The Vyoo Story, sit back and enjoy...
The idea for Vyoo was conceived from Rajiv and my (Marc’s) shared frustration with planning travel online. We traveled, and still do, quite frequently, and we’d often head off to places our friends and family had never been. This required us to rely on information from people we didn’t know, people who left reviews and recommendations on the websites we frequented. How could we trust this information? How do we know who these people are? How do we know if they share our interests? The truth is: we didn’t.
I finally reached my breaking point in the Fall of 2004. I was moving to Thailand, so the importance of finding a decent place to stay and a neighborhood to stay in carried more weight. I spent so much time frustratingly referencing and cross-referencing websites that I just left without booking anything. It was at this point that I realized there really had to be a better way. A way tailored to me.
At the time I thought about writing my own guide book and as I embarked on that process, realized it was a long and thankless project that would only serve my own needs — and those who shared my taste. So I shelved it for a while
Fast forward to business school, where I met Rajiv. We were sitting poolside in Vegas commiserating about the difficulty we had with planning our trips that summer. We came to the not-so-startling conclusion that there are certain personality indicators that define our preferences and affect our decision making processing in a variety of different contexts (what to eat, what clothes to wear, etc). In fact there’s a whole branch of academia devoted just to this topic: it’s called Psychology.
Unfortunately, most websites don't currently take into account your individual preferences. A user has to sift through the vast amounts of information, find what may be pertinent, and then make an informed decision. So how could we improve this process? It came down to creating trust between people and the information they shared?
If we only could learn more about individual users, then we could facilitate delivering better information by creating relative scales of compatibilty. Sure, we could have attempted to track online behaviors or done some semantic searching (like some people are now doing), but why not just ask you what you like...using a proven methodology? So that's what we decided to do. Sit back, answer a few questions, and let us help you help yourself.