Thursday, February 5, 2015

Driverless Cars and Disruptive Technology

Overall, I'm in favor of driverless cars. They will revolutionize the lifestyle of many disabled people once perfected.

But they will also hasten the oncoming changes in our society.

Driverless cars can pick up fares faster, safer, and cheaper than a cabbie. They will not completely eliminate taxi drivers unless and until they come with robots that can help you put your luggage in the trunk. (And some people will probably always prefer the luxury of a human driver).

And good and bad? There will be far fewer cars. In urban areas, many people are already trading in car ownership for using public transport, ride sharing and car sharing services, or just renting a car when they need one. Most cars sit around not being driven 90% of the time. Fewer cars on the road means fewer cars being built. Great for the environment. Not so great for the auto workers.

I'm starting to think driverless cars are going to be one of the things that put the coffin nails in our current economic system. Something is going to have to change.