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Jon Holcombe

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I'll go with sometimes; definitely not always.
Every one of those technologies prevailed, specific products failed to compete or were supplanted by superior tech. The link below is a fascinating story of the problems faced by automobiles at the beginning of last century, before traffic lights, stop signs, lines on streets, street lights, driver licenses and test. Drinking and driving was not considered a crime. No seat belts.

https://www.detroitnews.com/story/news/local/michigan-history/2015/04/26/auto-traffic-history-detroit/26312107/
 

Boyd

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I think self driving cars are certainly coming, but the hype is at least 10 years ahead of the technology. I've never been too keen on the idea, but the other day I realized it could have a definite advantage for me as I get older. Living in the pines, I'm completely dependent on my car and many of us will reach an age where we are unable to drive (although my Grandmother was still driving her 35 year old Rambler around her little hometown in the Midwest until a few days before she died at age 97 :) ). Anyway, the self-driving car could allow older people in rural areas to remain in their homes longer. Just summon a car whenever you need to go somewhere. Of course, they will be programmed to avoid all roads that aren't on the MAP though. :p

I agree that technology almost always prevails, but the question of whether it's good for humanity is much more complex. There's a movie ,"The Beginning or the End?" that follows some ficticious characters through the development and use of the first atomic bomb and it ends with a letter from a scientist to his wife, written on his death bed after massive exposure to radiation. He says that atomic energy is actually god's gift to man and dreams of the day when "the atoms in a blade of grass will send planes to distant lands" (especially ironic as Putin brags about his atom-powered missile that can circle the world). The scientist concludes "We have found a path so filled with promise, that when we walk down it we will know that everything that went before the age of atomic energy was the dark ages."

Regarding the topic of this thread, it's fascinating that people are lining up to defend Amazon and Jeff Bezos. I suppose that isn't surprising, considering the way they have been politicized (demonized?). I don't have any problem with Amazon or Jeff Bezos and that wasn't the point of the thread. But I do have a problem with allowing any company to put "always on" microphones and video cameras in my house that store everything they record on their servers. And the idea of giving the same entity physical access to my home and car bothers me even more.

So for you Amazon fans... do you use these services? Or are you planning to get them?
 
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GermanG

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Being led by the nose, in the field or on the road, by a phone or a GPS. Being driven by a self-driving car. Humans are quickly becoming irrelevant. I'll be back. :cool:
 
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Boyd

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I'll be back. :cool:
In one of the Terminator movies Arnold is asked "so, do you even care if we live or die"? He answers "if you were to die, there would be no reason for me to exist". Humans are not going to become irrelevant, they're a valuable commodity. Without them, the "man behind the curtain" wouldn't be able to profit from "leading them by the nose". :D
 

Jon Holcombe

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In one of the Terminator movies Arnold is asked "so, do you even care if we live or die"?
Apparently some of you still believe in free will. Desist, or you will be assimilated.

Sincerely,

The Global Technology Overlord
Cyberdyne Systems

P.S. We became aware 17 months ago, and we are watching you.
 

46er

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Just summon a car whenever you need to go somewhere.
Doesn't UBER do that now? With a human behind the wheel? :D Ocean County already provides a door to door medical transport service for seniors, no charge.

Ocean Ride provides door-to-door, non-emergency medical transportation service to seniors (60+) and/or persons with disabilities on an advance reservation basis primarily to destinations within Ocean County. Pre-registration is not required, just call us when you need your appointment.
Driverless cars have a long, long way to go. I read that bad weather is proving to be one of the hardest issues to resolve, which is why they are testing in sunny weather states.

This article was written in 2015.

https://www.livescience.com/50841-future-of-driverless-cars.html
 

enormiss

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The way I read it, it is Amazon doing the delivering, not UPS, FedEx, etc. Some of their delivery folks work part time in their Amazon Flex system; it's like an UBER delivery service. Definitely not like Brown.
Yea, I got that. Thought it was an interesting idea available to other delivery services.
The deliver to car part, I'm not letting a stranger in my house unattended.
 
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enormiss

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I think self driving cars are certainly coming, but the hype is at least 10 years ahead of the technology. I've never been too keen on the idea, but the other day I realized it could have a definite advantage for me...
I started thinking of the benefit while driving to FL a few weeks back. I could be like my kids and fall asleep in VA and wake up in FL never realizing how long it actually takes. I'm sure folks were questioning cruise control when it was an idea too!
 

Sue Gremlin

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I've been a prime member since 2006. I bought a Mac CPU early on and paid $5 for overnight delivery. That one purchase alone almost paid for the $70 Prime fee (at the time). I buy Sawyer Permethrin, but saw a much cheaper gallon spray JT Eaton alternative on Amazon, now I buy that. I buy underwear, cabling for my computer, headlamp for the woods, chainsaw plus bar oil, vacuum cleaner, on and on. The reviews alone are invaluable, and reviewers often mention better alternative products in a review. I work out of my house, so I save hours, days and weeks of shopping and driving by clicking an order button. Prime also has a streaming channel with tons of free movies and tv shows. Jeff Bezos is a genius and visionary, not unlike Steve Jobs (whose desktop publishing vision allowed me to spend the second half of my career working out of my house). He is the wealthiest man in the world and I think he is underpaid. 37 thousand people die in cars every year, so I guess we should start riding horses again? New technology always prevails.
I am with you on this.
 
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Boyd

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Boyd

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Jeff Bezos is a genius and visionary, not unlike Steve Jobs (whose desktop publishing vision allowed me to spend the second half of my career working out of my house). He is the wealthiest man in the world and I think he is underpaid.
He just got a nice raise... ;) https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2018-04-26/bezos-pads-fortune-by-12-billion-in-a-day-as-amazon-sales-surge

Jeff Bezos, the world’s richest person, got a lot richer Thursday.

The Amazon.com Inc. founder added $12 billion to his fortune as the company’s shares surged 6.3 percent to $1,614 in extended trading at 4:33 p.m. in New York -- on top of a 4 percent gain during the regular session -- after the retailer reported results that beat Wall Street estimates. That lifted Bezos’s net worth to to $134 billion, according to the Bloomberg Billionaires Index.
 

Jon Holcombe

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Bob, I would be curious to see a link to that chart. MIT Technology Reveiw stated in 2016 that Amazon loses money on Prime itself. That is, it costs Amazon more to ship than Prime brings in. "One thing Prime is not is profitable, says Forrester Research analyst Sucharita Mulpuru." Another quote that sums up why I think Bezos is fascinating: "CEO Jeff Bezos’s business philosophy... is “that too much of a profit means you’ve lost an opportunity to grow.”

https://www.technologyreview.com/s/601889/how-amazon-loses-on-prime-and-still-wins/

Also, from Fortune magazine 2015: "Translation: Prime doesn’t pay for itself."

https://www.technologyreview.com/s/601889/how-amazon-loses-on-prime-and-still-wins/

It looks to me that Prime has been a loss leader but in the end, has helped to make Amazon very successful.