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Transportation AI Google

Is Google CEO's "Tiny Bubble Car" Yahoo CEO's "Little Bubble Car"? 190

Posted by timothy
from the otherwise-would-have-been-huge-and-square-I-guess dept.
theodp (442580) writes "Back in 2011, then-Google VP and now-Yahoo CEO Marissa Mayer brainstormed with BMW to sketch out an idea she had for self-driving 'little bubbles' that could ease office commutes. Here's Mayer's pitch from a BMW film short: 'All I really need is a little bubble that drives itself and when it runs into something, it doesn't hurt that much...and...you know, like it doesn't actually take up that much fuel because it's so lightweight and it's good for the environment for that reason.' So, with Google's newly-built, steering wheel-less self-driving car being described as a 'tiny bubble-car', one wonders if Google CEO Larry Page's "Tiny Bubble Car" has its roots in Mayer's 'Little Bubble Car,' especially considering the striking similarity of Mayer's concept car sketch and Google's built vehicle." Seems to me there's been plenty of concept art (as well as actual tiny bubble-like cars, even if they generallly have had steering wheels) for car designers to draw on.
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Is Google CEO's "Tiny Bubble Car" Yahoo CEO's "Little Bubble Car"?

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  • by alen (225700) on Sunday June 01, 2014 @01:42PM (#47141901)

    why can't google and everyone else support public transportation?

    lobby SF and California to build some train tracks and stops at the big corporate parks to start and build out from there to the smaller towns.

    i'm all for car ownership and driving on weekends but when you have the same trip that so many people take everyday there should be a public option

  • by Anonymous Coward on Sunday June 01, 2014 @01:44PM (#47141915)

    Well, yeah. That's even in the summary. It says "then-Google VP" in the summary. Again, this is one of those stupid articles that 's carefully worded to make it look like something completely normal is actually a terrible conspiracy by Google.

    Look, if you want to make Google look bad, just point people at its search engine. That's enough. You don't have to do anything else. You certainly don't have to make up stupid conspiracies that fall apart as soon as you process the words and understand what's actually being said.

  • by Ralph Spoilsport (673134) on Sunday June 01, 2014 @01:52PM (#47141967) Journal
    Agreed. But then all these Internet Addicts would have to actually SIT NEXT TO SOMEONE!!! Eeeew! The KOOTIES!!!!

    Public transport is the answer, but the entitled class confused nature of the California Ideology squanders forward movement for the sake of narcissism. The collateral damage is massive. Example: the asshole renting a 2 BR apt at 19th and Valencia for $10,500 a month. That comes out to about $350 a day. Someone who has that kind of dosh isn't going to want to spend time rubbing shoulders with someone who pays $1000 a month to share a flat in the Sunset. It just isn't going to happen. They're both fucking peasants (one is an extremely well paid peasant) but the well paid peasant thinks he's something special. Besides, every racist knows poor people have kooties.

  • by cascadingstylesheet (140919) on Sunday June 01, 2014 @01:55PM (#47141989)

    why can't google and everyone else support public transportation?

    lobby SF and California to build some train tracks and stops at the big corporate parks to start and build out from there to the smaller towns.

    i'm all for car ownership and driving on weekends but when you have the same trip that so many people take everyday there should be a public option

    1. Freedom.

    2. Groceries.

    3. Children.

    Not necessarily in that order.

  • by afgam28 (48611) on Sunday June 01, 2014 @02:15PM (#47142107)

    All government services are based on "theft" of resources from people who don't use that government service. This includes the roads that private cars drive on, which are funded in part by gasoline taxes but mostly through non-user-pays revenue streams such as income taxes.

  • by ShanghaiBill (739463) on Sunday June 01, 2014 @02:15PM (#47142109)

    For popular journeys, mass transit is going to be considerably more efficient.

    Not true. Most public transit is not particularly efficient. Trains and buses are very efficient when they are full, but they often run partly empty. On average, they are about as efficient as two people in an average car. An efficient self-driving on-demand electric car is probably better, both economically and environmentally, and they will be more widely used because they are more convenient. Eventually, self-driving taxis will kill public transit. There will no longer be enough demand.

  • by Lumpy (12016) on Sunday June 01, 2014 @02:45PM (#47142263) Homepage

    Are you nuts?

    The SMART is hugely popular and has been so for over a decade. In europe they are one of the most common cars seen on the roads. It's the bullshit that the USA forced on it that makes it a failure in the usa. The SMART is safer than most cars made in the USA, but they had to add a lot of useless safety crap to meet US regs designed to stifle importation. Europe and Canadian safety regs are good, but US regs are designed to stifle importation of cheap cars.

    Then they did stupid shit like not importing the Diesel model that get's well over 60mpg. it sells rapidly in Canada, but you cant buy on in the USA. Maybe if the US regulations would allow a real SMART here the ones that sell for $7800 NEW in Europe they would sell like freaking hotcakes as they would be the most affordable car sold and have a market that is huge.

    Instead we have only a handful of dealers so anyone that buys one has to have it serviced 150-400 miles away. They choose to not buy one because Mercedes is stupid and will not let the cars be serviced at a standard Mercedes dealership.

    Lastly, they took so long to get it here, they got stomped on by toyota. the iQ is all the car the smart is with a dealer network to get it fixed all over the place. Plus it has a huge advantage of being built in the USA so they can side step all the roadblocks that were in front of the SMART. But the iQ is overpriced at $17,000. It's a $9,000 car and the morons at Toyota refuse to sell it as such. Instead they pile all kinds of extra crap in it to try and justify it's sky high price tag. Same problem as the Smart. Overpriced because the executives are too stupid to know how to price a tiny commuter car so that it sells like hotcakes.

IF I HAD A MINE SHAFT, I don't think I would just abandon it. There's got to be a better way. -- Jack Handley, The New Mexican, 1988.

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