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02-12-2013, 02:42 PM #1
Amazon Will Hire Special Delivery Boys
First of all, this concept involves making delivery by drones, and secondly, those drones are not ground controlled. They are intended to be bots. I almost laugh to the sky when I saw the Mr. Shawn Langlois (a blogger, I am not sure if he is a journalist or not) of Marketwatch associated them with Skynet. Haha~ Governator may need to speak up to clear our fear towards bots.
I can understand why government hesitate to legalize this. Flight traffic control for bot run flights really is nightmare. If we haven't even apply bot run vehicles on public roads, we will still be a long way from implementing this concept.
Nice try, Amazon and Dominos, you are driving the innovation of the world. We may be at the eve of revolution.
02-12-2013, 03:27 PM #2
I fear that lossage from people knocking the drones out of the sky somehow (either to get at their sweet, sweet packages, or just for kicks) will put a crimp on this concept..
02-12-2013, 04:36 PM #3
Have the drones fly comparatively high (but still low enough to not screw with "real" air traffic) until it reaches destination, then descend vertically. That will make them less visually obvious and will limit taking them down to people with guns of some form.
Then just mount a camera array that takes a few pics every couple of seconds and sends them to a server (cell phone data towers will work for this, and it shouldn't be hard to piggyback public wifi/private wifi that businesses/people give amazon access to for incentives). And work with law enforcement to prosecute the hell out of anyone who takes down a drone (obviously said camera will have to be in a durable casing) since that actually IS endangering the hell out of people (what goes up tends to come down at a pretty high velocity...).
Beyond that, you just have people who steal shit when it is delivered, and those people already know to just follow a UPS truck. And if said packages can be delivered in the backyard/garden, then that makes it even more secure (since people will have to hop a fence to steal it).
And theft can be reduced to near zero by making this only available when someone is actually around to accept it, and using UPS/FedEx/whatever you europeans use for normal deliveries.
Last edited by gundato; 02-12-2013 at 04:38 PM.
02-12-2013, 05:18 PM #4
02-12-2013, 05:21 PM #5
02-12-2013, 05:31 PM #6
And beyond that, I think the driver has a lot of control over it. My usual UPS guy is great about opening the screen door and leaving packages between that and the front door (protects it from the weather and makes it almost impossible to miss). The guy who subbed for said UPS dude when he needed knee surgery actually left my latest video card in the mud to the side of the steps... (fortunately he was also VERY late so I managed to get there as he was driving down the street).
Then we have the joy of fedex who actually left a package (that WAS insured and needed a signature...) "outside the building"... of where I work... at 8 at night... Let's just say that was a fun and frantic drive to get to it before it was stolen (good news, the fedex moron left it in his truck and just marked it as delivered to meet his quota...). Or the other fedex moron who kept forgetting to deliver my video card from two upgrades ago for over two weeks. And never took it out of the truck so I couldn't even swing by the fedex warehouse/dispatch center to grab it myself...
I REALLY dislike fedex...
02-12-2013, 05:34 PM #7
I genuinely do not understand how this is supposed to be an improvement over a human on a bicycle. There are so many problems, where do you even start. Battery life, weather, navigation around obstacles, birds, casual vandalism, delivery to anywhere besides a cute suburban house with its own backyard...
It's a cool idea and all, but in 10 years or so a self-driving electric car would be a better option in every conceivable way.
02-12-2013, 05:43 PM #8
02-12-2013, 05:45 PM #9
Once the development costs are out of the way, the drones will be a flat cost, and even factoring in maintenance it will still be FAR below salaries, let alone benefits.
Its the same concept behind converting from an assembly line with chinese interns to a factory with Bender's grandparents (or even the self-driving cars you yourself like, which will still need someone to get the right package out of the car and to the consumer). It has a high initial cost but MUCH lower costs in the long run.
Last edited by gundato; 02-12-2013 at 06:01 PM.
03-12-2013, 09:28 AM #10
03-12-2013, 09:31 AM #11
The future will be abolishing money by invention of the mass replicator.
03-12-2013, 10:04 AM #12
03-12-2013, 10:26 AM #13
Well, it only results from huge social change and a mass distribution of resources. Atleast, if we can believe Star Trek.
And I think its inevitable.
03-12-2013, 01:26 PM #14
03-12-2013, 01:27 PM #15
If this proposal was few years ago, I also would consider this as some PR work or some rich boys coming up with some new toys to play. But now it's 2013. If you look around your society carefully you will soon realize that this proposal is motivated by solid economic rationale. More than, I would even say that it's a bit late for online retailers like Amazon who revolutionizes our economy so fundamentally that retailing is no longer the same as it is a decade ago. I mean, how can I imagine ordering English book so conveniently before Amazon.com?
I don't know about Europe, but postal system over here is on the brink of collapse. Even Hong Kong is not far from a similar predicament. Those Kongeses even blame on us for this crisis, they claim that our postal system divert much of its exporting posts to them. This is true, but as I know this is Hong Kong Postal's own initiative to absorb some of our overseas posts, I don't know why they are complaining for something they ask for. Anyway, both us and those Kongeses run into serious trouble for the absence of postal service which enable parcels to reach overseas receivers on schedule. Many individual online vendors lose much on compensation as a consequences. How do I know all these? My company has our samples to be sent to overseas clients categorized, premium sent through UPS and Fedex and the like, lowest prioritized (I don't know the criteria, the amount of the project I guess?) sent through postal. Whenever overseas clients complain about not receiving the samples sent through postal right on schedule, my Kongese bosses would throw the files right to my face and yell at me (oh, I love those cute Hong Kong "girls"). Things are getting worse, what scheduled to be delivered in 2 weeks can sit there (still here or in Hong Kong? That's a myth.) for more than months! Subsequently, more frequently I was yelled at (I start to have nightmare, damn it).
As I know, the US postal system is also not far from bankruptcy. Can you imagine a modern economy in absent of a modern postal system in peace time? So what, everyone has to "mail' through expensive express delivery services?
One thing I don't quite understand: who the fuxking genius come up the idea of making postal system self-subsisting? Postal service is supposed to be public service. I don't know, are postal workers in your country civil servants? They are here so far as I know. The result of this self-financing postal service is its own bankruptcy. I cannot perceive how postal system can be profitable in the first place.
Postal system here used to have a very unique source of income: postal saving (banking). For some reason, our postal offices used to run banking for low-income people as well. Don't underestimate this financial power. It's all about aggregate power. While wealth of most low income households are aggregated into this postal banking system, it is very formidable even to international banking. Those are the households whom usual banking institutes won't desire as client, and postal banking pick them up. Years ago, however, some corrupted officials sliced it off from the postal system, to pocket some of the funds of postal banking, I don't doubt. Result? Our once well-doing postal system is not so well-doing anymore. Hong Kong's system is after British (and therefore, western) one, yet I've never heard that they have any postal financial institute over there, so I guess postal banking is not something you could imagine. We once had it, running so well, but now it's long gone.
Ordering from Amazon.com in the US requires very expensive shipping, and that's standard shipping through postal system, at least 10 bucks something lump-sum (insurance required), and around 4 bucks for each item. Since postal system in their own country is no longer reliable, bot-run drone delivery system could be a long term solution. It's hundred miles from implementation, of course, but everything must has a start, and this, is a good start.
03-12-2013, 02:45 PM #16
06-12-2013, 07:31 AM #17
If this becomes reality I might take up skeet shooting just for the fun of it. Start bagging me some free stuff. Of course, they'd probably stick cameras on them then, but you'd think drones with cameras on them definitely would be illegal.
06-12-2013, 02:22 PM #18
07-12-2013, 01:38 PM #19