Shortly after moving to San Francisco in October 2007, roommates and former schoolmates Brian Chesky and Joe Gebbia could not afford the rent for their loft apartment. Chesky and Gebbia came up with the idea of putting an air mattress in their living room and turning it into a bed and breakfast. The goal at first was just "to make a few bucks". In February 2008, Nathan Blecharczyk, Chesky's former roommate, joined as the Chief Technology Officer and the third co-founder of the new venture, which they named AirBed & Breakfast. They put together a website which offered short-term living quarters, breakfast, and a unique business networking opportunity for those who were unable to book a hotel in the saturated market. The site Airbedandbreakfast.com officially launched on August 11, 2008. The founders had their first customers in town in the summer of 2008, during the Industrial Design Conference held by Industrial Designers Society of America, where travelers had a hard time finding lodging in the city.
Airbnb was able to complete its entire database migration to Amazon RDS with only 15 minutes of downtime. This quick transition was very important to the fast-growing Airbnb because it did not want its community of users to be shut out of its marketplace for an extended period of time. Tobi Knaup, an engineer at Airbnb says, “Because of AWS, there has always been an easy answer (in terms of time required and cost) to scale our site.”
Airbnb features a review system in which guests and hosts can rate each other after a stay. Hosts and guests are unable to see reviews until both have submitted a review or until the window to review has closed, a system which aims to improve accuracy and objectivity by removing fears that users will receive a negative review in retaliation if they write one. However, the truthfulness and impartiality of reviews may be adversely affected by concerns of future stays because prospective hosts may refuse to host a user who generally leaves negative reviews. In addition, the company's policy requires users to forego anonymity, which may also detract from users' willingness to leave negative reviews. These factors may damage the objectivity of the review system.
As part of American Airlines’ overhaul project, Terminals 4 and 5 will be redesigned as a single 300,000-square-foot hall with bigger bathrooms, more power outlets and large windows that will allow in natural light. The overall area won’t expand much, but American Airlines officials say a reconfigured ticket counter and check-in area will reduce wait times.
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Our roots are in San Francisco, but we also have offices in Seattle along with an important and fast-growing product and technology presence in Gurgaon, India. Hotwire has the energy and pace of a startup, plus the stability and backing of the incredible Expedia Group. Our culture centers around delivering value to customers and supply partners by being passionate about building great products with the latest and greatest technologies available. We pride ourselves on our organizational transparency, a bias for action and a customer centric approach to everything we do.
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