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(New York Magazine)   Bubble: I saw the best minds of my generation destroyed by VC, starving hysterical founders, dragging themselves through the city streets til dawn, disrupting the laundry biz   (nymag.com) divider line 39
    More: Unlikely, Silicon Valley, first world problems  
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2784 clicks; posted to Geek » on 22 May 2014 at 5:01 PM (18 weeks ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



39 Comments   (+0 »)
   
View Voting Results: Smartest and Funniest
 
2014-05-22 02:04:38 PM
Looking around at the newly minted billionaires behind the enjoyable but wholly unnecessary Facebook and WhatsApp, Uber and Nest, the brightest minds of a generation, the high test-scorers and mathematically inclined, have taken the knowledge acquired at our most august institutions and applied themselves to solving increasingly minor First World problems.

are people really too lazy to do their own laundry?  i get it if you don't have the equipment at home.  but if you do, no way you are hiring a service for that.  and if you can't afford a washer and dryer, can you really afford to hire a laundry service?
 
vpb [TotalFark]
2014-05-22 02:22:47 PM
Dude, Nam was a long time ago.
www.poundland.co.uk
Charlie doesn't surf.
 
2014-05-22 02:39:51 PM
...in other news, someone is now making shot-glass chocolate cookies for putting milk in.
 
2014-05-22 02:51:45 PM
I'm not really getting the Howl reference but I'm feeling a little slow today.
 
2014-05-22 03:30:36 PM

SlothB77: are people really too lazy to do their own laundry?


People are too lazy to cook their own food, take care of their own lawn, or clean their own house.  Of course there are people too lazy to do their own laundry.

Plus, I think the reason they are going after big cities, is due to the high number of apartment and condo dwellers that have to use communal coin operated laundry machines in the building.  They tend to be expensive, and a hassle (machines are all in use when you want to use them, some asshole used bleach before you and didn't clean up his spill, resulting in your clothes getting destroyed, etc).

I know the laundromat near the Target I go to has a "drop off" desk for people who don't want to do their own laundry.
 
2014-05-22 05:24:39 PM
Does laundry have enough of a margin to add pick and superfluous food?
 
2014-05-22 05:25:21 PM

robbiex0r: Does laundry have enough of a margin to add pick-up and superfluous food?


/moran
 
2014-05-22 05:28:18 PM
Mommy stopped washing my clothes. Wah wah wah.

Is it dirty? Wash it.
Is it not dirty? Don't wash it.

Make up your own mind, and don't come whining to your blog when people tell you you smell like filth.

Or, whine on your blog. No one cares. Get over yourself.
 
2014-05-22 05:39:00 PM

brap: I'm not really getting the Howl reference but I'm feeling a little slow today.


That was my reaction too. Maybe the headline is supposed to be Jew baiting?
 
2014-05-22 05:58:26 PM
"Actually," he said, "we're starting to get a lot of requests for healthy treats instead of cookies."

Jesus people, it's a little promo item. Get over yourselves. If the cookie comes to your house, you DON'T have to farking eat it. It's a freebie. Throw it away, give it to someone, save them in a jar for when your farking grandkids come over...

At my last job, the company that handled our toner refills added a pack of jellybeans to the box. Guess what people did who were on the kind of diet that a single jellybean could ruin? They farking gave them to someone else. They didn't try to change what the free goodies were.

CSB:
Here at my job we have a stocked break room, a couple of free soda machines, chips, cookies, oatmeal in the mornings, bananas, apples...

Occasionally, they put out something like Gummi Bears, but the oatmeal, bananas and apples are a regular, restocked at beginning of the day, each of the two breaks and lunch.

Anyway, one of the days they put out Gummis, they were sitting right smack in front of the fruit that is there on 4 occasions throughout the day, every day. Our manager was in there, and an employee was loading up on some of the Gummis and said to our boss "You know, these Gummis are a great snack, but I wonder if maybe we could have some healthy snacks occasionally?". All the boss could say is 'There is literally a bowl of fruit RIGHT THERE, next to those Gummi bears, what else do you want?".

Farking other people's kids...
 
2014-05-22 06:05:20 PM
where do the spinsters of utica come in
 
2014-05-22 06:31:01 PM
If these smarmy nerd farkfaces think they can come up with an iphone app or something that can out-do the average neighborhood's Chinese fluff-n-fold, I'd love to see them try.
 
2014-05-22 06:40:55 PM

SlothB77: Looking around at the newly minted billionaires behind the enjoyable but wholly unnecessary Facebook and WhatsApp, Uber and Nest, the brightest minds of a generation, the high test-scorers and mathematically inclined, have taken the knowledge acquired at our most august institutions and applied themselves to solving increasingly minor First World problems.

are people really too lazy to do their own laundry?  i get it if you don't have the equipment at home.  but if you do, no way you are hiring a service for that.  and if you can't afford a washer and dryer, can you really afford to hire a laundry service?


What, the rugged individualists living in our major metropolitan areas?

Anyway, I'm pretty sure that people have had other people do their laundry since laundry was invented.
 
2014-05-22 06:52:29 PM

Mikey1969: "Actually," he said, "we're starting to get a lot of requests for healthy treats instead of cookies."

Jesus people, it's a little promo item. Get over yourselves. If the cookie comes to your house, you DON'T have to farking eat it. It's a freebie. Throw it away, give it to someone, save them in a jar for when your farking grandkids come over...

At my last job, the company that handled our toner refills added a pack of jellybeans to the box. Guess what people did who were on the kind of diet that a single jellybean could ruin? They farking gave them to someone else. They didn't try to change what the free goodies were.

CSB:
Here at my job we have a stocked break room, a couple of free soda machines, chips, cookies, oatmeal in the mornings, bananas, apples...

Occasionally, they put out something like Gummi Bears, but the oatmeal, bananas and apples are a regular, restocked at beginning of the day, each of the two breaks and lunch.

Anyway, one of the days they put out Gummis, they were sitting right smack in front of the fruit that is there on 4 occasions throughout the day, every day. Our manager was in there, and an employee was loading up on some of the Gummis and said to our boss "You know, these Gummis are a great snack, but I wonder if maybe we could have some healthy snacks occasionally?". All the boss could say is 'There is literally a bowl of fruit RIGHT THERE, next to those Gummi bears, what else do you want?".

Farking other people's kids...


Dude.  You really need some farking rage-meds or your god damn heart is going to explode.

Is it so far fetched that people would prefer healthy snacks instead of cookies? Not for diet reasons or anything else, but because they LIKE fruits and vegetables? I know, wild concept.
 
2014-05-22 07:05:28 PM
1l2l3l4l5l6?

Am way too drunk, someone sumarise,  sheesh
 
2014-05-22 07:20:51 PM
far too long. Don`t care about his cookies or his washing.
 
2014-05-22 07:26:53 PM

kroonermanblack: Mikey1969: "Actually," he said, "we're starting to get a lot of requests for healthy treats instead of cookies."

Jesus people, it's a little promo item. Get over yourselves. If the cookie comes to your house, you DON'T have to farking eat it. It's a freebie. Throw it away, give it to someone, save them in a jar for when your farking grandkids come over...

At my last job, the company that handled our toner refills added a pack of jellybeans to the box. Guess what people did who were on the kind of diet that a single jellybean could ruin? They farking gave them to someone else. They didn't try to change what the free goodies were.

CSB:
Here at my job we have a stocked break room, a couple of free soda machines, chips, cookies, oatmeal in the mornings, bananas, apples...

Occasionally, they put out something like Gummi Bears, but the oatmeal, bananas and apples are a regular, restocked at beginning of the day, each of the two breaks and lunch.

Anyway, one of the days they put out Gummis, they were sitting right smack in front of the fruit that is there on 4 occasions throughout the day, every day. Our manager was in there, and an employee was loading up on some of the Gummis and said to our boss "You know, these Gummis are a great snack, but I wonder if maybe we could have some healthy snacks occasionally?". All the boss could say is 'There is literally a bowl of fruit RIGHT THERE, next to those Gummi bears, what else do you want?".

Farking other people's kids...

Dude.  You really need some farking rage-meds or your god damn heart is going to explode.

Is it so far fetched that people would prefer healthy snacks instead of cookies? Not for diet reasons or anything else, but because they LIKE fruits and vegetables? I know, wild concept.


Then let them buy their own, it's not that hard to figure out. 'Entitlement' was perfwft in TFA.
 
2014-05-22 07:40:53 PM

Mikey1969: Farking other people's kids...


It may be a nice perk, but I don't think that sort of thing should be going on in the office breakroom.
 
2014-05-22 07:48:25 PM
I read the headline as "I saw the best minds of my generation destroyed by VLC..." and was intrigued.
 
2014-05-22 07:52:36 PM
i1.ytimg.com
ANCIENT CHINESE SECRET!!!
 
2014-05-22 08:02:39 PM

The Evil Midnight Bomber What Bombs at Midnight: Mikey1969: Farking other people's kids...

It may be a nice perk, but I don't think that sort of thing should be going on in the office breakroom.


Don't knock it 'till you've tried it...

Seriously, I thought about that as I typed it and just figured I'd have fun with it if someone picked up on it.
 
2014-05-22 08:05:53 PM

Mikey1969: "Actually," he said, "we're starting to get a lot of requests for healthy treats instead of cookies."

Jesus people, it's a little promo item. Get over yourselves. If the cookie comes to your house, you DON'T have to farking eat it. It's a freebie. Throw it away, give it to someone, save them in a jar for when your farking grandkids come over...


Yes, a cookie or other lagniappe is a nice touch that offers competitive differentiation, and if a $5 cookie is the difference between being able to charge $20 for your service or $50 for your service, it's probably a decent idea to explore. But then, you're not really in the laundry business or the cookie business, you're in the image business, and that image is "I can afford to pay $50 for my laundry to get done."

The cookie also points to the foggy line between competitive differentiation and bikeshedding. Determining how to invest $1M in seed capital? Why, that's easy! We're going to disrupt laundry by charging people $50 to haul a sack of laundry across town. Is that a viable business plan? A founder might spend whole minutes on that before moving on to spend hours arguing over the merits of adding an option for leaf of the finest organic kale alongside the option for the fancy bakery cookie. The kale, after all, might be the thing that goes viral and helps draw market share from the underserviced gluten-free low-carb laundry submarket. Investing $1M is a lot of money, but $100 worth of kale per week and a few lines of code for a drop-down menu is something anybody can understand, so people debate which organic farmer's market from which to source the kale, rather than the viability of the business model itself.

Because obviously the laundry business is ripe for disruption. Because WhatsApp actually happened. If Uber can get a multibillion dollar valuation by disrupting the taxi industry, maybe the next big thing is in the laundry space. Never you mind that little Chinese lady who runs the shop down the street doesn't even have a web site. How does Grandma Wang expect to bootstrap her way to domination? Despite the fact that she works harder every day than Sandberg's ever worked in her life, she's not leaning in! Where's her growth-hacking strategy? Who's filling her twitter feed with followers and retweets? She doesn't even have a website, let alone proper SEO. Despite the fact that she's been in business for sixty years through multiple economic cycles, she's not crushing it!

TFA: "People with money are going to figure out ways to invest their money to make more money," he says. "If you look at finance, like when credit-default swaps were huge, right, everyone was investing in that. And when subprime was huge, people were investing in that. Now, it's Silicon Valley."

From the VC's perspective, it doesn't matter if the startup survives for longer than a year or two, so long as someone with bigger pockets comes along with a buyout because they're afraid of missing out in the event that laundry really is the Next Big Thing(tm). Having mined out the rich ore in the social media/targeted advertising space, the best minds of our generation are now ranging farther abroad for slimmer pickings -- but instead of a dozen startups building robots and spaceships and biotech cures for what ails ya, because that stuff is hard, man, when even the hotel and taxicab disruption spaces have been mined out by incumbents like Airbnb and Uber/Lyft -- all that's left is laundry.
Or, you know, it could just be another bubble, and this is another signpost on the way to the moment when it bursts.
 
2014-05-22 09:14:13 PM
Old: Wash & fold service with pickup and drop off
New: Wash & fold service with pickup and drop off and an app!
 
2014-05-22 09:17:30 PM

Robo Beat: If these smarmy nerd farkfaces think they can come up with an iphone app or something that can out-do the average neighborhood's Chinese fluff-n-fold, I'd love to see them try.


There's tinder for that.
Or grindr, if you prefer.
 
2014-05-22 09:22:45 PM

Angela Lansbury's Merkin: SlothB77: are people really too lazy to do their own laundry?

People are too lazy to cook their own food, take care of their own lawn, or clean their own house.  Of course there are people too lazy to do their own laundry.

Plus, I think the reason they are going after big cities, is due to the high number of apartment and condo dwellers that have to use communal coin operated laundry machines in the building.  They tend to be expensive, and a hassle (machines are all in use when you want to use them, some asshole used bleach before you and didn't clean up his spill, resulting in your clothes getting destroyed, etc).

I know the laundromat near the Target I go to has a "drop off" desk for people who don't want to do their own laundry.


Fluff and fold?   Yeah, for apartment people without good access to a building machine it's a good deal sometimes.  They charge by the piece or by the pound, run it throug, fold it and you can pick it up later.   Cheaper than a dry cleaner and saves the waiting on a communal machine.
 
2014-05-22 09:46:50 PM
Bubbles, from the Powerpuff Girls, said this?
 
2014-05-22 10:50:36 PM
24.media.tumblr.com
 
2014-05-22 11:23:27 PM
Reminded me of Little Miss Emperor

www.rockolymp.de
 
2014-05-22 11:38:02 PM
If the brightest minds are working on Facebook they're not the brightest minds. Smart people aren't tools to be deployed in the direction of the most important problems; they're just people. They'll do whatever they want.
 
2014-05-23 12:03:33 AM
Washio sounds like a spell Harry Potter uses to clean his clothes.
 
2014-05-23 12:26:04 AM
Lavate las manos!!!

/obscure?
 
2014-05-23 01:16:15 AM

robbiex0r: robbiex0r: Does laundry have enough of a margin to add pick-up and superfluous food?

/moran


There's a service in my city where they pick up and return your laundry via bicycle trailer.  I didn't think it would last, but they've been in business for three years now, so the answer is "Yes,"
 
2014-05-23 05:43:14 AM
I saw the worst of my generation applied by magic marker to dry wall.
I should be allowed to shoot my mouth off.
I should have a call-in show.
I should be allowed to glue my poster.
I should be allowed to think.

/Always the first thing that comes to mind.
 
2014-05-23 05:44:55 AM
Dammit, it should start, "I saw the worst bands of my generation..."
 
2014-05-23 05:50:52 AM

Dwight_Yeast: robbiex0r: robbiex0r: Does laundry have enough of a margin to add pick-up and superfluous food?

/moran

There's a service in my city where they pick up and return your laundry via bicycle trailer.  I didn't think it would last, but they've been in business for three years now, so the answer is "Yes,"


A lot of them are family operations, which probably has a lot to do with it - mom & dad working in the back, son running deliveries on a bike/scooter, daughter working the counter, that sort of thing.  You don't get the free labor of your family members, the prices are necessarily going to get less competitive.

The one I used to go to when I lived in NYC was like that.  Pretty sure they'd been in business for a long, long time, since there were all sorts of yellowing pictures and other such stuff on the walls.
 
2014-05-23 09:33:59 AM

abb3w: ...in other news, someone is now making shot-glass chocolate cookies for putting milk in.


Tell me about it.  Christ, talk about burying the lead.
 
2014-05-23 09:47:02 AM

Bonanza Jellybean: where do the spinsters of utica come in


Where were you, Garcia Lorca?
Huh?  JUST WHERE THE FARK WERE YOU?
 
2014-05-23 10:09:22 AM
I've used wash-and-fold service at my local laundromat a few times.  I travel a lot for my job and sometimes the clothes just pile up.  I get so little free time with my job that paying 90 cents or whatever per pound is worth it to me than to spend an entire Saturday doing laundry.
 
2014-05-23 11:00:58 AM

Sidecrab: 1l2l3l4l5l6?

Am way too drunk, someone sumarise,  sheesh


iat's an article about new approaches to dry cleaning / laundry service that reads like satire but, sadly, appears to be fact based.
 
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