More Changes Coming for Transportation

Even as cars and commuter planes look much like they did generations ago, big changes are coming for transportation, argues Timothy B. Lee in a piece for Vox.

1 minute read

May 1, 2017, 8:00 AM PDT

By Casey Brazeal @northandclark


Google Self-Driving Car

Ed and Eddie / Flickr

In transportation, many technologies exist as concepts or in niches for a long time before they reach widespread adoption. Timothy B. Lee suggests that there's reason to expect big changes in the coming years as many of these technologies go mainstream. "According to Bloomberg, battery costs have fallen by 65 percent since 2010," Lee writes for Vox as an example. Changes in battery costs will be big drivers in changes for the overall affordability of electric vehicles.

Another transit technology that seems to be coming is delivery drones (both flying and grounded): "Rolling food delivery robots have already started to show up on the sidewalks of San Francisco and other cities." Whether these drones will be allowed to share sidewalks with people is a subject up for debate. Autonomous vehicles, which are on the minds of companies like Uber, Tesla and Google, could also change trucking, and many startups are already dedicated to this very industry. "Initially, these trucks will handle highway driving with a human driver on hand to handle unexpected situations. But, eventually, software will likely replace human drivers altogether," Lee reports.

Friday, April 28, 2017 in Vox

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