Fresh groceries from Amazon

November 22nd, 2007

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Amazon has come out with a fresh groceries in the Seattle area.  It’s a pilot program called AmazonFresh where they provide fresh food (meat, dairy, vegetables, fruit, etc) for delivery or pick-up.  Lee & Sachi tried it recently and on their recommendation, I tried it as well. 

First impression: AWESOME!  The whole experience is painless and a little bit better than shopping at a real store.  The list of products is extensive and they will likely have what you want (but maybe not the brand you want).  I found everything I needed, plus a few things that I didn’t need.  I’ll break down the pros and cons to help you out.

    Pros: 

  • Delivery is free (if you purchase certain $$ amounts)
  • Saves time by allowing you to click a few buttons instead of driving to the store
  • Quality of produce is exceptional
  • Can purchase small amounts (1 bulb of garlic, 1 onion, etc)
  • They deliver it within a 1-hour window during the day, or deliver it to your doorstep before you wake up (by 6am)
    Cons: 

  • You have to purchase $25 for free early morning delivery or $50 for free daytime delivery
  • Can’t purchase food for tonight’s dinner, tomorrow is the earliest delivery time.  (Note: you can order up till midnight and still get delivery by 6am)

I ordered food last night and scheduled it for delivery this morning (Thanksgiving day no less).  I only ordered $27, so I got free early morning delivery. Around 4:30am, I woke up from the TV noise (yes, I fell asleep in front of the TV) and checked to see if my delivery had come.  Sure enough, I had 3 plastic crates outside my door.  Each crate had a tamper-proof plastic tab on it.  Inside the crate was a styrofoam cooler with reusable ice-bags.  I will put the crate, cooler and ice-bags outside my door the next time I expect to receive an order, so they can pick it up and reuse it. 

In the 35 degree November morning, the food was never in jeopardy of going bad (being in a cooler with ice).  When I unpacked my groceries, everything was perfect.  The eggs were unblemished and the eggplant had no dents or bruises that all eggplant seem to have.  I don’t know where they get this exceptional produce from, but I think it’s better than grocery stores just because they want to prove to customers that online purchases can be trusted.

I’m definitely a believer and if you live in Seattle, give it a try…. since you’ll be pleasently surprised by what you get and how easy it is to get it. https://fresh.amazon.com

How many Facebook friends do you have???

November 17th, 2007

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Hey everyone…. The laptop got lost for awhile.  Well actually, the blog got pushed aside while my life focused on work.  I’ve been debating keeping/losing the blog, since the Internet is more social communities rather than individual blogs these days.  Everyone is into Facebook or MySpace or some other form of keeping large networks together.  This is where people are migrating to…. but maybe for the wrong reasons. 

Do people want to build the largest group of friends possible?  If so, that’s just like highlighting an entire textbook… where by including everything you end up noticing nothing.  If someone has 500 friends on their list, I doubt they care what 90% of those folks are up to.  Do people want to really keep in touch with what their “so-called” friends are up to?  I’m not sure if folks know why they join social communities…. most probably do it because their friends are in the community and there’s a low cost of entry to join.  But what good really comes from joining such communities? 

The value of a community site is to let others know what you’re doing and to keep up with things that others are doing.  But to really add “value”, the community site needs to provide information that people care about.  I haven’t figured out what that information is….. what do I want to find out about what my friends are doing?  Maybe trips they’ve been on…. or something cool they’ve done recently.  I don’t need to know that they’ve taken a quiz or joined a group called, “People that want to see someone eat something crazy”.  The ability to sift through the meaningless dribble to find the gems is tough. 

I think over the next few years, the cream will rise to the top…. in that people will figure out the sites that add value versus those that eventually get ignored.  Similar to how the glut of retail and auction sites in the late 90’s led to Amazon and Ebay prevailing as the top dogs, the community sites of our current time will lead to the one or two sites that maintain people’s interests.  Personally, I think the world will move away from community sites and move toward direct communication between people.  The world is getting used to passive communication (i.e. text messages, twitter posts, etc) where the communication is available when the receiver is ready to receive it.  That will probably change, once direct communication becomes more mainstream.  People will actually communicate with each other via some sort of Internet video/phone thingy that will make communicating as easy at watching your tv. 

For now, the blog will continue…. I like having an outlet for thought and insight, rather than trying to maintain a generic MySpace or Facebook page that can easily get lost in anonymity.  Happy early Thanksgiving everyone.  Looking forward to deep-frying that turkey… mmmmmm



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