An Ultimate Web 2.0 Experience

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So I had lots of ideas for Friday night – called up lots of people to accompany me into movie, tennis or just-going-somewhere. But no one was free – everyone wanted to do either Saturday and Sunday – which is fine.

So I settled down with a nice movie. And I felt like pizza – last time I had was in New York! Long time…

Checked out Domino’s and Pizza Hut (I usually like Pizza Hut better – and that they serve Pepsi helps – my close friends know I’d pick Pepsi over Coke any day – although now I hardly have any of them!). But soon figured out that Pizza Hut cannot deliver at my place – which is odd, considering I am smack in the middle of Seattle downtown! Anyway saw that Domino’s did.

And then the cool experience started. Just use their Web order process once – even if you are not a fan of Pizzas!

Ordering was cool! You could edit your pizza in all sorts of cool ways (add this topping only to l/right/all sides, add that too etc.) Nice!

But the best part was after ordering – Just after I confirmed the order a “Tracker” dashboard appeared. And it showed five stages – Order Placed, Prep, Bake, Box and Delivery.

Each stage had a width proportonate to the time it would take (estimated). And as soon as a stage is done it turns Green, the next stage starts blinking and a status message appears at the bottom saying something like “Matthew put your pizza into the oven at 9:03 PM”

Cool ha? Don’t believe me – see the attached screen shots – I was so amazed I had to take the screen shots!

Of course there was a glitch with it – after the 4th stage it went back to the 3rd! And I was not so worried about the pizza as I was helping out these guys carry this super idea. So I called them up (and the direct number just flashes on screen – no searching for it) and let them know.

Definitely one of the best web experiences I’hve had in the recent times. Now that I work in a web-based company I’ve started noticing these things and have become a good netizen!

So this definitely counts among the better Web 2.0 experiences I’ve had recently. Others include Google Map’s public transport times. So you just enter the Source and the Destination (which I have got stored) and click the “take public transport” – voila – it shows you for the current time 3 options for you to take. Like go to this bus stop (walk 2 min) take the bus # 522 at 8:32 PM and get down at this stop (at 8:43 PM), walk home (1 min) and you are done!

And Amazon’s “we’ll-call-you-back” thing! Everyone whose tried calling customer care anywhere knows how much a pain it is to wait for someone to answer (after all the music or the mech voices _heliping_ you out). So you go to Amazon’s customer care page – and they’ll say – ok you can call us here at this number (and then identify yourself and give the customer care dude your 12-digit Order #). Or give us a number (or most of the time just select it from a drop down) and we’ll call you back! Right now.

And I was amazed – my phone started ringing the moment I clicked “call me” – and since I had used that feature the dude knew who I was and which order I was talking about. Less hassle everyone!

Things like these make me feel good about what I do – it’s exciting to be part of the Web 2.0 experience and specially when you are a part of making it!

Which reminds me – voting for the Best 100 Web 2.0 apps is on (alas I did not see Domino’s there) – but you can vote for your best apps. It ends March 31st – so go do it now!