Presenting ACCTOR

Not able to leave well enough alone it's time to take an active role in the change that is now beginning. 

Driverless vehicles, a technology that has always been 20 years away is about to reveal its true potential. It won't happen overnight, and no one knows what is around the next corner, but we will all be a part of a future without the car as we have known it.

Please join our company ACCTOR as it follows this  path, and helps to support a new and more open road.

Blue Lanes - A Strategy for Integrating Driverless Mobility - Part 1

The Road We Are On

Driverless cars. Autonomous vehicles. This new era of mobility and its implementation by our largest corporations appears imminent. We sit passively, in the passenger seat as it were, hoping for the best. The viability, capacity, and risk of self driving vehicles are all topics of debate, but society as a whole is taking few visible steps to prepare for what will clearly be an enormous change. In truth, what can we do?

Looking at the tech alone there might be little we can do. Driverless vehicles represent one of the greatest technological challenges ever undertaken, and only automotive and technology companies possess the deep pockets (and lines of credit) necessary to develop it. It is a project that no government organization (outside the military) has the budget to undertake and too complex for any regulatory agency to effectively manage. But it is happening nonetheless.

And why not let them build it for us? Driverless solutions are an attractive prospect for ca…

A Shape of Things To Come

The LAV - Lightweight Automated Vehicle

The potential that autonomous vehicles (AVs) represent for disruptive and beneficial change calls for increased study and evaluation. Because of the speed at which relevant technologies are developing the time has come to look beyond short term impacts on safety, travel time reduction, accessibility and parking. History suggests that the present focus of debates over driverless vehicles-- liability, security, and popular acceptance -- are likely to be transitory. The significance of a mature autonomous transportation system will take longer to develop, but will have a profound impact on our social, economic, and built environments.

This study examines the potential for driverless vehicles to address travel demand generated by activities not usually associated with single-occupancy vehicles. The focus is on the potential for small, lightweight, automated vehicles (LAV’s) to perform transportation duties that are presently accomplished by larger,…

Driverless Cars and Locally Sourced Foods

Why don't locally sourced foods compete successfully with products shipped halfway around the world? Protectionism? Conspiracy?

Well, sometimes. But more likely it is because today's transportation/distribution system is largely indifferent to the distance food items travel to their final destination. This is true not only for foods that can't (or shouldn't) be produced in the markets where they are consumed. A lot of Chilean wine is consumed in San Francisco, and Napa is not far away.

The real reason is containerization - the "magic box" in a system of large scale containerized transport and logistics. Essentially any item in this system is effectively closer to consumers than locally produced products.

For example; a Costa Rican banana enters a supply chain that is as efficient as it is expensive to alter. Each link of that chain from producer to consumer is enmeshed in a tight logistical and financial choreography that straddles borders and continents, wi…

Sustainability and the Promise of Driverless Cars

Bottom line. Sustainability is why I'm interested in driverless cars.

And It's why we should all be interested.

We  are, after all, facing existential challenges .  Central to them all is the fact that 5 billion people (give or take) are shortly to join us in the developed world. While a wonderful thing in general, with countless fringe benefits and unseen potentials, it is almost certainly unsustainable with the transportation tools at hand.

And as much as I'd like to sleep at the wheel, or no longer have to look for parking, I wouldn't care about driverless cars if they didn't have the potential to tackle real-world problems.  If this technology doesn't increase our ability to deal with the very real challenges facing us today then I have no  interest in it at all.

Can driverless vehicles, and the driverless system they enable, make a difference? Not just an incremental one, not just a marginal improvement,  but change fundamentally the way we move ourselves…

WSF? How Driverless cars will transform the Washington State Ferry System.

Driverless vehicles have the potential to reestablish the Washington State Ferry System to its historical role as a critical regional transportation network - halving trip times, doubling or tripling the capacity of the existing system - all without significant changes to boats or docks. Ferry facilities will take up less than 20% of the real estate they presently require when driverless vehicles become the norm.

All of which means that the Washington State Ferry system is an ideal example of the enormous disruption driverless vehicles are set unleash on regional transportation infrastructures.

The System Today 

Each region has its own set of unique transportation challenges, but few are as daunting as those facing the managers of Seattle/Tacoma's regional transportation network. Most serious are the numerous choke-points created by hills, canals, lakes, and, finally, by Puget Sound itself.  Moving north to south is difficult enough on the region's two (highly congested) primary …

While Level 5 automation is a distant dream.

Level 4 is already on the Road
An old story - a new technology, a shiny new toy, and the promise of a boundless future. We want this new technology to break the bonds that limit our present world, to be complete in and of itself. But history suggests that without a proper road the future will never arrive. The driverless car is only half the story. The other half is the story of the road.

For a great discussion of the difference between levels 4 and 5 of automation in driverless vehicles it's hard to beat Gill Pratt's speech at CES.

                 "at a level V automation the car can drive fully autonomously under any
                 traffic or weather  conditions, At any place at any time. No human required."

Level IV 4 on the other hand limits autonomous operation to well map areas under nominal driving conditions. Pratt's speech makes it clear that level 5 is a long way off, though it remains the declared goal of every carmaker interested in driverless veh…