My name is Andrew Mackie.
I’m working to fix the problem of platforms. For a few years now I’ve been concerned about the impact that platforms (online marketplaces, seach engines, social networks and others) have on us. Platforms help us to connect with other people for ‘free’, but in reality they’re very expensive – they take vendors’ profits by distorting and homogenising our economy, society and information. My goal, God willing, is to address the problem of platforms, starting with the retail bicycle industry which is having trouble with a platform called Bike Exchange. I am actively developing a new marketplace, called right.bike, which is intended to:
- free bike stores from Bike Exchange, and
- create a sustainable business through which the wider problem of platforms can be addressed.
I’m dyslexic. Two years ago I learned that I have a dyslexic brain, which makes more sense of the decisions I’ve made (including starting three businesses and quitting four jobs). According to a book called the dyslexic advantage, it means that my brain processes information differently to most people and this has downsides and advantages. On the downside, for instance, it takes a lot of effort to read a book from cover to cover and some things will never hold my attention (such as the four jobs I quit). The upside, however, is that I can see the connections between distantly related concepts, I can prototype designs in my head and I can get the gist of almost any concept or situation quickly (which means I didn’t need to read the whole book anyway). If something holds my attention, I can probably understand how it works and what can be done to improve it.
I’m a Christian. I’ve followed Jesus all my life, except that until about 2009 I was too busy chasing money and status to give God the priority He deserved. That’s where my platform-bypassing project started, actually – I wanted to make stacks of cash for me and give God some of my leftovers. This was a problem because it became clear to me that my project couldn’t help people if I was trying to extract stacks of cash from it. Long story short, I found freedom in Jesus’ promise in Matthew 6:24-34 – that if I serve God and other people (‘seek first His kingdom’) I can trust God to meet my physical needs. This enabled me to make my project not-for-profit and I’ve worried less about money since.
I’m not blogging much here. For a while I blogged here about business, following Jesus and photography (because I used to be a commercial photographer back when there was something called ‘film’). My archives on the right hand side of your screen there, or you can find me occasionally on Twitter (@Andrew_Mackie for personal / Christian / dyslexia tweets or @OfferBots for project-related updates).
Thanks for stopping by.