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Comment Re: THX Used to mean something (Score 3, Interesting) 44

THX wasn't even a technology, it was just a spec and certification - glorified QA with a big price tag.

The reason it's not relevant now is it basically devolved to big speakers and bass since that's all anyone noticed. Current theater effort like Dolby Atmos will provide *much* better audio quality, and still plenty of volume and rumbling bass.

Comment Re:The ending comment (Score 1) 60

"Infinitely more profitable" already makes the argument moronic. So, infinite money? Awesome! Or nope, fucking stupid!

You clearly have not read ANY of the reasonable discourse on this topic. Large transit buses (ie all current buses, that are cheap, have set routes and carry 60+ people) vs taxis (that are expensive and usually carry 1-2 people) have nothing to do with it.

It's about automated microbuses that can carry 6-8 commuters, routing them in a way that they are WAY faster than trains/trainsit buses/parking private cars at a fraction of the cost.

Self-driving minibuses ARE public transportation, or as close as it will get (and the bonus it can get your to the door not blocks away). Fully public to the door transportation is not an option at this point - right of way in a city is 100's of billions - in one big chunk - to build such a thing. So the only palatable option will be to use the existing infrastructure...

Comment Re:The ending comment (Score 1) 60

Replying again since it's a totally separate point but probably more significant than my other highly significant point ;)

A taxi has to drive much farther on average to get you from point A to point B than you would have to drive to make the same journey in a car you owned and kept with you.

You must be pretty rural if you think driving is the only time/expense in a commute. In any major city, try PARKING. You can spend 30+ minutes trying to find free parking (sometimes without luck), pay $30+ to park in a garage (sometimes taking 2-3 garages to find a space), or any combination in between. None of those work out in favor of the individual private commuter.

Comment Re:The ending comment (Score 1) 60

Not if they were all linked self-driving cars taking multiple passengers as appropriate. It would be a MASSIVE reduction in traffic in that case. You did mention "Ubertopia" and GM - and that IS what both of those companies are working on right now.

The ideal self-driving car future is not a bunch of Teslas taking one passenger around, it's a fleet of mini-buses (or even expanded & cost reduced Model X's, 6-8 passengers would be plenty!) that can optimize routes near-perfectly to pick up multiple passengers while not significantly impacting the time of each passenger. You don't even need to be that good of a computer scientist to immediately understand all of the interesting optimization potential to that situation...

Comment Re:The ending comment (Score 1, Interesting) 60

It's a shame, because my Uber experiences in Europe were fantastic. The cars were spotless (a BMW 535 and a Merc C63 AMG!), the drivers eminently polite, and the rates cheaper than in the US.

I guess it's not the same for commuting/ridesharing, where you don't want to pay taxi prices... but for a tourist trying to get around it was perfect ;)

Comment Re:stupid questions for stupid customers (Score 1) 60

It then drives to the next pick-up, which during morning rush hour is more likely than not another commute from the suburbs into the city

Not sure you get how Uber works...

I know a bunch of Uber drivers, and based on the way the app works they tend to find a new passenger close to them after dropping off a fare. They may make less going in the opposite direction, or they may have to hang around "downtown" for a while doing shorter trips until they get one that is going where they want - but any Uber driver who actually makes a living on it knows the system and how to maximize their income over time. NO ONE would drive all the way back to "the suburbs" repeatedly to pick up more fares. Especially since "commute time" is a limited window.

But you can ride-pool already if you are so inclined, so there seems to be no good reason to use Uber if the goal is to reduce traffic and time wasted in traffic.

Duh, that's what UberPOOL is, an instant rideshare, without any of the hassle of dealing with the fickle schedule of any one individual driver.

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I'm still waiting for the advent of the computer science groupie.