user reviews? What about based on some other measurement such as decibels or resolution? What about subjectively trying the product out before you buy? Personally I have always bought something without even trying it. Maybe that should change with something so subjective as art appreciation (listening to music).

How about another market – choosing a school for your child. Should this be done based on a simple rating/5 star model? To me, the fact that individual personalities are so different means that more care needs to be taken to find a place. But of course socio economic, geographic and other factors come into play. Can you access the school? Can you afford it? Can your child get in with their grades?

I think that the way Amazon and online mass retail has developed means we are perhaps more and more likely to look for the simple star rating, even if this is not a true indicator of what we need.

Microsoft

I just downloaded edge browser for my phone.

I am also moving all my mail and calendar stuff to outlook.

Excel Word and PowerPoint are all work mainstays on my computer.

I am going to Microsoft because I pay for it. The idea is that I will be the customer rather than the product.

Hardware is probably next. Liking the look of windows surface and laptops.

A day off from dopamine consumption

When your phone is glued to your hand come rain or shine – there is a problem.

The constant refreshing of a few apps over and over and over – like a mad man expecting different results but doing the exact same thing. And it’s all for consumption – for keeping up to date and for dopamine. Not for creation.

This blog is for creation though. These words were not here before i put them on the page. No newsfeed. No reading. Just my own words.

Take that, social media. Because sometimes you really suck.

 

Humbled through Twitter blocks

I am learning how to use Twitter. An intimidating place sometimes, Twitter for me is a roller-coaster ride of fumbling around. Like a little kid with training wheels on a bicycle I am wobbling through it.

I get stuck wondering what I actually want to say. In real life I am not particularly outspoken which is something I want to change, but what sort of stuff should I start to be outspoken about? As you can see Twitter raises lots of questions for me to grapple with.

Finding people to follow has been relatively easy. It is creating content that is the hard part for me. I get desperate to put stuff out there into the Twitter-sphere, even if I have nothing coherent to say, and it has bad results!

Today I re-tweeted one of my favourite people on Twitter and the result was a block.

To explain, it was a very heavy tweet to re-tweet (Mau-era China resulting in deaths for millions of Chinese) and I added an extremely vague and poorly written comment, tenuously linking the story to Cape Town’s current drought. I kept the guy’s Twitter handle in there, linking him with my post. It was extremely clumsy and didn’t go down well!

 

I am devastated and hope he reconsiders. I have written to him to ask for forgiveness. He is one of my favourite people to follow….dammit! Twitter is not coming naturally but I see there may be huge benefits to persevering.