Fuzzy Logic Meeting Points

Posted on:April 25 2006

In Austria, more than 87% of all inhabitants own a mobile phone. That's really a lot. And there are 5 mobile phone providers (I think) which– considering that Austria is pretty small - causes a heavy price war between them, making the phone prices and the call-charges pretty cheap. And this in turn has some heavy implications on everything, it totally changes the way we speak, organize ourselves, think, and communicate. One thing about this really stretches my nerves: Sometimes I think nobody today is able to arrange a meeting point and time anymore. Before mobile phones became popular, it went like this:

A: "Hey, let's meet again, at the subway station just there at that entrance, ok?"
B: "Ok, 6 o'clock?"
A: "Fine."

And this worked. Believe me or not, A usually really would meet B at 6 o'clock at the subway station. Today, this is totally different and doesn't work anymore. Nearly nobody is negotiating meeting times and places making it impossible to organize anything. But even worse, if you define some meeting point, nobody is keeping that appointment. Instead, people are coming too late (half an hour is not unusual) and as an excuse calling the other party after half of that time with something like "Are you there already? I'm on the way already, just 2 minutes…". But maybe this is also part of the Austrian tradition that everybody has to come 10 minutes after the negotiated appointment and I'm just blaming mobile phones here. I refuse to estimate how much time of my life I already wasted while waiting for people beeing late.
Maybe I'm simply always arriving on time and should change that. Maybe I simply should be delayed 10 minutes by default, perverting the system, beating it with its own rules.


This happens all over the world. The second you start showing up late to get back at them, they will criticise you for being late. You'll never win.
2006-04-25 14:14:00

The problem about being on time, is that everybody thinks you've got nothing more importent to do ;-)
Artur Hallmann
2006-04-25 14:23:00

A half year ago you would see me standing at the trainstation waiting for a couple of friends ... Today I'm on my way at the estimated time, and because of that about 10 min too late. Since this change we are arriving at the station exactly the same time :D
2006-04-25 16:11:00

Time is broken! that's what I always used to say.

Have you ever woken up thinking it's monday, but it's really friday? hehe

Just remember time is relative, and everyone is experiencing it differently in their own reality. You can't blame them for that.

Try not to think about the time to be there at all, and just leave the house intuitively. Usually when I do that, I meet the people spot on, believe it or not. With some people it works better than with others, strangely enough.

Maybe it's a good idea to bring a laptop so you can sit down and code on Irrlicht while waiting. :)
2006-04-25 20:32:00

hehe, btw I think there are already 7 providers here in Austria ;)
2006-04-25 20:59:00

Austria is just too near to italy. That's all. Germany's influence gets tainted by that. ;)
Baal Cadar
2006-04-25 23:05:00

"Time is broken!" i love that :D
2006-04-26 00:29:00

Side Note: "That's really much" is not a well structured statement. Something like, "That is a considerable amount" or "That is really a lot."

Also "and as excuse calling" should be "and as an excuse calling"

You are alway comment on your bad english. Just trying to help if it pisses you off just say so. :)

You have got C++ down so we can't blame you for not have English 100% (Not that I am says I do, because I certainly do not)

Irrlicht Rocks
2006-04-26 04:07:00

I understand what you mean about the cell phones.

I don't understand how we used to say to people who did not know where we were driving to, "Just follow me." Almost always one the people gets left behind because of a yellow light or at a turn and then you have to call the other person as say where the hell are you.

I know I used to be able to do that but now I just don't know how. I even get worried if someone shows up 5 minutes late and start to worry because you would think they would call.

Maybe these phones really are frying our brains!
2006-04-26 04:10:00

I know where you are coming from here. I've seen very practical minded people develop horrible social habits as the result of their love of playing phone tag. I can't arrange a simple meeting in front of the cineplex with my own brother without him wanting me to call him again before leaving the house. He'll say something like, 'call before you leave, so we can firm things up.'

Man, what the hell do you think I'm doing on the phone with you right now?

That sort of thing happens often with many other people in other context as well.
2006-04-26 07:26:00

@tsm: thx, corrected :)
2006-04-26 12:41:00

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