Fastnr: Tinder for the Industrial World

Tinder is the app that launches thousands of very short relationships every weekend. It’s an app that men use to say strange and insulting things to women. It’s where people post nearly-identical pictures of themselves skydiving in hopes of appearing to be daring and different. Pundits blame Tinder for everything from the rising STD rates to the complete breakdown of the social fabric in America. But in spite of all the scorn, Tinder’s numbers are huge. It boasts 50 million users and 1.4 billion swipes per day. That’s why I’m proposing something radical: Fastnr, a Tinder for Industrial companies.

Easy Product Shopping

People like Tinder because they’re shallow and care a lot more about a potential date’s looks than about personality, achievements, religious beliefs or sanity. Nobody reads those long, torturous essays on OkCupid or Match; Tinder doesn’t force people to write them. All you need is a small collection of flattering photos and you’re good to go.

Why should it be any different for industrial companies? Product desrcriptions? Spec sheets? CAD drawings? Engineers don’t need any of that. They can totally tell by looking at a photo of a product whether it will perform the way they need it to, solve the problem they’re dealing with and not cause their design to catch fire.

Photo credit: San Diego Shooter via / CC BY-NC-ND

Secret Algorithms: Ratings without Ratings

Tinder has an algorithm that secretly rates everyone who uses it. The code is most likely written by neckbeards who are mad at the women who won’t date them and disdain the ones who will. If Wikileaks ever decides to do something useful instead of randomly outing gay people in places like Saudi Arabia, they could release Tinder’s internal ratings of users and 50 million people could learn how truly un-hot they really are. (If that did happen, the stock market would either crash or shoot up so high The Wolf of Wall Street would look like a story about a lemonade stand.)

Secret ratings mean no one has to waste valuable time writing up case studies about industrial products or services. Customers never have to worry about writing reviews. A customer shopping on Fastnr may not get the very best product, but he’ll get the product that’s in his league.


Tinder is popular because you can swipe anywhere. In bed, in the bath, on the bus, on a train, in the checkout line at Target — users can find their dream date as easily as they can order a bucket of chicken.

Why not make shopping for fasteners, control panels, circuit boards and steel tubes just as easy?

Scope out the Competition

If, on a date, a Tinder user doesn’t click with the person sitting across the table, he or she can hide their phone under the table and find somebody better. This is not only a time saver, it’s also a useful distraction that allows one to ignore annoying bad-date blather.

If an engineer already knows a product isn’t the right one, why sit through some boring sales speech? Tune out the guy in the suit and find what you need on Fastnr instead.

Fastnr could do for the industrial sector what Tinder has done for dating. Now I just need to find someone to help me develop it. I’ve already got a great tagline. “Fastnr: for engineers who are too busy to think.”