Robert Blinov’s blog

LoungeKey

LoungeKey is a way to access airport lounges for free if you have a special bank card. They also happen to be the filthiest and sneakiest scam artist that I know. Staff from lounges participating in their program constantly lie and should be ashamed of themselves.

In London Luton Aspire Lounge, after staff swiped my card several times, I was told that it wasn’t accepted. Then they tempted to charge £150 for a free service.

After visiting a lounge in Moscow Vnukovo airport, where staff were overenthusiastic about telling me that my visit is free, I got charged $96 from a location in an American forest five days later.

All of this happened despite me never confirming any transactions in any way.

Don’t use LoungeKey and any of the lounges affiliated with them.

 No comments    1   8 h   scams

Slight improvements

We could all start working on a solution to make sure we never have to cut nails again. The brightest students would be creating new ways of genetically modifying ourselves, the industry would soar with competition, famous investors would buy stocks.

But no one is really tired of having to cut nails, so we just make a good nail clipper instead.

Humans solve pressing problems first, and once they’re solved, the new pressing problems are those that we considered non-problems the day before. The world improves one little bit at a time, and this is fantastic.

The nail problem will come back to haunt us in several hundred years.

 No comments    8   1 d   the world

The wider problem, part 3. Protesters getting fined

Part 2.

In summer 2019 many protesters in Moscow got sued by the city transport authorities and a restaurant for making them work harder (!). This seemed like complete nonsense until I understood the wider problem. Most Russians haven’t got rid of the bug of believing that the Tsar or the Party will fix their problems. Thus they believe the only person that can solve the problem is someone from the government. The government of course, became tired of this: solving every problem is impossible.

It took advantage of the popularity of opposition leaders and the protesters following them by fining these people high sums for minor misdemeanours. Most people in Russia haven’t crowdfunded anything, so by engaging in a nationwide discourse, the state created a situation in which people would impulsively help them, by crowdfunding. People learned about crowdfunding to later use it for personal matters. Russians got richer and Russia got better. This is especially noteworthy as Russia established a new crowdfunding law on January 1, 2020.

 No comments    13   12 d   problem solving   Russia
 No comments    18   17 d   buses   design   wayfinding

The wider problem, part 2. Ground floor room

Part 1.

When something seems like a solution to a problem, look beyond.

This summer I stayed at a Milanese hotel for a night. I found some of its eco-policies to be admirable, while others to be ridiculous. One of the ridiculous ones was giving me a room on the ground floor. “We are afraid of wasting precious energy powering the elevator as this would harm the environment”, they said. These are fancy words for “we want to save money”.

They also did not think that sound pollution is more of a problem for me than using excess electricity. I might have come up with some fantastic idea if it weren’t for the dogs barking next door.

Part 3.

The world needs victims

Problems are solved after misfortunes happen, therefore big change happens after big tragedies. This is sad, but that’s how the world rolls.

 No comments    15   18 d   life
 No comments    11   19 d   maths   video

Morse code tapping to unlock

Today’s phones can be woken by tapping the screen. Future phones will be unlocked by tapping in a pattern similar to Morse code.

 No comments    18   21 d   design   user interface

Tomato juice

I’ve always loved tomato sauce, but I never liked tomato juice. But in July I discovered this to later fall in love with:

It’s mostly tomato, but mixed with orange, carrot, and ginger. While I prefer freshly made juices, it’s a pretty good packaged one.

 No comments    26   25 d   drinks   food   Italy

Microtasks

When in a queue, instead of playing useless games, I complete microtasks. I have many notes full of tiny tasks, each one taking at most a minute to complete. I can’t stand wasting time.

 No comments    25   26 d   life
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