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Discover the value of every thing you own (trov.com)
34 points by jeffberezny 469 days ago | 17 comments



Is it possible that the highly affluent individual Trov seems to target would be too busy being highly affluent to use Trov? I don't mean to sound glib or naysay -- I just mean that that someone who's reached that level of wealth tends to have already delegated many of the functions Trov seems to offer via accountants and assistants. I suppose Trov's argument might be that Trov could disrupt/replace those delegates -- but I'm not quite seeing it. Just trying to puzzle this one out.

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Speaking of everything you own, I love Paul Graham's post on the topic: http://www.paulgraham.com/stuff.html

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That post reminded me of Carlin's skit about stuff: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MvgN5gCuLac

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Would it be fair to say that this is intended mostly for the high net worth individual?

At first I thought it was more of a way to keep track of a normal person's belongings, but with the appraisal feature, it seems to be more for collectibles.

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Thanks! I was puzzled by the site, unable to come with a reasonable use case for it, until I read your post.

I was specially intrigued by the idea of value variation and notification. "My refrigerator's or bed's market value will never increase", thought I while shaking my head at the website.

With collectibles, art, and a few more valuable items like cars and watches and, this may actually make sense. And I can rest knowing this service is definitely not for me.

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Mid-way on the page, the examples it shows are a $2.5M home, a $90k car, and a $20k painting. I think you are correct.

It's an interesting idea and it very well may succeed, but I think even here on HN its affluent target demographic will be at most a small percentage of readers.

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Sometimes the target of such a product is not high-net-worth individuals, but people who think high-net-worth individuals are the target and aspire to that status.

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For the consumer, this is a great way to feed the ego: "Looky! Looky! I has me a high value stuffs! Therefore, I'd must be wonderfuls! Mmmm I is feeling better in my lifes."

For the owners, this is a great way to find out what stuff people have so advertising can be targeted: "Oh look, Billie has two x's, so companies selling a similar x should really advertise to him/her...and pay us for the privilege"

What I really like about this is that I doubt many of us give a crap about cataloguing our possessions....until there's a freakin' app for it.

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Security should be a key priority for such a service - as it is, their data will be a treasure trove for criminals, so they should expect attacks by professionals.

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It appears that they do take certain security measures: http://www.trov.com/security/

Though, I'm not sure how I feel about some of their caveats, most notably 1 and 2 below, which correspond to exceptions about disclosing your data to third parties [1] and deleting your data [2]:

    [1] Unless legally required to comply under court order.

    [2] Unless compelled by a legal, court, judicial or administrative order to retain it.

    [3] [AES-256-CBC](http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Advanced_Encryption_Standard)
Number [3] above is in regards to the encryption standard they use for your data. Unfortunately, I can't comment on how good it is compared to other options (XTS, OCB), but it seems like [1] and [2] imply that they can get access to your data, so I think more explanation with regards to how they manage passwords / encryption keys is necessary to really judge the system.

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If they can be compelled to decrypt your data, their encryption system is probably worthless.

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Here's what I love about the idea: it's very easy to monetize with high-margin products and services. It's already closely tied to assets and purchasing with a valuable customer base. I see huge potential!

The problem I see is that it's going to be hard to get people to enter all of their things into an app on an ongoing basis. It makes life seem more complicated by adding an additional step. If users fall behind and fail to enter items the app loses its usefulness. It seems to me the best thing Trov can do is make adding new items as easy as possible.

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Well, remember the 80-20 rule: it is likely that only a small number of your assets constitute the vast majority of your net worth. You're not going to enter _everything you own_. Simply entering the valuable things should be a sufficient approximation, which is what I think the user would be interested in, rather than a pedantic to-the-last penny assessment, since Trov itself returns merely _estimates_.

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The first thing I thought was 'Do I really want to publicize all I own?' I don't have much of significant value, so I'd expect the high net worth individuals whom this appears to be targeted at would be even more concerned about becoming targets (e.g. of advertisers and thieves) based on the data it collects.

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This is like a cat burglars wet dream.

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could be a good way to document things for insurance purposes.

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It needs an easy but obscure way your friends could "hack" your trove account and find out how much all your stuff was worth. Or maybe make it like a sign-off of some sort... "verify your friend's trove". Maybe then it doesn't show what your stuff is valued at, but your friends can 'hack' it by viewing source.

Then it'd be nice for vouyerism and conspicuous consumption, maybe it'd go 'viral' when view source made it to twitter. Otherwise you better pay people for filling out an advertising survey.

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