Monday, March 5, 2018

"Uber, Lyft Want to Ban Personal Use of Self-Driving Cars in Urban Areas"

From ExtremeTech, Feb. 5:
Self-driving cars are expected to revolutionize the entire automotive industry. Exactly how this is going to happen has always been a matter for debate. Some pundits think we’ll stop owning cars at all, in favor of robot vehicles that arrive seamlessly if and when we need them. Others have predicted smaller (though still important) changes around issues like senior transportation, where self-driving cars could help give older people mobility options some currently lack. Uber, Lyft, and several other firms critically involved in self-driving cars have their own ideas about how to improve personal transport — and one of the biggest involves you not being allowed to drive your car at all.
In a new statement of “Shared Mobility Principles,” companies like Didi, Lyft, Uber, and Zipcar have drafted nine intelligent (if vague) proposals for developing urban plans to incorporate self-driving cars and one whopper that’s guaranteed to dominate the conversation. Numbers one through nine are well-meaning, if vague. Declaring that cities and mobility should be considered together, that cities should be designed to prioritize the needs of people, calling for efficient use of shared spaces, and calling for fair user fees are all smart ideas. But check out number 10 (emphasis original):
We support that autonomous vehicles (AVs) in dense urban areas should be operated only in shared fleets.
Due to the transformational potential of autonomous vehicle technology, it is critical that all AVs are part of shared fleets, well-regulated, and zero emission. Shared fleets can provide more affordable access to all, maximize public safety and emissions benefits, ensure that maintenance and software upgrades are managed by professionals, and actualize the promise of reductions in vehicles, parking, and congestion, in line with broader policy trends to reduce the use of personal cars in dense urban areas.
This is merely a proposal for a set of common principles, not a government standard, bill, or law.

Traffic congestion inside cities is, to be sure, a real problem, and there have been various proposals to address it, including increased reliance on mass transit and the use of congestion pricing in cities. But attempting to artificially segregate self-driving technology and turning it into the sole providence of fleet providers would effectively kill it in the individual market....MORE
"The Shared Mobility Principles for Livable Cities were developed in 2017 by Robin Chase, Zipcar co-Founder, and a consortium of leading city and transport organizations including: the C40 Cities Climate Leadership Group, ICLEI – Local Governments for Sustainability, Institute for Transportation and Development Policy, Natural Resources Defense Council, Partnership on Sustainable Low Carbon Transport (SLoCaT), Transportation for America (T4America), Rocky Mountain Institute, Shared-Use Mobility Center, and WRI Ross Center for Sustainable Cities."
Nate at Barstool Sports comments:

I Will Own a Self-Driving Car Even If Uber Tries To Stop Me
...Self-driving cars can’t come quick enough. And I’ll be motherfucked if I let UBER and LYFT stop me from getting one. The future will happen, with or without them. We went from horses to cars, and we will do it again. People thought the Internet was a fad. People used to carry around change to use pay phones. So fuck off Uber, we aren’t driving around ourselves for the rest of time, it’s just not how the world works. Bitch.
HT the story was out there: ZeroHedge.