A small case study on the secondary usefulness of Foursquare

A small case study on the secondary usefulness of Foursquare

I hear a lot of arguments from friends about how they don’t think Foursquare could possibly be interesting or useful to their lives, and to them, I want to offer a little anecdote of awesome that just happened on my trip to San Francisco. I’m attending Web 2.0 Expo, and I started to hit the afternoon sleepytime. I pulled out my phone and went to Google Maps, found my location, and searched for “coffee.” Up came numerous cafes; the nearest was Starbucks, but I always try to find local coffee when I’m traveling. Slightly further away, past several other options, I saw Blue Bottle Cafe. I remembered from glancing at Foursquare the last few days that my friend Rod Begbie has checked into another Blue Bottle location near his office, and has remarked on how much he loves the coffee. The answer was clear.

Foursquare, in this case, doesn’t help me find my friends, or alert anyone to my whereabouts, or give me a snazzy badge. Through my ambient awareness of Rod’s check-ins, I knew where I could go to get what I needed without having to ask anyone, or pour through online reviews by strangers.

And my decaf Americano was damn good*.

*Yes, I drink decaf, even when I have the afternoon sleepies. The taste and the smell of coffee do a little bit to perk me back up. :-)