I would like to suggest we adopt two technologies for improving communal living in The Reef BXL.
1. House calendar
We are always coming and going. Several times a week you find yourself asking “can anyone be home on Tuesday at 8.30 to open the door for a guest?” or “how many people are going to be at Thursday’s house dinner?”. I would like to have an online calendar to function as a timeline for life in the house. It would keep track of:
- When people are travelling.
- Guests and occupancy of the guest room(s).
- Events, like our Sunday brunches, dinners etc.
There are three problems with this. The first one is that it assumes everyone is on the same platform, or at least people are on interoperable platforms. I am no expert on calendar standards: most Reef stuff is currently on Google, but that’s not necessarily ideal (not open source).
The second one is that we need to decide how closely to integrate the House calendar with the work calendar. That’s another former non-issue that, paradoxically, emerged as we Edgeryders-the-company folks moved closer to each other. Just two weeks ago I was struggling to schedule a meeting in Brussels because I wanted to include @noemi, but I realised I had no idea of her travelling schedule except that it was very busy right until the end of September.
The third one is privacy. I guess the house calendar should be private.
2. Groceries bank
When Noemi moved in, the three of us started sharing all of the food supplies. We will see if our next housemate, David will also want to be part of this. I propose a jar in the kitchen with grocery money: we each put 50 EUR in, then anyone doing groceries picks up cash from it. When it’s empty, we refill. I think this is a simple way to ensure we are sharing fairly, and to keep track of how much we are spending on food.
To prevent any disagreement, we can make this simple low tech more robust by adding two things:
- We keep receipts in the same jar for a week or so before throwing them away. People can choose to look at them if they are in doubt as to what was bought. Exception: market stalls here are exempt from issuing receipts.
- We exclude certain “luxury” items from the sharing. If I really want Alba truffles or Möet & Chandon, I’ll have to pay for them myself.
What do people think? @nadia, Noemi?