For most of the past century, Americans have been the world's greatest consumers. And usually consumption has meant ownership: just before the Great Recession, the average American household owned 2.28 cars, and had more television sets than people. But these days a host of new companies are trying to disrupt the paradigm-offering the benefits of consuming without the costs of ownership. Ride-sharing companies such as Lyft, Sidecar, and, in some cities, UberX, own no cars themselves. Instead, they sign up ordinary car owners: when you need a ride, you can use their apps to find a driver near you and ask to be picked up. Many other companies are trying to cash in on what's often called "the sharing economy." Airbnb now features more than three hundred thousand listings from people making their apartments and homes available for short-term rentals. RelayRides and Getaround let you rent cars from their owners (rather than from Hertz or Avis). Boatbound offers boat rentals, Desktime office space, ParkatmyHouse parking spaces. SnapGoods makes it possible for people to borrow consumer goods from other people in their neighborhood or social network. It may not be too long before you're able to pay to sit in a stranger's living room and "share" his home theatre.