Giant fleet of small scheduling nightmares

In tenuous link between my recent posts on automation, here and especially here, where back in November I discussed autonomous vehicles and their impact on employment. I also said: While many cities are salivating over the ability of self-driving, autonomous … Continue reading Giant fleet of small scheduling nightmares

Dystopian Future it is then

In his acceptance speech, President elect Trump said, among other things: We are going to fix our inner cities and rebuild our highways, bridges, tunnels, airports, schools, hospitals. We’re going to rebuild our infrastructure, which will become, by the way, second to none. And we will put millions of our people to work as we rebuild it. This from a man, who tweeted: The concept of global warming was created by and for the Chinese in order to make U.S. manufacturing non-competitive. — Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) November 6, 2012 I’ve no idea what to expect now from the Trump … Continue reading Dystopian Future it is then

Bring back what jobs?

Look, the jobs that are lost, are not coming back, get over it. When Trump claims he’ll bring back jobs, he either has no idea what he is talking about, or he envisions some dystopian future where Americans are more like slaves than they’ve been since, well, slaves. I will bring our jobs back to the U.S., and keep our companies from leaving. Nobody else can do it. Our economy will “sing” again. — Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) March 15, 2016 China and Mexico are not the problem, automation is. Even if Trump were able to force companies to bring … Continue reading Bring back what jobs?

The Greatest Social Challenge of our Generation — Strong Towns

This is one of the best blogs of many on the Strong Towns blog. American suburbia is only viable with heavy government subsidy and planning — It would be unaffordable otherwise. As we see the Growth Ponzi Scheme unwinding and the first decades of what journalist Alan Ehrenhalt has called The Great Inversion, Americans are experiencing a return to normal living conditions. In many ways, it’s a traumatic transition; who-moved-my-cheese on a continental economic scale. Source: The Greatest Social Challenge of our Generation — Strong Towns Continue reading The Greatest Social Challenge of our Generation — Strong Towns

Does the Austin Mayor use Cabs?

In the fallout from the withdrawal of Uber and Lyft from Austin, following a defeat on Prop-1, Mayor Adler has come up with his 7-point plan to manage the vacuum. He, along with many others are hoping that Austin is such a jewel in the Uber/Lyft crown, that they’ll soon be back, tail between their legs asking to be allowed to operate in Austin again. I’m not so sure. This farce could have been completely avoided if Austin, and by implication Mayor Adler, and more importantly his predecessor, Mayor Leffingwell, had actually been planning for the future rather than retrospectively … Continue reading Does the Austin Mayor use Cabs?

Government US style

It’s clear that many Americans view “Big government” as a bad thing, it seems though that they are OK with lots of branches of small government, that is ineffective, costly and open to misuse, and often technology challenged. Given the size of the USA, any government is going to be a big government. With over nearly 320-million people, and almost the largest country in geography in the world, most people clearly are clueless about the scale and the challenges of delivering services in what was the worlds most advanced country. Listen to this 10-second clip from NPR’s Morning Edition today, a … Continue reading Government US style

Will self driving cars save Austin from itself?

If you had 100 destinations you’d have removed some of the major bottlenecks, but we don’t. We have the Central Business District. It’s a major constraint and getting people in cars in and out of it no matter how automated the cars are will have the same fundamental problems and constraints. Anyone who says otherwise really doesn’t understand the problem. Continue reading Will self driving cars save Austin from itself?

Farewell to “alms”

I wrote to the Austin Chronicle a couple of weeks back to follow-up on their quote of the week, from departing Austin Mayor Lee Leffingwell. “It is important to remember that there are over 860,000 people living in Austin. Sometimes it can be difficult to keep this in mind when you’re facing 200 loud voices in the Council Chamber.” My observation, from being one of those 200 8-10x during Leffingwells tenancy, and addressing the dais probably 3-4 times, was So, our rail or fail Mayor Leffingwell reminds us that there are some 860,000 people in Austin, and it’s hard to … Continue reading Farewell to “alms”

DVT and the American Way

As we approach the holiday season, I am reminded to check the American Way magazine to see if they’ve updated their advice about Deep Vein Thrombosis, aka DVT. My legs are sore from Sundays race, so better safe than sorry. Looks like I’m still in with a chance to win the 100,000 award miles for my letter to the editor last month, after all they have not changed the advice. Here is what I wrote: I’m in 22a of AA 1149, I’ve been here for about 3.5 hours since boarding. The guy in the exit row seat in front, despite … Continue reading DVT and the American Way

Austin Traffic: Poor planning

So prop-1 failed, no bad rail, no gloating from me. We still have a major commuting problem. Repeat after me though, we don’t have a traffic problem. One of the problems we have, that comes from growth is so many places are having infrastructure work. Google are all over south Austin laying underground conduit for fiber optic cables, mostly though they are not the problem, apart from a half day here or there where the close off a lane. The RapidBus dedicated lanes have caused some problems downtown, but slowly people have got used to not using the bus lanes, … Continue reading Austin Traffic: Poor planning