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Comment Re:Does not create review loop (Score 1) 265

UberX works like this; I've driven for UberX for three months:

Neither driver or passanger can see each other's ratings. After a probationary number of trips, the driver gets a rolling lifetime average rating in the app, and a weekly average rating via email. Drivers and riders start out with a 5 star rating, so if you encounter a driver with a five star rating they are still on probation. I don't believe riders get a probation (Uber has never said as much) but if a passenger has a 5 star rating I find that usually means they are new to Uber.

All drivers are obligated to rate their passenger upon exit before they can log back on and continue driving for Uber. The passenger is generally unaware that they are being rated, but can see their lifetime average by logging into the site/app. I'm unaware as to any automatic cut off that would cause a passenger to be banned, though other drivers claim that the rider ratings are occasionally investigated. My lowest rated riders were in the 2.x range.

If the driver's lifetime rating falls below 4.7 that's grounds for being barred (fired) from Uber, though you can start over by taking a paid class from the company. For some drivers their rating is a source of stress, as they are driving cars leased through Uber at a rate of $800-$1600 a month, with a punitive $250-$1000 charge if they are fired.

AFAIK the rider rating isn't fully implemented yet, the drivers can't see the rider rating unless they go out of their way to check it in the app, which they can't legally do while the car is in motion to pick up the rider. Uber assures drivers that they are being kept safe from problem riders via the rider rating system.

Comment Re:What the f*$# is wrong with us? (Score 4, Interesting) 1198

Exactly. Elliot Rodger’s was a textbook psychopath, probably somewhere between ASPD and NPD (

That he had hang ups with women was a product of his brain not being capable of the normal range of human emotions, not because he was an introverted nerd.

Submission + - Artist Builds Machines that Build Machines (

justin12345 writes: "If you haven’t noticed, the intersection of digital fabrication and the arts is having a moment right now. But this is hardly anything new for Chris Bathgate, a self-taught machinist sculptor from Baltimore. Chris has dedicated the last decade of his career researching and building CNC machines out of a basement studio and creating scores of harmonious metal forms. Each successive work embodies the culmination of Chris’ experiences from learning new technology."

Comment More of a legal issue than a tech one. (Score 1) 472

Google seems to be focused on automating commuting, but really isn't the goal to eliminate accidents due to all forms of human error? That means driving while drunk, texting, tired, etc.

The technology is getting better rapidly, but until someone can legally flop wasted into their back seat, at 4 AM, shout "Take me home!" and drunk text their ex-girlfriend like they currently can in a taxi, it's not going to get much traction.

So I'd say we're less than 10 years out from a tech perspective, and n years out from a legal one.

Comment Re:That's nice... (Score 1) 79

Well then all we have to do is wrap the earth in a sheath of exotic matter that warps space-time to the point that a single second in the sheath on earth is 1000 years outside of it. Then just send out swarms of self replicating robots programmed to track down habitable planets and encase them in similar sheaths. After that build worm holes between the habitable worlds, easy-peasy!

See: (it's a great book)

Comment Re:Archer? (Score 2) 236

Actually all the ad money comes from Google. Turn off adblock, hover over an ad, right click, hit "inspect element".

MS, Apple, etc might pay Google for advertising, but I don't think I've ever seen an Apple or MS banner ad on Google (probably because as a general rule businesses don't pay for their rival's services if the don't have to).

Comment I learned a new word: (Score 1) 489

I've never seen the word "penurious" before:

adjective formal
1 extremely poor; poverty-stricken: a penurious old tramp.
characterized by poverty or need: penurious years.
2 parsimonious; mean: he was generous and hospitable in contrast to his stingy and penurious wife.

--New Oxford American Dictionary

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