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Saturday, February 10, 2007

Modern Technology

I was checking my credit card transactions on-line the other day and marveled at how fast they are posted after the fact. In the old days, you got your statement and it showed charges you made last month. The newest charge would still be about a week old, and any charges you made after that would be on the next month's statement.

Today, you can see the charges rack up on the same day you incurred them - maybe even within hours - I've never checked. This made me imagine the following scenario.

A man comes home from work and sees a note from his wife that she's gone shopping with a friend. He thinks, Oh, no - she always overspends when she shops with this particular friend. Later, while looking at the budget, he happens to sign onto his account at the bank and looks at his credit card transactions.

He sees a rather large charge from a department store, and sees that it was made that day. He sighs, and continues his work. Later on, he needs to go back to that account, and sees yet another somewhat expensive purchase, this time at a shoe store.

He thinks, Oh my god, my wife's going nuts with the credit card. He calls his wife's cell phone, but gets her voice mail, so she must be talking to someone. About a half hour later - another charge - this time at a hair salon. He calls again - instant voice mail - and leaves her a message.

Then he has a thought. It occurs to him he might be able to follow her path through the shopping mall by tracking her charge purchases. By plotting her activity, and considering her habits, he calculates that she should be right around the intimate apparel shop. So he calls there.

"How may I help you?"

"Yes, I'm looking for my wife. I'm wondering if you happened to have seen a woman - tall, blond, wearing a red leather jacket - probably talking on her cellphone?"

"Yes! She actually just left."

"Did she make a purchase?"

"She sure did! Two hundred and two dollars worth!"

"AAAAARGHHH!!"

This scenario may be far-fetched, but as modern-day technology improves, we may find more novel ways to use the real-time information that such technology can provide. In this case, a man tracking his wife's whereabouts by following her up-to-the-minute credit card purchases. How would YOU use new technology?

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3 Comments:

Blogger briliantdonkey said...

It's not as far fetched as one might think. I often call the bank literally seconds after I make a deposit TRYING to catch the computer behind, and haven't managed to do so as of yet. Charges I am sure take longer, but give it time.

BD

Monday, February 12, 2007 9:28:00 PM  
Blogger Rune said...

Actually, that scenario can happen, but the best means would be the cell phone, as it goes from tower to tower. With satellite, and gps technology, in the next 2 years, you will be able to literally track the location, speed of travel, and whether or not they dropped their phone. You'll not only be able to track how long she was in the shoe store, but how long it took her to get from the high heels section, to the trainers.

Sunday, February 25, 2007 5:20:00 PM  
Anonymous The Sarcasticynic said...

OK, Rune, you've just convinced me to leave the phone in the hotel when I am out of town on business.

Sunday, February 25, 2007 6:49:00 PM  

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