Looking for Mr Right (Motor Engineers)

May 27, 2008 at 12:35 am Leave a comment

I came across a problem of using print directories at the weekend. Picture this. 830 pm on a Saturday night. Two very tired young kids in the car. The car stalled and doesn’t start. We are blocking two driveways. A few kindly knocks on a door and a request for some brawn to help push it somewhere safer and we are ok. Luckily we are not too far from home.

The next morning the search begins for someone to fix it. Scan the printed directory for our local area. Oh silly me, you don’t look under car service or car repair, but motor engineers and repairers. When was the last time you said “my car is in need of a motor engineer?” Perhaps in 1911.

Were there any service centres listed for our make of car – probably – but unless the manufacturers name was the first name of the business, I wouldn’t know unless I scanned the whole list looking for that key word. No thanks, I have better things to do with my time, like watching paint dry.

And whilst I am in the mood for a rant , and apologies to those who classify and index printed directories, why aren’t the headings intuitive?. Why are some things under “car”, and some things under “motor?” And why isn’t there a consistent cross reference so that you don’t have to go to the front of the directory and scrabble around for a magnifying glass – because the print appears to be designed for mice with 20/20 vision – to find the correct heading for what you are looking for?

So CarbonBlacks’ move to create the largest online automotive directory in Australia searchable by any word you wish to use seems like an absolutely fabulous idea – just wish it had happened last weekend rather than on 1 July this year.

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