Thursday, May 18, 2017

Economic Shockwaves?

Google made e-mail free.

No small feat -- and we don't even think about it anymore. Could they pull the same thing off for transportation?

Is there some kind of economic side-effect of really inexpensive portable interactive screens that we haven't thought of? I'm thinking yes. I don't know what it will be, but there will be side effects.

Autonomous transportation could create some efficiencies in transport that are staggering. Right now to try and carpool for a day to a different town with multiple stops would be extremely difficult - but if we get our transportation by uploading our desired schedule -- we could easily be matched with people going the same way we are at approximately the same time.

Would save time, energy and probably improve the social lives of those traveling.

Of course the demand for Lidar would explode...


In the near term, all those miles mean more data to capture, which feeds back into autonomous-driving programs to help make them better. In the medium-to-long term, though, once the kinks have been worked out, tech companies could choose to drive you around as a way to capture data on you and then try to sell you stuff. And that’s the part that Jonas thinks should scare Tesla investors.

“One of the biggest concerns we have about the ‘end-state’ of shared mobility from a Tesla perspective is the risk that other firms could enter the market as a competitor, offering the mobility service from, say, New York to Boston or from Santa Monica to LAX at a loss… just to get access to your time and data,”
he wrote. That model could allow Google to one day drive you around practically for free. Think what Google did for email.

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