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Comment Re:The sharing of table scraps economy not viable? (Score 1) 282

So your argument is that Uber is better than a taxi company that employs serial rapists? Does that also mean that Uber will lose that accolade if they ever employ (sorry, contract) a serial rapist?

Actually, my real argument is that while Uber may be shit, taxis are also often shit. Suggesting that Uber is worse than taxis is dumb. The women I know who have been raped by taxi drivers (two of them, now) use Uber because there is at least some accountability and it's convenient.

Comment Re:The sharing of table scraps economy not viable? (Score 1) 282

Aren't the batteries expensive to replace when they wear out?

They're not cheap, but they're getting cheaper every year.

I'm just saying driving for Uber under their original/current model is unsustainable. Their drivers are thinking "hey this is better than minimum wage!" but these are people who do not understand capital amortization.

Yeah, by the time you can buy a car with poly bushes (automakers hate them like that one simple trick, because they last forever... no, but really, they pretty much do) it'll probably be self-driving. It'll be the automakers' way of reducing fleet maintenance costs — because they will own the fleets.

Comment Re:The sharing of table scraps economy not viable? (Score 1) 282

Also the drivers who run their cars into the ground in exchange for rent/grocery money. They're basically eating their cars.

Just another great place for EVs. No ICE, no transmission. Replace all the suspension bushings with polyurethane when they wear out and they should last about forever.

Comment Re:Why is my car any different than my phone? (Score 3, Insightful) 66

I mean, this is going on during the afternoon commute, so it's an easy guess the drivers ahead of me aren't actually using their Map app on the familiar ride home, and yet Maps knows when there's traffic. So, we're being watched already.

It's not unusual to use one's navigation device to provide notifications of upcoming traffic congestion, so more people may well be using their devices than you imagine.

Comment Re: Cue Automakers (Score 1) 52

The automakers have to do that. The rest of us can sell auto hacking tools with impunity as long as they have substantial non-infringing use, and our right to develop them is actually explicitly protected by law (even through reverse engineering.) So the automakers might well be prohibited from giving us the information we need to tune the vehicle, but it's legal for us to sniff the bus while they do it.

Not in California. We have a fucking stupid huge bureaucracy dedicated to making upgrades unaffordable, because the 3000 people who actively race cars are a huge threat to the environment. Fucking stupidities nirvana here where you can't buy a race cam without asking mother may I.

While I do take offense at the CARB equipment restrictions, you can have basically any kind of car you want in California so long as you build it yourself. It smogs as the engine donor. You only have to do a certain percentage of the work yourself.

Comment Why not wipe it in advance? (Score 1) 227

If you're worried about the border patrol, it seems pretty easy to know when you're approaching a border. You can just wipe the phone in advance using the built in feature to wipe the phone and return it to the factory settings.

The whole thing gets more complicated if we're assuming the police just start confiscating phones of random people without a warrant, but I'd imagine that would face a stronger 4th amendment challenge. And really, at that point, I don't think a kill switch would be good enough. I'd want manufacturers to rethink the whole security design, probably limiting the information stored on the phone in the first place.

Comment Re:Maybe, but maybe not (Score 1) 282

My past experience says that someone got fired, and that person is having a very loud, career destroying tantrum.

And the statistics say that most such complaints are valid. But here you are, FUDding the other direction. I wonder why you're so invested in that?

I will call it as I see it.

You didn't see anything, but you're quick to judge anyway.

Comment Re:Path to profitibility (Score 1) 282

Establish a user base, put the current cab system out of business then raise your prices.

Uber can't do that without winning their legal battles, and if they do that then any competitor can waltz in and do the same thing Uber did. Given Uber's past and reputation, all they have to do to be different is not be sleazy.

Comment Re:Uber may be in trouble but no self driving cars (Score 2) 282

Even auto makers are in big trouble because you will need far fewer taxis as they can service more people per vehicle.

The automakers are not collectively in any trouble at all, because someone is going to have to build these vehicles and that someone is going to be the automakers. Remember, there are literally billions of humans without mobility today. If these new types of transportation network permit more of them to have mobility, that represents a need for more vehicles. Some automakers will almost certainly fail, or at least some redundant marques, but there will continue to be a need for a large number of vehicles in the future. Also, for the foreseeable future, people with money aren't going to want to share their cars. And then there's also the possibility that as the car changes into something else that people don't actually drive themselves, it might actually change a lot. For example, we might wind up with a whole bunch of low-powered RVs tooling along at low speeds, with people reducing the square footage they have at home in exchange for more mobile area. No one is really sure what will happen next, which drives the economists nuts because it totally screws up all of these predictions.

Comment Re:As much as I dislike Uber.. (Score 1) 282

When did Starbucks become "okay"?

It's because the bar is so very low. Starbucks treats their employees well and they pay more than fair trade prices for the coffee, so they are in fact a better influence on the neighborhood and the world than plenty of small coffeeshops. Sure, your favorite $8-a-tall-coffee joint is better than they are, but they're not going to be the dominant paradigm in a world without Starbucks' burnt-ass coffee anyway.

When did Starbucks become "okay"? When did 5 corporations owning over 90% of all US media become okay? (Thanks telecommunications act of 1995.)

Bill Clinton was a business-as-usual politician, not an actual liberal.

Comment Re:Uber is pursuing the wrong thing (Score 1) 282

Their fundamental issue is how to turn their network profitable before the traditional Taxi companies are able to get their own app out there.

Some of them have apps, but they are garbage. None of them do what the Uber app does, and none of the cab drivers want it to. They're probably just as likely to fire all the drivers and go self-driving as they are to implement a useful app. They would have to change their entire business model first.

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