Friedrich Nietzsche wrote, “Early in the morning, at the break of day, in all the freshness and dawn of one’s strength, to read a book – I call that vicious!” There is a liberating freedom about the early hours of Saturday or Sunday. Unlike the other days of the week, my mind has more freedom. I wake up unfocused on the routine of my workday and embrace any number of ideas or influences that come my way. I like to read – not books like I did as a teenager so much as digital media. One of my favorite inspirations is Ted Talks – a video.

A profound Ted Talk inspired me this morning in a way that I believe can transform our MLS systems – its called What3Words. The thesis is pretty simple. Chris Sheldrich and his mathematician friend divided the earth into 3-meter squares. There are 57 trillion of them, FYI. Using 40,000 words – each square is assigned a specific three-word location. They have already translated the 40,000 words into 14 languages. I live at saylor.professional.refills.

Please take 5 minutes to watch the talk below:


Did you know that Carmel-by-the Sea, California does not have addresses? The post office does not deliver to this quaint artist community nestled along the Pacific shores of Monterey County. Its delightful for MLSListings and all of the technology solutions that try to map properties. They use latitude and longitude, rooftop pin drops, and the like. In America, our Nation’s MLSs can quickly and easily add a field that translates the geolocation into simple words that people can remember. When I was living there a few days a month for a project, I lived at Lincoln, 2 South East of 5th. That means Lincoln Street, two houses South East of the Intersection of Lincoln and 5th. The company had an office in the front of the property and two luxury apartments in the back. My place was insertion.lifelike.singing. The office address is sisters.boring.daft

In America, and elsewhere around the world. People are living without addresses. Our homeless situation clearly expresses this problem. If you are living without an address, you are living outside of society. The Ted Talk says that the United Nation’s suggests that Billions of people are living without addresses. That is the good natured and a good spirited part that MLSs could provide to every citizen of our nation.Vacant Land

But there is a bigger opportunity here that is more core to the spirit of the Multiple Listing Services and our friends at the Real Estate Standards Organization. Everyone is struggling with a universal address system. But this one is better.

In the image above, my friend Nancy has an address on Newsome springs road. It is a long winding ranch road with a number of different ranch buildings. Her home is literally a mile from her address. Nancy lives in regard.spectator.evolution. Her street address is at geology.plankton.streaming.

Sometimes the best things ever conceived are the simplest. This one is very simple and very elegant.

Reasons to do it:

  • Inaccurate addressing limits businesses and frustrates customers.
  • There’s no human-friendly way to give a location to a machine.
  • Billions of people worldwide have no reliable address at all.