Would you trade big brother for bigger savings?

Progressive Insurance has thrown down a new Scruples question: Would you give up privacy about your driving habits if you could earn a greater discount?

With the introduction of its new driving monitor, Progressive is offering a more subtantial discount on auto insurance – advertised as "up to 30%" off premiums – for users who install the company's device, dubbed "Snapshot". After a 30-day period, drivers return the device and Progressive may offer a discount which subscribers can keep as long as they are Progressive customers.

The device watches driving habits such as time of day, braking, and how many miles driven per day during a 30 day period. According to Progressive, those are the only metrics their monitoring, but there's really nothing to prevent the device from noting other items, such as top RPM, top speed, and other metrics.

So… would you trade-in a little privacy to save up to 30% on your car insurance?

NatGeo presents The Most Typical Human 2011

If you were to combine all of the character traits of the world's 7 billion people, what would be the typical profile for mankind? NatGeo knows.

The most typical human:

– is a 28-year-old, right handed man

– makes less than $12,000 per year, has a cell phone, but no bank account

– is Han Chinese

Of course, this won't be the most typical human for long. As trends and populations shift, the most typical human in twenty years will likely be younger, perhaps female, and Indian. Pretty fascinating, huh? NatGeo has even more details in this great video:

Where the Hell is Matt?

I picked up a link to this video this morning. Perhaps I've done a little too much traveling or a little too much introspection of late; however, I'm completely moved by it.

When you look past the – quite honestly – terrible dancing, there is something so simple and universal about the message. There is so much to enjoy & celebrate in each of our lives and we are all connected by the human spirit; therefore, there is so much to enjoy & celebrate in *all* of our lives. We are all one people.

Perhaps you've seen it, but it was completely new to me. Without further ado…

For more on Matt's journey & experiences, please visit Where the Hell is Matt?

Dupree on Nailing the Interview

I don't think I'll be taking interview tips from Dupree….

Personnel Manager: "So, why don't you describe yourself, Mr. Dupree."
Dupree: "I'm a people person. Very personable. I absolutely insist on enjoying life. Um, not so task-oriented. I'm not a workhorse. If you're looking for a Clydesdale, I'm probably not your man. Like, I don't live to work. It's more the other way around. I work to live. Um, incidentally, what's your policy on Columbus Day?"
Personnel Manager: "Uh, we, we work."
Dupree: "Really? The guy discovered the New World. I'm afraid to even ask about Victory over Japan Day."

2009 Playboy Party School Rankings

Here's Playboy Magazine's 2009 list of the Top Party School Rankings:

1. Miami
2. Texas
3. San Diego State
4. Florida
5. Arizona
6. Wisconsin
7. Georgia
8. LSU
9. Iowa
10. West Virginia
11. Maryland
12. UC-Santa Barbara
13. Penn State
14. Lehigh
15. Arizona State
16. Washington State
17. Rollins College
18. Ohio U.
19. Michigan State
20. Cal State – Chico
21. Hampshire
22. James Madison
23. Florida State
24. Indiana
25. SUNY Albany

Twitter: The Next Big Thing for Realtors?

My brother-in-law, our real estate agent for two purchases and one sale, is now on Twitter.

I must first concede that I haven't seen my brother-in-law in a couple of years; however, I don't recall him being the "alpha geek" type. Capable on computers? Yes. Curious about new technologies? Yeah… I guess so, but more golfer than geek.

Where am I going with all this? Twitter is mainstream. Heck… Oprah is doing a show on Twitter tomorrow!?! (Note to self: Prepare for massive fail whales tomorrow.)

Which leads me to wonder – is Twitter the next big thing for real estate agents?

For most good realtors, word of mouth is extremely important. Many have a dedicated list of followers and are anxious to work those realtionships to acquire new listings, referral marketing on current listings, and – ultimately – to sell more homes. And these are exactly the types of relationships that can be created, nourished, and expanded using Twitter.

For example, a realtor could EASILY tweet new houses for sale with a link to the listing website… or snap a cameraphone pick to post as a TwitPic… or post the location using Brightkite or a GPS capable Twitter app, etc… or… all three.

When a realtor sees a new listing that would fit a motivated buyer, send a direct message: "Just found a 3BR split level w/ pool. Great for you. Great community. Flexible seller." As a buyer, (1) here's a house I might want to buy, and (2) my agent is getting me great access to this listing.

But its not just about nurturing and expanding relationships, right? At some point, you need new relationships. And here's where twitter could be really handy. For example, I just ran a quick Twitter search for "austin realtor" and it returned 14 tweets, including three people who were preparing to meet with a realtor soon. If you're monitoring a similar search in your market via Tweetdeck or similar search-enabled Twitter app, you could easily engage these potential customers.

Now… grain of salt… I know nothing about the real estate industry and I have never been a realtor. But if I were… I sure would be using Twitter.

Perspective… I have one.

Via Pete….

I think the "outrage" that we're seeing from our Congress is disgusting. These jokers voted to give them the money, voted to permit the bonuses, and now are "outraged" that they were given… just as Congress knew they would be.

Congress is now spending day after day putting AIG in the headline for mandatory bonuses that equal ten cents on every $100. Are we clear here? One one-hundredth!

Just stop, Congress. You've done quite enough already.