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The Atlantic: The High-Stakes Race to Rid the World of Human Drivers

Discussion in 'News' started by jgs, Dec 2, 2015.

  1. jgs

    jgs Member

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    "The race to bring driverless cars to the masses is only just beginning, but already it is a fight for the ages. The competition is fierce, secretive, and elite. It pits Apple against Google against Tesla against Uber: all titans of Silicon Valley, in many ways as enigmatic as they are revered."

    Quite telling, isn't it, that not a single traditional car company merits being mentioned in the lede?

    The High-Stakes Race to Rid the World of Human Drivers - The Atlantic
     
  2. mspohr

    mspohr Active Member

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    I found this paragraph odd:
    The amount of money at stake is potentially unprecedented, and could add up to billions of dollars per year, maybe more. “If a first-mover captures a 10 percent share of the three trillion miles [driven in the United States] per year and makes 10 cents per mile, then the annual profit is $30 billion which is on par with Apple and ExxonMobil in good years,” Burns said. “So, the potential is huge.

    Are they thinking that someone is going to earn 10 cents a mile for autonomous driving? Is anyone going to pay 10 cents extra per mile for autonomous driving (in addition to all of the other costs of the transport).
     
  3. jgs

    jgs Member

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    One of the possible endgames for autonomous vehicles is some kind of shared fleet/rental model where personal car ownership mostly ends. Presumably in that case per-mile would be one way the fleet owner might be paid. Actually, for the number of miles my family drives per year, $0.10/mile would be an absolute no-brainer, if we could do it with no compromises. By "no compromises" I mean I would click a button on my phone and within, say, two minutes a clean, comfortable autonomous vehicle shows up at my door and takes me where I want to go, even during peak times. I do not expect this to happen within the next decade, though, even if the tech was ready, there are a bunch of other business and social barriers.

    Anyway, maybe that's what the author was thinking of? (Actually, if I could ditch my cars and still have all the convenience, that would be worth considerably more than a dime a mile.)
     

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