I don't know about you, but I keep running into examples in the world where technology could be used to improve the experience. Here are a few recent examples:
A friend of mine was charged a fee for not using her chequing account for a 3 month period. When she called the bank they told her that they are trying to encourage people to come into the branch. That doesn't make much sense... but that's what they said. So, my friend plans to write herself a cheque every month for the amount of $1 and deposit it into the same account. Complete silliness!
I've been using the Toronto Transit lately and the last time I needed to buy tokens, I noticed two things. First of all, you can only buy tokens for cash. Credit cards are not accepted. I can use my credit card to pay $1.50 for parking somewhere, but can't buy 8 tokens for $20 unless I pay cash. The day I was there, the machine wasn't working, so I had to walk a fair distance to find a ticket booth that had an employee to sell me tokens. I don't carry cash very often, so I must first find a bank machine. Don't you think this could be easily automated and simplified?
In some cases the technology exists, but someone chooses to bypass the technology and end up making the experience a miserable one. For instance, I ordered a Blackberry that was to be shipped to my home via UPS. The phone company I purchased the Blackberry from decided to limit UPS in how and when they delivered the phone to me. UPS could only deliver during regular business hours when it just so happens that I'm at work! I asked for them to deliver to the local UPS store so I could pick up the phone after hours, but again the phone company restricted UPS and forced them to deliver to their central warehouse which is very far from my house. I should have cancelled the phone, but instead I had to work from home in order to receive the shipment.
What can we do about all this stupidity? IBM's current campaign about a SMARTER PLANET is the ultimate answer... and hopefully they are successful in improving the situation somewhat.
There are three books that I've read where the answer is provided... and I encourage all to read these books and help find people to build a smarter planet:
Also take a look at some cool videos that IBM put together:
Do you have examples of stupidity as well? Share them if you like.