With the looming advent of the age of autonomous cars comes many questions. Foremost among them: Can they deliver pizza? That's what Domino's and Ford will try to find out in the coming weeks when they deploy a jointly-developed self-driving car into the streets of Ann Arbor, Mich., that's equipped with a heated compartment hidden behind the passenger side rear window that rolls down and dishes out orders when a customer enters an access code into a tablet installed on the side of the vehicle. Whether its people or pizza, the question remains: What do you give a robot for a tip?
There may be no need to tip your Lyft driver in Boston later this year -- because there may not be a driver. The ride-hailing company said Friday it will introduce driverless cars to its Beantown fleet later this year -- before expanding the program to other cities. Driverless cars will be chosen for particular customers by Lyft depending on traffic, weather, route and time of day, the company said. As the driverless car program expands and becomes more battle tested -- and accepted by passengers -- Lyft said it will still have a need for "drivers."
Uber CEO Travis Kalanick has resigned from the ride-sharing service he co-founded, another twist in a rough year for the company. There's also a court battle stemming from allegations that Uber stole trade secrets from Waymo, Alphabet's (GOOGL) self-driving car development company. Waymo alleges that Anthony Levandowski - a former top manager for Google's self-driving car project - stole pivotal technology from Google before leaving to run Uber's self-driving car division. Uber's board releases Holder's recommendations, which include removing some of Kalanick's responsibilities and replacing Uber's chairman and founder, Garrett Camp, with an independent chairman.
The Atlanta-based airline has recently teamed up with Tinder to transform the exterior of Brooklyn building into a "dating wall" covered in worldly murals depicting nine different Delta destinations. According to a press release, the idea is for Brooklynites to snap photos near the murals, upload them to their dating profiles, and trick unsuspecting Tinder dates into thinking they're more well-traveled than they actually are. "So this summer, Delta and Tinder are offering New York singles an opportunity to snap profile pictures that will make you look like a jet-setter via a series of painted walls on display on Wythe Avenue in Williamsburg, Brooklyn." The airline has also placed another large mural -- the second in its Painted Wall Series -- a few blocks away at the site of Brooklyn's weekly Smorgasburg food festival.
VW brand Chairman Herbert Diess has confirmed to Auto Express that a model based on the electric I.D. Buzz features a battery pack mounted flat in the floor, Tesla Model X-style, that VW says is good for 270 miles of range and is equipped with a wireless charging system that can deliver an 80 percent charge in just 30 minutes. Buzz features a highly configurable interior, with seats that can be turned into tables and beds, and front chairs that can be rotated to face the back. That's because it was designed with fully-autonomous driving capabilities in mind, something VW hopes to add by as early as 2025.
New York City's entire taxi fleet -- nearly 13,250 vehicles -- could be replaced by just 3,000 ridesharing cars if these services were optimized, according to a new study from the Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Laboratory (CSAIL) at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT). CSAIL's Daniela Rus and her team created an algorithm that crunched data from three million New York City taxi rides, calculating routes and schedules for two-person, four-person, and ten-person vehicles. The results showed that 3,000 four-person cabs could help handle 98 percent of the City's demand (with a waiting time of 2.3 minutes), while 3,000 two-person cabs could handle 94 percent and just 2,000 ten-person vehicles could handle 95 percent. "To our knowledge, this is the first time that scientists have been able to experimentally quantify the trade-off between fleet size, capacity, waiting time, travel delay, and operational costs for a range of vehicles, from taxis to vans and shuttles," Rus said in a press release.