Uber

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G. Keenan
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Re: Uber

Post by G. Keenan »

Much of Uber et. al's success is due to the fact that you press a button on your phone and a car comes to wherever you are within minutes. In cities where taxis aren't circulating constantly this is everything. Remember calling taxis companies and having the dispatcher send one to you? You would have to call 2 or 3 times because the first two they dispatched would never show up and you'd wait for like an hour.

Even in cities with tons of taxis (like Chicago) there are plenty of neighborhoods where it's still hard to get them. Back when I lived in Humboldt Park I got so sick of having to call the taxi company and never have one show up. That's what prompted me to first sign up for uber.
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lukethedrifter
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Re: Uber

Post by lukethedrifter »

G. Keenan wrote:Much of Uber et. al's success is due to the fact that you press a button on your phone and a car comes to wherever you are within minutes. In cities where taxis aren't circulating constantly this is everything. Remember calling taxis companies and having the dispatcher send one to you? You would have to call 2 or 3 times because the first two they dispatched would never show up and you'd wait for like an hour.

Even in cities with tons of taxis (like Chicago) there are plenty of neighborhoods where it's still hard to get them. Back when I lived in Humboldt Park I got so sick of having to call the taxi company and never have one show up. That's what prompted me to first sign up for uber.
This is way true. Too often these days “disruption” of an industry really means just finding a way to drive real wages into the ground and put the risk on the employee. The taxi industry should have disrupted itself and not been so [expletive].
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Jocephus
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Re: Uber

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Joe Shlabotnik
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Re: Uber

Post by Joe Shlabotnik »

California passes a law classifying most gig-economy workers employees.

Uber says 'suck it' - our drivers aren't core to our business.

I'm thinking this isn't rocket science - San Fran, LA, NYC ought to beef up their IT departments to maintain servers that would support their own ride-sharing platform. Can't be hard to find programmers familiar with this kind of thing that would be attracted to stable employment. Then issue licenses to drivers to use their platform. Boom - f*ck Uber.

I really, really hate that company.
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Schlich
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Re: Uber

Post by Schlich »

Joe Shlabotnik wrote:California passes a law classifying most gig-economy workers employees.

Uber says 'suck it' - our drivers aren't core to our business.

I'm thinking this isn't rocket science - San Fran, LA, NYC ought to beef up their IT departments to maintain servers that would support their own ride-sharing platform. Can't be hard to find programmers familiar with this kind of thing that would be attracted to stable employment. Then issue licenses to drivers to use their platform. Boom - f*ck Uber.

I really, really hate that company.
yes!!!
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vinsanity
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Re: Uber

Post by vinsanity »

Joe Shlabotnik wrote:California passes a law classifying most gig-economy workers employees.

Uber says 'suck it' - our drivers aren't core to our business.

I'm thinking this isn't rocket science - San Fran, LA, NYC ought to beef up their IT departments to maintain servers that would support their own ride-sharing platform. Can't be hard to find programmers familiar with this kind of thing that would be attracted to stable employment. Then issue licenses to drivers to use their platform. Boom - f*ck Uber.

I really, really hate that company.
A lot of tech companies are paying developers high wages with equity stakes with 'cool' offices and great benefits.

Most cities probably won't or can't pay enough to get people who are familiar with this tech to make a comparable experience. It's feasible but even issuing licenses you end up with the same issue as taxi medallions, creating a barrier to entry that makes it more difficult to get enough supply to meet demand.
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33anda3rd
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Re: Uber

Post by 33anda3rd »

Some things need a barrier to entry. Surgeon. Attorney. President. Well, used to be President. Pilot. Used to be you had a chauffeur license, yes? And Livery license plates. Why is it that now you just have to buy a used Accord and send a photo of your insurance policy? There's gotta be a bigger barrier to entry.

It's game day at Wrigley. You pick a guy up at Irving Park and the Lake. He wants to get to the Vic Theater. Without an app: what's the best way?

Lady gets in the car, says she wants to go to 4800 N California. That's the corner of California and what? If you don't know multiples of 400 you don't pay attention in Chicago, it's the expressway exits, main roads, main el stations. If you don't know 4800 = Lawrence, 4400 = Montrose, 4000 = Irving Park, 3600 = Addison and so on, you don't know your way around.

If you need to look at your phone while driving to have an app tell you where to go, you should not be driving.

Taxi drivers you could tell them "4744 N Leavitt" or "Aragon Ballroom" or "The Sheraton" and they would take you there. What we have now is chaos on the streets b/c these people have no business driving for a living.
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vinsanity
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Re: Uber

Post by vinsanity »

33anda3rd wrote:Some things need a barrier to entry.
I agree but I wasn't arguing there shouldn't be a barrier to entry; just that the cost limits supply. It also raises the costs.
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Joe Shlabotnik
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Re: Uber

Post by Joe Shlabotnik »

vinsanity wrote:
Joe Shlabotnik wrote:California passes a law classifying most gig-economy workers employees.

Uber says 'suck it' - our drivers aren't core to our business.

I'm thinking this isn't rocket science - San Fran, LA, NYC ought to beef up their IT departments to maintain servers that would support their own ride-sharing platform. Can't be hard to find programmers familiar with this kind of thing that would be attracted to stable employment. Then issue licenses to drivers to use their platform. Boom - f*ck Uber.

I really, really hate that company.
A lot of tech companies are paying developers high wages with equity stakes with 'cool' offices and great benefits.

Most cities probably won't or can't pay enough to get people who are familiar with this tech to make a comparable experience. It's feasible but even issuing licenses you end up with the same issue as taxi medallions, creating a barrier to entry that makes it more difficult to get enough supply to meet demand.
I've been in software since the 80's. I've been a part of a lot of company's that thought their scat didn't stink they were so bleeding edge. Until the next big thing and your old tech is ubiquitous and easy to copy.
You can farm your server acquisition and maintenance out to AWS. You can probably find open source templates for platforms like Uber / Lyft / et al. You can find young coders in any city (or cheap-ass country) to do what those hot shots in Silicon Valley did two to five years ago.

Again, this is not rocket science. You could make it work. In fact, you could be the entrepreneur that builds the platform that gets licensed to cities for their use.
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BottenFieldofDreams
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Re: Uber

Post by BottenFieldofDreams »

I don't know if Uber still raises as much capital as they want as fast as they want--probably not like they used to. But damn they would lobby and sabotage to bejesus and back if municipalities tried to do their own ride shares. They have a history of no respect for cities--no consideration or interest in cooperating at all. Full on violating laws. They've done things like raid Carnegie Mellon for talent very aggressively. I wouldn't put anything past them.

Hassan Minaj did a piece on how Telecom companies fight municipal internet. It would be like that with a lot more foul play if Uber is involved. Lyft would also be fighting it.
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