A decade ago, Sun founder Bill Joy prophesied a future without fixed prices, where bots would negotiate our most quotidian economic transactions. His future is about to become our present.
TaskRabbit is like eBay for real-world labor….It was a wintry night in February 2008, when [ Leah ] Busque, a 28-year-old engineer at IBM in Cambridge, Massachusetts, realized that she needed dog food for her yellow lab, Kobe. She wanted nothing more than to get someone else to trudge outside in the snow. “I thought, wouldn’t it be nice if there were a place online you could go,” she says. “A site where you could name the price you were willing to pay for any task. There had to be someone in my neighborhood who was willing to get that dog food for what I was willing to pay.”
A new iPhone app has created a marketplace for public parking, connecting those vacating a space with those searching for one — for a fee.
Parking Auction launched earlier this week on Manhattan’s Upper West Side. The matchmaking service is beta-testing, and the folks behind it hope to expand worldwide, creating communities of relaxed, smartphone-armed parkers.
“If I’m parked on the street and wouldn’t mind moving my car to a spot half a mile away that isn’t residential, I may be happy to give it up to my neighbor that just got home from East Hampton on a Sunday night with two kids in a car she has to unload,” said founder Brian Rosetti. “We think that’s quite a neighborly and valuable service.”