Neil deGrasse Tyson investigates the fast-rising world of self-driving cars with former VP of R&D at GM and Mobility Consultant for Google, Inc. Larry Burns, Wired magazine transportation editor Alex Davies, and comic co-host Chuck Nice.NOTE: StarTalk All-Access subscribers can watch or listen to this entire episode commercial-free. Find out more at https://www.startalkradio.net/startalk-all-access/
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This is an unofficial transcript meant for reference. Accuracy is not guaranteed.
Skip the commercials support star talk on patriarch to listen to every episode, Commercial free, secrets in industries leaving us with many questions to be answered. We find ourselves searching for those answers as the very fabric of space science and society are converging here. For the first time, what what are you recently, the domain, the brain tat glimpse into. Graham all south ass do when they get lab, apply
You start your host near the rest. I sent you a personal astrophysicist. I got with me today, as my committee covers jackknife. We could have you jerk, someone's gonna, be here, sweetener, Chuck NICE Comic in and you get your bad boy, sometimes out there like to kind of disrupt the world with my tweets retreats powers for the power and always good to have you today is a topic. I've long wanted to have on it. Really gives an exploration of self driving cars wow you're. Are they where they been widow going? Ok right, let me ask you before you get until Shell, because since your fascinated by this, are you an advocate of some? drive a car, I you know. Yes, do you like to drive now I've driven with you, so I'm gonna say that you, you are a promise
so I dont long to get behind the wheel. I think you like it when you We all know this five, but I don't like you know, walk by the driver magazines and have them call to me come back and look at the centerfold of the Ferrari Centerfold, not that guy, ok, ok, cause, I'm! God is because I'm urban writing and urban cars, a liability right on an asset, and you know what a centre for really is for the purpose and why they were invented. You grow up in the Bronx. You know what a centerfold is supposed to. Look like an area is not at all. I get so interesting to me. Is that of course such drive a car would, I think, benefit city people, the most ok about it right and how we gonNa Parker Car. How much does it cost to park are one of the great measures of the cost of living in the city couple.
Go was when the monthly parking cost yet lingered garage costs arise awfully DR past the monthly to bed, room home rental and unite in the United States S. So let's just said that up so any I saw it with my interview with Larry Burns, Lebruns used to be with GM, and I was advising Google caddies thought about this a long time. But again, I can't take this alone causes out of this item. I can feel house right where we have so we ve got Alex Davies you're on video, Alex, welcome, having the excellent, so you transportation, editor Wired Magazine, that's correct, that's a thing who would have thought! Well, I mean transportation. It's not only crucially important to just about everybody. Everybody moves one way or another by all. These things are changing at such a rapid pace that
about a year and a half ago we decided that transportation needed its own section. So here we are always cool, and so you- and so these are wired dot com. Where you report this, ok, we'll excellent, so the future has arrived. I think I mean like its or, if not has arrived. Yet it's it's in the vestibule it hasn't arrived, then Google has the drumming Amazon has the drone on its way, and so I just don't know Larry Burns, which is my featured interview today. I interviewed him, maybe a few months ago, ok at when he came to my office, and so that's what we slicing that in so he's he's a total advocate of this new era right and he wants to reinvent everything. The entire system top to bottom can't pick up my interview there and see where it takes us Array when you think about the roadway transportation industry, the history of a girl bans events, the first patent, because first PAN Forget clean power automobile eighteen. Eighty six and I
contained commands Mercedes Benz, then I would contender. If someone dug up a one thousand nine hundred vintage car and then dug up a two thousand vintage car under the dna analysis on those same dna mechanically variables oil emerge a power by a combined engine mechanically, confer personally gasoline and driven by a person, and the price pretty much independently and sound, with steering wheel an area and saw my balls at the time required. Nor when I became out of GM research and development to ninety eight, he asked me a rather interesting question: the lower? If you're going to invent the automobile today rather than a hundred years ago, what would you do different to me. That was not a question about anyone. Technology was a question about how you deliver the value that comes with from the free of owning on operating a car? So this was a question that could be answered with a white
Do I put about ran up, make an electric drive. Really? How do you preserve a freedom that people get from being able to go where they want to when they want to buy a car. You revolt outside of facts, which are one point, two million tell him he's a year worldwide, which was up a democrat scale, not include pedestrian, Austrians, motorcyclists some any kind of roadway fatality, but then our dependence on oil, cop climate change concerns thought about reinventing the automobile. It was really reinventing the entire system and No dna. The surface was really electrically driven with the first sources of energy cars that are connected, communicating with e Then, along the roadway for importing cars, I could drive themselves also the ability to tailor resign, the car, which is the pathway to make another. Might put all of those together connected coordinated, share, driverless,
you got. A german dna, indifferent DNA and you get a different experience for people so Alex. Does your sense of the future self driving cars match his sort of global redefinition? Of what life with a drive a car would be absolutely- and I think it's interesting to see that such as people like Larry to have left places like GM too to work with the Google and Yahoo types. It's the big automakers themselves are saying that this technology is finally on the cusp happening in its time to really rethink we move around, but they wanted to be automakers we're not first out of the box, where they being reactive to these more innovative, more nimble companies in doing so
yes, I know I mean they would certainly say no anytime. You talk to GM or forty like well. This is pretty new to you and they say well we're in the dark, but grand challenges back in the early two. Thousands were a lot of this work started, but I think you have to give a lot of credit to Google in particular for putting a fire. Or under them in really advancing. The idea of a fully autonomous subtracted sought are all the driver was cars on the roads today, just experimental. Yes, there are no yeah. Basically there a couple in a number of doing it
thing in Pittsburgh and inheritance, our it's actually picking up passengers, but it still very much an experimental cards got engineers up front and they're trying to figure out how well all this is working and had a really make it work. So back in two thousand and ten GM unveiled like a concept car was recalled, the envy yes autonomous, electric smart car for urban environments right and so with pick up my interview with Larry Burns and see what he tells us about that we came up with some way. As we develop a vehicle com, envy envy for electrically network vehicle? And there was the start of the sitting. I world exports. So this isn't it first, imbalance, balance, machine and developers of the subway took their trend transport widened it or power in it and they went to, groundwater rocking gliding share, monitor down their put a role, cage rounded in six weeks ahead. This thing running
We welcome and I are driving around in a warehouse, Sure in the middle of the winter is amazingly off ass. They put it together, so we cases, whole vision, interesting I world exports and When I hear what they call the smart car on the road, I think of as the two cedar contest don't leave off all the rest were not neither unity insult cousin only ways of norms. Fifty pounds you ve got one fourth, the mass so that waste material, oh, by the way, when a new Yorker seized the smart car there, not thinking, oh, how fuel efficient! well, we you can where anything else handed round. Anything else handed round. It is the new Yorker shared at it would never get part, because when that New Yorker gets out of the car, it goes and picks up someone else it doesnt goal park this away you
I do if you're gonna have a vehicle moving around you like ten you'd ever you lie seventy five percent of the time that five percent of the time, which offers is what your city taxis, do that that, in principle it captures some of this. This fact the problem with the taxi those they have six tenths of a mile driven, Sir to pick up the next person for every mile. They drive with the person on it. If you have a shared view, consistent in you, use wireless connectivity communications to connect vehicles with with customers like Wilbur. Does you can take that sense of a mile down two point: five miles: five, one hundreds of miles the calculation regional levels, and we are convinced we have a mobility system that evolving based on driverless shared vehicles, Taylor to two people that can take the ATA Parker cost. Travelling and only in an automobile plus parking of seventy five cents, a mile we can take that below twenty cents, a mile.
Of you your time back. If you make me an income in the United States, which is twenty five dollars an hour. That's the fifty percent hell I'll come and you move it When you five miles an hour, your time is worth a dollar a mile. We're on a world of a diamond calculated that yes, anything you don't care nowhere in the world over dollar. Seventy five, a mile for the typical car owner, dropping the twenty five cents. Americans travelled Petroleum miles a year. If you can say just tell me through ten cents that have a light here. Hell sense on three trial, will you know that guy got there when I got really must have a wider sense on three Troy miles a year? A couple bar: that's three hundred billion dollars here I just love that you will take drive
a car here on earth and find a way to related to the cosmos so Alex. I think most people who are new bees in this are thinking I will buy and own self driving cars are not thinking that the car get shared. So would you agree with this vision that this is how it's going to come to us out of the box, or is there some adjustment pains, you think we'll have to go to Lula. I think when you're talking about full autonomy, the car that shared that you never drive in other Google pod car that doesn't even have a steering wheel or petals that car is gonna, be shared. So you get
vision of shared autonomy, which works and part of that is a technical limitation of these cars. Is people think that within three four years they can make a fully self driving car, but not one that can drive anywhere handle any conditions. They think that you start by making a cars capability is like this, but that can only drive in this biggest space. That's why Google's testing concern cities? That's why goober assessing in downtown Pittsburgh and slowly expanding from their. So the shared thing in set geographic areas really make sense. So does this envy concept car is that stall I've cause ease?
If he's recalling that from back in two thousand and ten, I presume we move beyond that by now. Is that correct? I think, we're beyond that and when she M talks about self driving cars, what they're using to test that technology right now is the new Chevy bolt the Baltic Sea. That's the first electric car. They can do two hundred miles on a single range and cost around, like thirty five thousand the bolt or the vault, the bolt with a b bolt yes, vote like the dog like the dog, that's why they change the name That was a bold tv right now because I feel like maybe they made a mistake in their cars almost the seventh day, so now you're right, they made a mistake, as I'm still confuse is the vault. Still around
The vote is that still around fault is still around, they actually does, but at a new version of it last year. It's really good. Oh, I just think is great. We have two leading electric cars named after physicists. Yes, ok, there's so there's Alexandra Volta Alta, after whom we named this unit of electromagnetic Force, Ramadan Electromagnetic Potential, the vault, and then you have, of course, the Tesla right, Nikola Tesla, that's cool! It's cool, just think I would get physicist on cars does good, it's very clear: even electric trucks, called Nikola Truck company called Niccolo Egg sort out we're going to first name Anna's last year. It will use middle name, is Mama's name tracks, so it's rejoined. My error, you with Larry Birds, wait a touch of the talk about the economic implications and consequences of the shift in our culture really and who's gonna have a job and who is not with check it out.
It has the potential only impact the automobile industry, but the energy industry, the insurance industry, the retail industry. And how we consume food, the educated ourselves and others and is pretty exciting? this all the rosy story. Now, there's a lot of jobs tied to these industries and I've talked about and out of notes? Look the economic implications of suddenly not meeting drivers in vehicles and the huge number of jobs are tied to that, so I'm just like in the future innovation always has been there's going to be new solutions. Other gonna be adopted. The world's gonna have a chance. Think of you were in the horse industry back before the car was invented. A new grew hey. Are you dead horse shoes or you had bombs? Are you clean up? After horses, the horseless carriage comes along places all about industry.
Were entering, and thirdly, the proverbial buddy with. How do you make body whips? Yeah, more is in place and the catalogue he asked by now, but when impressed me, what impressed me a hundred and ten years ago was how rapidly ass we transition from forces too. To force was carriages because resources for ten thousand years? This? If there's anything, then should it could have had inertia to know change. It would be the horses one. Eighty six carbons gets the pen. Thank you. No three racial Jackson dries across the United States. By the early nineteen hundreds Henry Ford hit the assembly line concept and by the nineteen teens
is building a car that his workers can afford to buy their often running. In thirty years an entire industry basically goes obsolete. It does so going forward. You see this autonomous car transition having as rapidly as was the transition to cars and offers absolutely, I think, is going to happen very fast. I think the biggest risk in coming come it is in this industry can make is to assume, is gonna take longer than is actually going take wow so Alex. It seems to me that a change can happen not simply because you have good pr people, but because it has significant economic benefit to those who want to make the change. Then you make the change overnight. It's a it's a business calculation, but the people who would lose their jobs
about eight. How does this are you ready for that? But it in your column? How do you have you talk, thought about this: how to transition this entire community of people? I heard yesterday yesterday that nearly ten percent of all jobs right or drivers right people drive trucks, taxis, aims and most of them on a man right but trained here. Most of them are men and gone. So what's what had it? How do you deal with its debts? not really clear yet, but it is a lot to say. That's not my problem have been re, vows will relay meal. We hear at wire, don't give a damn about Karla where that is their problem, where you began that sends out certain there was going to go there sorry Alex there's something like three million truckers in the United States and in one sense it's a really good job, because it's one of the few jobs. Second
Thank you good money. Without anything more than a high school format a commercial driver's license and it is going to be stressful on a large part of the economy. When those job start going away, I think that'll happen gradually, and if you talk to people like dinosaur and follow, the companies had also make trucks and they're all working on autonomous trucks, because they see really great economic benefits there almost right away, but it's not really clear. What's gonna happen to those workers, I think you know, like Larry, said something: that's happened throughout time images growing here, the different still is there. You know like when you see buggy whips when you are in your interview. The thing is that buggy whips found a home in the dominatrix industry
that will not happen with drivers. If you have you have autonomous vehicles, there is no need for a driver anywhere. So when we combat We gonna tackled issues like traffic, and accidents in fatalities and other things that are self driving car. My get involved in whose who we call when that happens, starts secret for you. When I consider singing all of the ads on this shell, just one way to get out a hearing there go to patriarch arms last started talk and where does at the five dollar level or higher to listen. The star talk ad free.
You can download all current episodes into your favorite podcast player and never, I hear another commercial on star talk ever again. You will definitely not have to hear me saying if you support us at patriarch dot coms. Last our talk, radio, I mean I'm just thinking I mean just SAM. This is start You start talking restoration, jug, nice right to my left, sir. You we were in an Einstein teacher today. Did you feel, and so my stone is my spirit. Animal is your spirit adviser. Do you spur animal maids or animals
That's a beautiful thing! We're featuring my interview with Larry Burns who's, a self driving car consultant, fascinating. Google has deep history in the automotive. History is thought of as an engineer, so he's got the engineer sense of the world with a calculate everything, and I had to ask him: he came by my office several months ago. It's oldwit sliding and clips from that interview. So I to ask about access somewhat, could lead to fatalities when no bodies behind the wheel, that's an expression, who's buying the we re exactly nobody again and we meant to women are down on paper at sight on purpose. So, let's check out what he says: How does this change the legal ramifications of highway done now hugely important question, though ethics behind this legal. Toby I not as a very important part of the story because, as I said,
if I get on the road drunk, it's easy to point blame there legally, but if everyone is completely sober and they get in an autonomous vehicle and your software ends up killing them holy shit centres that those are banner headlines and without anyone sang but look people. Twenty nine thousand people didn't I thus here no one is gonna, be known, pays attention to who doesn't die with, but there's a fascinating analogy to that. That's the history of vaccines. Flu vaccines were being developed as a good thing because people die from the flu and the producers of those vaccines were concerned. Someone could have allergic reaction to my vaccine and die and I'm gonna be held accountable for their people are concerned about the flu vaccine because of took it. They may have a reaction and die, but it's a good thing. If I get them,
who shot? Not only do I not get the flu I'm not going to give it to. You said the public goods are the governments that damn crater was called the national, a vaccine Andrey Compensation Programme, twenty five, sounds of our resolution goes under this fund and I billowy protection for the manufacturer, him for the person I get injured from the vaccine comes from the fund. So I think it's a good thing if we go from thirty five thousand fatalities down to a thousand. It is, I would hate to vary the last year or even those I'd hate to think that manufacturers won't go down that road, because there are concerned about your scenario that the one time the software doesn't work, it causes someone to die we're going after work, for that is the society You know what I think I have known. You will learn pass the thousand well understand those fatalities well and also about nine hundred to five they will get all the fatalities on the system got out.
Davies on video Alex from wire dot com you're the transportation guru with butchered title actual title would be editor, but I felt it would go gurus. The real value of the golden rule so Alex is there. Could you update us on what should we all know that there have been some driving cars in in test modes out there? have there been any injuries are fatalities so far the there's been won, reality so far in the United States that we know of an hours in a Tesla self driving a car. So it's that the full autonomy that people like Goober and Google are chasing. What Tesla has is called auto pilot, where it's a car that once you get on the highway or any place with lay lines that doesn't have intersect Hence the car can stand its own lane and use radars to detect other cars and stay a safe distance from them, and
out a year and a half ago now in Florida, man was driving in his Tesla in auto pilot mode when a truck was turning across the highway and the Tesla DIN slow down at all and slammed into the truck any it killed the occupant and that caused something of a purer because people like this, the first self driving car death- and there have been few at Once- Set happens, you're going to gear people away from the technology that didn't really happen. Ultimately and the U S: D, o t investigators looked into the accident departments. Realisation here gather department, transportation, said: ok, we're gonna. Look at this. They invest yet the accident. They ultimately said that it wasn't else's fault. Tesla still went back and tried to revamp They said it wasn't. Teslas fall. If I recall correctly, they said it wasn't teslas fault, because the car was not. The purpose of the programme was not to have the card
try view it was to aid in you driving the car. Therefore, you are still considered the driver of the car, which means that anything happens is ultimately your responsibility. So it's kind of a technical, like it at its low but of a technicality, because even though there, in other words the guy, was me using the car, because he was in the back seat, taken a map or whatever, and he should have been driving it. Let's get to. How did this fail so? the tests. I never really revealed exactly what happened, but the idea that version of the car use the combination of cameras and radars, and mostly it was really dependent on cameras also to detect obstacles in front of it. That way to break for and would seem to happen here, or there is a very great day and was a white truck, and the theory is that the Teslas camera had troubled distinguishing that truck from the cloudy sky, and so it didn't stop so then Tessa went back it revamp
self driving systemic tweaked it to use more cameras, more radars and to hopefully offer a better blend of sensor technology. So, just when I thought we had discussed everything that matters with self driving cars here, there's more! Oh, yes, my interview with Larry Burns check it out What happens to traffic in the world of an autonomous vehicles? That's a threat I think, as a rule, important concern. The reason you have traffic congestion is there's more people who want to use the road than their supply for the road and because of that the young the traffic backs up? What is it then? the term impacts on linearly your goal. The traffic moving smoothly and also on his came out. I can you get a traffic jam with our time. Is vehicles communicating with
other actually spacing employing together you're, going to be able to get much more throughput on those roads. When you get the crash of the system, you're going to go to get more through every morning is crash, but next time you're driving on unexpressed, we watch the people around you, the current us. You will pass on getting front later on your path occurring in from early runs on also passed both of you, you ve gone twenty. I also get to that point. All three cars are the same spots. All that lane changing isn't any lotta guy. Big over the road funds can slow down I think that we may be able to organise the freight traffic in a single lane with up spacing or headway, is between the trucks Ro Dynamics and fuel economy, reliving drivers would basically draft off the previous Tirana and then those parking in Manhattan. I've heard I'm not sure it's true I have been validated those that I've heard, that twenty percent of the MILES room by Manhattan Cars in Manhattan are people cruising around. Looking for a place to put flesh, you ve got the street sign parking,
and we may be able to even our lives in such a way that those delivery truck so block up. A stranger and Darwin, maybe deliver a night. Because I just works with our overall business model, because its autonomous, perhaps there's a lot of ways to get a lot more people moving on the roads are already exists. Alex it's, you have a ranking of which cities in the country have the worst traffic, not off hand by The last I saw was allay San Francisco. New York Atlanta has terrible trafficking, its usual suspects yeah. I was happy to do that calculate how much we lose in productivity by being in traffic. I think about all the time I'm sit and wait to get through it all booth and there's. You know
It opens up to date. Data, however, may lanes I'm looking to all these people and I'm thinkin. We could be out with our family with our kids at the job, it's billions of dollars, and this is a number of pulling off the top of my head. I think this average Angeleno spends like cheese dozens of ours stuck in traffic every year, and you think about the time they could be spending at home or the time they could be spending working and if, in a self, driving cars, Even if you can't get rid of the traffic right away. At least you could spend that time working their sleeping with doing whatever you want I'll now. I just felt now down against of travel guys altogether now, because I gotta work now a similar and do my work that'll be expected, I actually also my collapse, the audio book industry. Oh my goodness, that's right about that! That's! When people make you a that time to listen to their audio books? That's right right and so do spent much time thinking about traffic flow.
And Rubberneck Gang, and all these other elements that that urban planners have to think about because self driving we get rid of it would eliminate Rubberneck. There's no Rubberneck car doesn't give a damn. That's exactly as metaphorically you're mad at the car you. I want to see the kind of all blue flashing lights. Have a closer look at that's only because cars not black, the blues last, oh, my god, what we good, if you, if the soldier every car,
had a rubber netting mode where it got closer to the accidents, so that you could say, oh you can't say, would you like to see the accident that so Alex? What's your take on the solution to traffic? Do you see that is fundamentally built into the solution that involves Rivah self driving cars? I think it is and because, as you noted things like human error, accidents, rubber nagging all that stuff that leads to a lot of traffic by dont, think that once you put one or two self driving cars on the road, the problems fix that could actually get worse. In the short, when you have self driving cars mixed in with humans, because you're still going to have enough human error to clog things up, and you really need a much higher percentage of market penetration to really start making. The difference on highways that stuff that Larry was talking about
but when I read I just read this and it may have been a wired magazine as a matter of fact Alex Dad in the beginning of self driving cars being introduced into onto the roadways there. The self driving cars, maybe more frustrating to those passengers because they will defer to the regular drivers, because the look and say guys, anyhow that guy girl. So you'll, be able to bully them right. So here here's how that actually came to pass. We might have read the same article. Can't you come to a Fourways stops, I guess ok now the rule is the Cartier right is the right of way, provided everybody stopped, but suppose you come to the fore. We stop site, but you do a California stop yeah you slow down, but you didn't actually stop right and you ended self driving cars are waiting for you to stop, because it knows you moving one centimeter
per hour examined still move gotta, wait for that. Gotta stop rest, so that we can then do the four way, stop sign rule Ray and then in the southern corridor. Sittin here all day and all day, cause again bullied by its at this is a scenario right Alex. It's a real scenario. This is happening to Google engineers and the early days. They were just sitting there at four way stops and ultimately their solution was to program their car to be a little bit more So what does what I can do now is that I am driving
We should have started programming because his yes I'll get a fight. They re. Both the council brought your cell traffic over here and already ass, though so there's another issue that came up in my conversation with Larry was finer without his check it out one of the people, just like to drive the other people who love to write horses equestrian horse racing in the hall then the stray has gone away completely and it's ok to ride horses and it's gonna be ok for people who want to drive that's great and I know one thing to you: you can try that's the last thing I have ever try to apply here that we can impose on them something that they can drive a lot of these people,
DR on highway, one in California and a beautiful sunny day where there is no traffic and curving mountain roads, and it is through the throw the road over. There is threatened the angels trafficker Detroit Traffic in New York City traffic. That is not enjoyable and presumably most people drive as a utility another life now as a model for entertainment, most of them, Are you? Yes, I thought so no one wants to take wages. They know until courses away is Alex you I gave him, you agree with that that they began to get rid of cars. People love their cars. People who love their cars love their cars. People do, I think, there's gonna be a nice little boom. In the race track business somewhere, where you can go where you can safely drive as fast as you. Why once and I do think driving will never be illegal, I do see a world in which city saying this is a self driving zone. If you want to go,
in here in a car that car has to be autonomous for safety and for traffic recent pork, the car at the border, you gonna, do unauthorized that drive a car. Come our Jacqueline LAO out. That's a mean that sounds like an awful place to live. I'm sorry, sir. I love driving when we come back we're going to get into the drones in shopping with autonomous delivery systems. I might add that it sounded like the most awesome shopping trip ever where a drone goes with you. Go shopping and then drops a bomb on the more you don't mean that kind of drugs, the unknown, but the military draw one starts
continues more self driving cars and autonomous sends misty in a way that allows anywhere you as it is. Starter we're back on startup today's topic, self, driving home automation and objections on it.
As you self driving cars I just jack. We got our online Alex from Wired magazine. So be sure my interview with Larry Burns, who is an advisor to Google on autonomous vehicles, and he says he thinks deeply about every dimension of this question in ways I didn't even know people fought before and it's great time as a great conversation with him, and so what we got into autonomous delivery vehicles yeah and what the hell that would change a whole other industry. Let's check it out, is about goods move in his well. You know dominoes has created a robotic unit, call drew tomorrow's pizza deliveries created through the dominoes robotic unit for while our view other that can operate and deliver hot and cold food, your home robotics early, that's kind need that
I think that's better than maybe a Fedex truck or ups truck or a postal truck that weighs four thousand pounds and a driver. We're gonna my home office allowed Service at home and doorbell rings at the Fedex guy The door bell rings later to Pierre Sky. Postal service will come to the door What's goin on your way of two daughters and my wife, the shopping online and all this stuff is come in the house two and three times a day and you a person bringing a one pound item to the door. Fifty pound person bringing a one pound item to another, fifty pound person, bringing the one pound item to my door and thought, though, probably ways for more than four thousand pounds and now God the people involved. Skype credit, I think, come the constitution. Technologies, They ve got a little robot that can deliver to grocery bags of four miles an hour. So another exactly hall is gonna play out
Are you going to Amazon Workin on drones? I can deliver packages in thirty minutes, by later rationally, don't my trunk irrationally dont, my trunk Udall If I see John, I wanna hit it with a baseball bat for no reason just because I'm looking at me, Why is there? I don't hear Vanessa package for me. The creeps me out out of my window fascinated me about- is not rational. Non rational response. Fascinates me about the sixty minutes. Episode Amazon's, drawn wasn't drawn. It was at Amazon, thinks it's important to give me something in thirty minutes that, in turn, me in I asked my wife and daughter is whether will absolutely I can travel dreams are than thirty minutes and decide whether like I'm a man if I dont ownership and backing- and so that's all about everyone drone? Can you hold on? While I try on the code of good, I watched with them
that's it. Alexander column. Do you also deal with other autonomous systems? We do we look at drones alive and it noting that dominoes actually just joined up with that starship taken. Allergies thing and now in Hamburg germinate they ve got little wheeled robots, delivering beats us the people here and there. So that really seemed like a good idea, because certain neighborhoods you're gonna have kids just really enjoying some free pizza. My neighbour Adobe adults, How could you have an autonomous anything walking with a pizza in front of your great? It's not good. That's that that's a recipe for disaster, I don't know anybody who's gonna, let a free breed suggests y know I drew from coming. Well say that I asked the man- and I know it's locked, but people still eighty exam.
Now, I don't you know the last through it and put it back in a truck cry. The atm down the road, so what you gonna have a bunch of missing drew's on the pizza boxes. Have you seen drew It will be a breeze abuse and you know that and your have like destroy drone that are going to meet the grass Thyssen's Hauser masterpieces, for some reason, He losing drones that go to the other grass Thyssen's house, and they, backyard of meals house. There is just a pile of drones that highly busted out with a picks up. Would you you would need like to make drones that no martial arts, so I also wanted to know also needed to know about flying cars who doesn't isn't at the bidding? that is its. It is the biggest. I feel very grail right, I'm in the communication that I'm in the science community and we all promised people flying cars as you had to bring it up with Larry check it out.
Ok after you give me the autonomous car. We want to find car way overdue for the flying. I want to publicly on record say you have failed us, the flying car promise. I fell on the fine co promise as an engineer. Why not Okay and we're going to have to work it out? I can't help but be impressed by the progress on the drawings and how fast we've gone from not having a name to a lot of working on them, you have the floor. When I was a general motors to travel twenty twenty two twenty five countries a year for over a decade, I was able to see Mexicans general grant engineers israeli engineers, german engineers, chinese engineers, brazilian engineers, motivated to do exactly what engineers are doing, and I would
the night thinking about China, realising that the twenty five percent of the smartest people in China with a population of our that's a stunning fact in what's happening, withdrawals and autonomous vehicles of those young engineers are getting captivated by these opportunities and will put that much Brain power and creativity and motivation globally around things. Why not flying cars Alex? You wrote a story about goober taking over the skies with flying. What what? What was it tell me about the story over actually thing set flying cars can happen, and this isn't the idea of a car that DR sometimes and fly. Sometimes it's more of a vertical, take off and landing electric vehicles. Basically, you know it comes in picks you up wherever you are flies up vertically flies wherever it's going and then drops you off all the helicopter.
That way. The bilateral debt, while rich people already have helicopters So, while one you know, we think that this could be done electrically. You can do it in smaller packages and more quietly, then helicopters, and so I found some aviation engineers and Canada. To my surprise, that I get it totally insane in a few years- will actually have the battery and the aeronautic technology to make these things work somewhat efficiently. But there are a lot of other questions like how on earth. You regulate them, how to set up a again involved, have as air traffic control change, so technologically stock crazy. But realistically there some pretty big hurdles that I brought up this point with Elon Musk we met interviewed him. Four star talk as well all manner of topics, but in there I asked him about flying cars. Gray he's like Mr Inventor Way Rockets
anybody who is going to bring this flying guys as anybody else masculine. So I thought he had a really good answer because once we understand the point of having a flying car because you're stuck in traffic and you and is all this air above you just travel through the free air right and not, then ok. So what you're doing is your adding a dimension to the traffic pattern and when you do that, you completely blow open all the ways you can get from one place to another You get this so what he said was we already have a modern version of that holding aside helicopters. Both a modern version of flying cars is tunnels, ok, think about underpasses right.
Subways Aurelio here we are no its not flying, but it is undefeated under the traffic. You are stuck in right, you're railway cars go in and button on multiple levels. Even there s ripe problem is or not the problem. The benefit will be. I flying car will not smell like you, But we can work on our problem as long as you have traffic lanes that are in a third dimension, be they tunnels, bridges, underpants you don't even here in New York City there. Is the we have a battery park. Underpass ass, you want to drive through battery park, there's a whole tunnel underneath that escrow. That's it basically a flying car through through what would otherwise be traffic and still the best way to travel in New York City. I'm! Ok, what anybody says is the subway, even though a Europe that is really like here and I would always kind of smells like you're. That's because I
Do you don't want me so so Alex have you? Have you thought about I must plan to build tunnels under LA cuz. This is it again. This is the the flying car solution. You just have you go in another dimension. Have you ever thought about that? We're it's something we ve looked at in something we actually talk to Elon Musk a little bit about an hour. Question was well. If you just build one tunnel, that's not really going to solve anything and they came back and he said well, yeah, you're thinking to small, I'm thinking thirty forty layers of tunnels, which is mostly insane the icy her building like a forty layer, deep tunnel structure under problem, it's already full of stuff, like pipelines and subways and train tracks. Eliza crazier than I want to fly right does not necessarily I want to go to the mob willing. We
into the moon and your say: it's crazy thinking to put tunnels under a city now explain yourself, I'm saying it's crazy: that Europe Ask wants to build forty layers of tunnels under the sitting I going to do in Nepal, and I think it's really smart solutions. Ok, ok, I'm so glad you got Nirvana Darras because for a moment the house- I, how did this guy get a job at wired matters, a lot of basically rockets in space, with no possibility of quotas. Crazy talking about so you, you actually agree that it's a good idea Alex. You just think that, to the extent which he wants to do it, there may be a lot of problems,
but to have a couple layers of tunnels would be a good deal. I think part of my job is putting a little bit of salt on Elon Musk ambition. That was very, let's get to my very last clip with Larry Burns, just see where he, where we land this plain, ok, so what the future pilot, airplanes, I engineer lists I've been a conductor, less trains, oh yeah, I know something I don't know Stalinist transpose, nothing's diagnose the train industry asked have to people on the train, one on the front line in the bag and right now, that's a regulatory issue, not a technology issue, its inaction access you for the railroad industry and, let's say suddenly, you're launching driverless over the road trucks and the railroads are still having someone on the phone. The real occur again, I think society or find a way to work for those theirs thus an interest in all others, those vested interest in the oil story. There is best
and in the insurance companies and their vested interests in the autumn, how big the road building industry and all of that, but the same time we need to have a planet. Those revise the sustained sustainability concerns and mobility are about all these sources of waste that we ask him how we elect move. People and goods run on roads, There's a new dna in town and there's a whole new sort of opportunities there so Alex that those are quite some active marks there. Do you have a sense of how you gonna soda and our time with you? I think it's important to note that in automation, and quite here there's a lot of work left to be done, but its most certainly on the way of the big players, a body in, and I think one of the the watermarks there is that Ford came last year, and it said where non automaker anymore, where an automaker and mobility company, if you so, if you got for the biggest one of the biggest item, Europe, the world saying this is not only what we're
we also have to talk about mobility, because economic, not an oil companies and energy, can absolutely everything about it. Ok go on so I think I think you are seeing a sea change that all these players are getting into this market and automation is going to touch on so many things, even beyond rotation. But within the world of moving around trains, absolutely drones, construction, agriculture, mining driving, trucking flying. I think, you're gonna, see it come into every part of this. Since they're gonna be some people losing their jobs. How can we make some money offer this? How do we get in on this acts? Letting on more here be there's a little bit of a view that didn't make it to these chosen clips, and that was that, what's the limit of the upper model and not interrupt me or if you want to hear that full interview, you can do it on startup our Does that camp by going to the voluntary with everybody at the full interviews? Yes, yes, but go ahead so that
What are the rouble model? Is you don't even own a screwdriver, you just call up a screwdriver at school. Graphics delivered tier windowsill. Ten minutes later out is a shared screwdriver, and if you need a hammer, why keep em? Why keep? Why keep a eight in what the tools, the the power toolbox, our power to lots of? Why keep anything that you use once a month right? Exactly have that stuff, so what that would mean they're always be these hammers and screwdrivers in and power tools just floating around. Looking for who would deliver to use it, and then you give it back. You know even need a garage under those conditions already do that. I have a neighbor talkin. My law. More back so Alex thanks for joining us on star talk. Have you got it. You gotta column and wired dot com mired that I'm slashed transportation transportation. We got you that's where we can find you chuck, though.
You can have your head as my co host, and you been listening and possibly watching star talk on this episode involving driverless cars and automated delivery systems. I've been your host Neil Degrasse Tyson, your personal life This is, as always I signed off. I didn't think you'd like down on my old job. The organs wish you could listen the star talk about so free joint your talk on Patria for as little as five dollars per month and the ads will disappear. Learn more at patriarch dot com. Last star talk, radio,
Transcript generated on 2020-01-22.