London may ban Uber in 21 days
The Transport for London agency regulating city transit has determined that Uber drivers are violating a number of important regulations, including using someone else’s photos on their profiles, and banned drivers are opening new accounts under different names to continue driving. Uber’s SEC filings reveal that 24% of revenues come from five large metros, including London — meaning a loss of London equates to somewhere in the neighborhood of 5% of total revenues. Wired
dis-rup-shun: While regulation of transportation has always been highly political, the role of government, and purpose of regulations, is to protect the citizenry. In the Gig Economy, the regulatory roles of government are as important as ever, as ordinary citizens are turning themselves into professional drivers, hoteliers, and temporary workers with little to no certifications, training and minimal background checking. Does that not suggest the opportunity to create an app based service to train, certify and background check on-demand employees?
Spot dog robot being tested by law enforcement
Boston Dynamics’ spot robot has appeared in many videos, showing off its ability to pull heavy loads, dance, and climb stairs. The Massachusetts State Police are reviewing how such a device can be used in law enforcement. CNET
dis-rup-shun: The use of robots in law enforcement is not new, and has diffused fatal situations. One of particular note was cessation of the mass shooter in Dallas, Texas. The increasing flexibility and strength of robots, combined with ever improving Wi-Fi cameras, makes deploying robots in place of humans a reliable strategy. Expect to see law enforcement a target market for robotics, although this market will grow quietly, as the target customer does not wish for the public to understand the tools it has at its disposal.
Space pallet concept enables shipping gear to Moon
NASA has developed a concept vehicle that is essentially a platform for heavy cargo that can be released in space from a heavy rocket before positioning itself for a gentle landing and unloading. The space pallet, once safely in place, would then shut down permanently. TechCrunch
dis-rup-shun: The Moon landing program of today is using technology that seems light years ahead of the pocket-calculator power of the Apollo crafts. New challenges, however, include navigating through increasing numbers of satellites and space debris. Marrying today’s technology with environmental consciousness will likely lead to programs to clean up man made space debris, as SpaceX’s first 120 of 42,000 Starlink satellites are already annoying astronomers.
Give the gift of Wi-Fi
Wi-Fi routers and repeaters are not a very glamorous holiday gift, but a number of new technologies, including mesh network-creating routers and Wi-Fi 6 (the next version of Wi-Fi) routers are now on the market in attractive and reasonable products. Some interesting offers for massive Wi-Fi capacity include TP-Link’s Archer AX6000 and Amplifi’s Alien. For creating a mesh network to cover all of your home, try Nest Wifi, Netgear Orbi AC1200, Linksys’ Velop Tri-Band AC2200, and Razer Sila for gamers.
dis-rup-shun: Common consumer devices don’t yet support version 6 of Wi-Fi, but we can expect to see some products in 2020. Wi-Fi 6 and/or mesh networks will greatly enhance the home computing experience, as these technologies should end dead spots in large homes, and should help make Wi-Fi doorbells, that are often a long way from the home router or on the other side of metal lath, function as advertised. Between these technologies, and the arrival of 5G, connectivity woes should soon be over.