I bought a jar of peanut butter on the internet.
There’s nothing special about it. It’s just a big old jar of Skippy, but it will be delivered to my door, and it will be delivered to my door for exactly the same price that I could have gotten at the grocery store in town.
So, that amounts to the same price, minus the time to go out and get it, minus the time parking, minus the time sidetracked by the latest sales display of fine Hostess products.
Minus the expense and calories associated with the display of fine Hostess products.
Thanks to the miracle of the internet, I can now subscribe to peanut butter, and have a jar delivered every month, with no further action on my part. I can automate the entire grocery shopping experience.
I’m big on saving time.
The other thing–peanut butter aside–that I like about the internet, is that I don’t have to buy the very same things all my neighbors are buying. All those weird tastes you pick up over the years? The born into an immigrant family treats? The spices picked up from a roommate? That recipe you begged a restaurant owner for? Yup. That stuff is on the internet, ready to be delivered to your door. And it’s not at the local supermarket.
We’re still a ways from bread, milk, and produce, but I do think we’re aiming that direction.
And the benefits would be even bigger, if I were living on a farm outside town.
I don’t know what the town will look like, after we all shift toward that kind of convenience and selection. Another empty store front, but that’s nothing new. And more people leaving, because even the crappy jobs are going somewhere else.
If I were going to start a business here and now, what would it be? What would stay?