There is no doubt that trends such as urbanization and the adoption of smart technologies are going to change transportation. There are a lot of questions about how urban mobility will change and impact autonomous vehicles. In fact, there is a lot of debate, which is why in this column I will spend time digging into this topic even more.
When you think of cities of the future, what comes to mind? Are we talking about AVs (autonomous vehicles) and transportation? Sometimes we are talking about the future of supply chains and logistics. And other times we are looking at urbanization and how cities are going to adapt.
Let’s be clear about the IoT (Internet of Things): The only constant is constant change and if you blink, you’ll probably miss something. The IoT has created so much opportunity to speed processes up. What’s more, there’s constant data at our fingertips, and people and machines are making rapid decisions based on this realtime data. And as the era of 5G dawns, everything’s about to get even faster.
Many people are just starting to realize some of the challenges facing cities and states as they grapple with ways to solve their various transportation problems. It is without a doubt—one that everyone who lives in a city or commutes to one ought to be interested in. Slightly more than half of all people live in cities today, but that is rapidly changing.
I know I have written about this more than once this year, but it deserves repeating; 5G is going to be something to watch as solutions are developed leveraging its power and speed. What’s more, if you attended Mobile World Congress this year, you heard all the buzz surrounding 5G. I’d go as far as to say that 5G is hot right now. Many companies are chomping at the bit to tell us all about how they’re going all-in on 5G.
I can’t count how many times I have written about AI (artificial intelligence). But for this columns I will address it again in part, because you will be hearing about it for many years to come. The fact is there are many reasons why this is true. AI is changing the nature of the relationship between humans and machines, and that’s a heavy statement with a lot of consequences. It’s for this very reason I believe we need to focus on the question of ethics in autonomous and intelligent systems.
There has been much discussion on what the U.S. Dept. of Transportation is doing to prepare our nation for autonomous vehicles and the future of transportation. Let’s take a step back. Autonomous vehicles represent a huge change in modern society. I think the shift is kind of like the shift from horse-driven carriages to motorized automobiles. Today, many of us are used to owning vehicles, driving them from point A to point B, usually alone.
Some people become advocates against distracted driving after tragedy strikes, my motivation was different. While I have not lost someone close to me as a result of distracted driving, I was in a car accident many years ago, and that moment gave me pause to think about what people are doing when they are driving.
There has been a lot written about robots replacing humans. But what we should be discussing is humans and how they will be working together with robots to create a better, more connected environment.
Automation is turning industries and sectors upside-down. It’s not the first-time technology is changing the workforce in a drastic way, and it won’t be the last time, either. In this column, we are continuing our overarching discussion about automation and reskilling by focusing on how automation is affecting the nature of work in sectors like hospitality and retail.