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Flying robo-taxis eyed for Bay Area commuters

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French inventor Frank Zapata grabbed headlines around the world this summer when he flew his hoverboard across the English channel from Pas de Calais, France, to the famous white cliffs of Dover. But Bay Area commuters may soon do Zapata one better by skimming above San Francisco Bay on autonomous, single-passenger drones being developed by a Peninsula start-up company with ties to Google. The automated drones are electrically powered, capable of vertical takeoff and landing, and would fly 10 feet above the water at 20 mph along a pre-determined flight path not subject to passenger controls. The drones' rotors are able to shift from vertical to horizontal alignment for efficient forward movement after takeoff. The company behind all this, three-year-old Kitty Hawk Corp., has personal financial backing from Google founder Larry Page, now CEO of Google's parent, Alphabet, who has long been interested in autonomous forms of transportation.


Introducing The Mindboggling Flying Taxis Of The Future

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We already have drones and increasingly autonomous cars, so it's perhaps no surprise that several companies are already working on flying taxis – also known as passenger drones and electrical vertical take-off and landing (eVTOL) aircraft. The first piloted eVTOL services are expected as early as this year, but we could see pilot-less autonomous eVTOLs soon after that. That's right; autonomous flying taxis could be a reality in your lifetime. The number of hours we used to spend sitting in traffic before the coronavirus hit is almost too depressing to think about, particularly if you live in a densely populated, congested city like Los Angeles, New York or London. Some are suggesting eVTOL services could be the answer to our traffic prayers – transporting passengers on congested city routes through the air. Meanwhile, other companies are developing eVTOLs aimed at popular intercity journeys, such as traveling from my home town of Milton Keynes to London.


At IBM's Watson lab, customers marry the power of AI with the IoT

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At about lunchtime on an unseasonably warm February day, a small commercial drone hovered alongside Highlight Tower; a striking, angular glass block soaring 126m over a suburban Autobahn on the outskirts of Munich, with equally striking views. This email address is already registered. By submitting my Email address I confirm that I have read and accepted the Terms of Use and Declaration of Consent. By submitting your personal information, you agree that TechTarget and its partners may contact you regarding relevant content, products and special offers. You also agree that your personal information may be transferred and processed in the United States, and that you have read and agree to the Terms of Use and the Privacy Policy.


At IBM's Watson lab, customers marry the power of AI with the IoT

#artificialintelligence

At about lunchtime on an unseasonably warm February day, a small commercial drone hovered alongside Highlight Tower; a striking, angular glass block soaring 126m over a suburban Autobahn on the outskirts of Munich, with equally striking views. This email address is already registered. By submitting my Email address I confirm that I have read and accepted the Terms of Use and Declaration of Consent. By submitting your personal information, you agree that TechTarget and its partners may contact you regarding relevant content, products and special offers. You also agree that your personal information may be transferred and processed in the United States, and that you have read and agree to the Terms of Use and the Privacy Policy.