Uber, Lyft and the nitpickers of Mobility

This week ends with a headline of the Austin Busines Journal (Michael Theis)


„Lyft says bags already packed to leave town if Prop. 1 fails“

So what. To be honest, I like the idea of the Free Market. I even like disruption, automatisation (in certain limits). But I am fucked up by this deadly serious nitpickers who are mortally offended, when society tells them that all the beans are not exclusively for them and their sportscars, flats and French winery.

For me this is something like morning dawn. Can anybody remember we had a 20 year lasting discussion what suatainibility is and can be for everydays life?

Do you remember how proud we mobility guys have been on the light rail renaissance in the US, in Asia and on the BRT revolution in South America?

What I want to say is, there was more on the table than all this stupid sharing economy, consuming everything society has designed, built and maintained for decades.

Time to talk about politics and people

There is more than the idea, that proven structures and responsibility for more than quick big money.

Towns should stand up against blackmailing and fraud, like Berlin did it with AirBnB

We don’t want to make business with enterprises refusing tests, that their employees are drug free, non criminal and refuse to financially treat them as employees. Understood Lyft and Uber?

We’ll see how things to. Uber, Lyft and Co will be successful wherever economy of scale is possible, the rest we pay with our taxes. And then?

Automated for the people?

Another thing is automated driving or autonomous cars (AC). Singapore will start with autonomous taxis in 2017
, Lyft and GM also
but with electric cars. Sounds good. Not to forget autonomous bikes (Zeitgeist)

What makes me nervous is the fact, that communities and politicians are still sleeping in the cuckoo-clock.

Yes, AC. can improve transport safety. That’s why the new lobby, dubbed The Self-Driving Coalition for Safer Streets, will be led by David Strickland, long-time safety watchdog who was formerly the head of the U.S. National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA).

Yes, we can even do more mails in an AC than today in a car. So what. Burnout is just around the corner if we don’t think about a post work, post capitalism society.
Any doubts? Real wages for most Americans haven’t increased in 40 years. just one example.

But what about liveable cities? How many cars can people bear? How much green space will we need in the future of almost 10 bion people? No questions on the floor. Just silence and technology for even more profits. So sad and without any comparison in history. Total bean counting (TBC) as the only vision before it gets really cold in society.

The same damage wherever we have a look.

Internet of things and smart homes? Have a look at googles pains with nest and tados success collecting money.
It’s clear that we can live without this gadgets. It’s unclear if Industry can force us (e.g. via standardisation) to buy these things. Are they beneficial? We’ll see. I doubt.

Let the market device, not monopolists

Just remember Windows 3.1. and the ashaming little progress Microsoft made in the last 20 years. No one really needs Windows 10. It’s brute force to stop supply for clients just to sell more of the (really bad) same and fight against Linux and open source in the public sector of Bavaria and Vienna, Austria (

Wienux open source).
But even here the old models do not work anymore, as Microsoft is taking open source serious to sustain earnings.

Revolution will eat it’s kids once more

In my opinion, all this revolutions starting with Industry 4.0, ending with Augmented reality and Artificial Intelligence will come but not the way we think now.
People in the future won’t have much money. They will say up sharing economy using clever open source tools to share food and time, cars and books.
They will definitively not raise their consume to pay the Lamborghini of a 25 year old Harvard Bastard.

The will make a pause and leave Facebook and join regional platforms to know more about life around them.

They will have autonomous cars, but only 10% of today’s cars and of today’s parking space.
States will have a look on tax contribution of „enterprises“ like lyft and uber.

Innovation welcome but with an improvement of our lifes

Let’s see if they can compete then. If they can, I will be glad as I really like progress.
I like my smart phone, I like my car, the Viennese public transit system and the fact that my kid has a 99.99% Chance to become 100 years old.
We live in amazing times that have never been and maybe – After oil runs out – will never be.
Whatever will come, let’s have our eyes on technology as a means of living quality. Be aware, be progressive, be a citizen of tomorrow.

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