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Technology is a wonderful thing and it makes our lives easier and easier everyday. I tend to relate new technology with something positive, but sometimes, it just pisses me off. I often find myself thinking "Dammit, why didn't I have something like this a couple years ago!" That's exactly what I thought this morning when I stumbled across Splitwise.
As a college student one of the big issues you always find yourself dealing with is your roommates and paying and splitting all the bills. Electricity, cable, rent and whatever else you might agree to splitting each month. You know it, every time you get to the end of the month, one person ends up being responsible, another was kinda responsible and the last blew all his money on rum and cokes and the girl he was trying to bring home 'vodka cran's'.
But this problem is no more with Splitwise.
The idea was hatched by Jonathan Bittner, 26, a graduate student in astrophysics at Harvard, (are we surprised?)who first introduced the site in February to help roommates figure out fair and equitable rent arrangements. “I’m a math nerd, and I love ethics, too,” he says on the site.
To achieve his goal of ultimately removing the end of month money argument, Mr. Bittner has teamed with Ryan Laughlin, a Yale computer science student (again are we surprised?), to expand the site’s offerings. The two boy geniuses have just started a beta version of their spanking new bill tracking tool, with the goal of eventually helping roommates keep on top of who owes who what.
Here's how it works: All roommates can enter what expenses they paid towards the end of the month bill. The calculator then tells you how much you owe the other roommates, if you're the "oh man, can you spot me" guy— or how much they owe you if your the responsible one. It will even e-mail you increasingly harsh reminders, as the due date for payment gets closer. At first, the e-mails start with, “Did you forget?” But if you still haven’t made a payment by the due date, it gets a little bitchier: “You’re leaving your roommates in the lurch!”
The Splitwise guys have even been so kind to also give us advice on how to deal with splitting the rent, how to deal and charge guests and when a girlfriend becomes a squatter and not a romantic caller. That is a subject i recommend you steer clear of. Seriously. Other than that, check out Splitwise. Awesome idea and wish it was around when I was living with roommates.
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