When you book a room at the Hilton or the Hyatt you either have a pleasant conversation with someone in a call centre who you will never hear from again, or you get a polite, well-crafted email in your inbox. Your expectation about the experience is based on the photos from the website and the…

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Any one of a number of giant companies could have been first to market with a bagless vacuum cleaner. They all knew that their cleaners lost suction when dust bags became full. They also knew how their customers wrestled to empty dust bags while being enveloped by the dirt they’d just sucked up out of…

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I have to be honest, as an Airbnb evangelist and user I felt a little disappointed as I watched the company’s relaunch unfold. Of course I wasn’t viewing the whole thing through the eyes of an impartial observer. Anyone who is an early adopter of something that begins on the fringes wants that thing to…

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I arranged to meet one of my Twitter friends for the first time in the little bar at the front of my hotel. He is a designer from London and as luck would have it we were visiting New York at the same time, (something we discovered through our simultaneous posts of Times Square on…

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I will never see the taxi driver who picked me up from JFK again. He doesn’t have to worry that he tried to overcharge me and he doesn’t care if it’s me, or one of a hundred other visitors in the back seat tomorrow. Uber, on the other hand, knows when I last booked a…

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I’m not sure what department stores look like on a Tuesday afternoon in your neighbourhood, but in mine they are like ghost towns. Whole floors full of stock that changes with the seasons waiting to be bought by someone (they don’t know who), who happens to stop by. We all know the stories of the…

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