Glenn Reynolds: Why we still don’t have flying cars

We used to get rockets to the Moon. Now we get Facebook. That’s the essence of a complaint, published in the MIT Technology Review, that technological progress is slowing down, and becoming less useful.

  • G

    Every word in the article I agree with.

    BUT, can you imagine if we DID have flying cars? They would have to be driverless because most people can’t drive worth a damn on a 2 dimensional place even WITH roads, lines, signs, speed limits and lights. Driving in 3 Dimensions would be impossible for them.

  • Hard Little Machine

    The first thing I would do is put on missiles.

  • dance…dancetotheradio

    I grew up with the great science fiction dream of teleportation.
    The social disruption would be immense but the benefits would far outweigh those costs.
    Analogous to the internet.
    Can you imagine not having to drive a car at all?

    • DavidinNorthBurnaby

      They’re not going to scramble up my particles, thanks. I’ll walk if I have to. 🙂

      • dance…dancetotheradio

        Dammit Jim!

      • dance…dancetotheradio

        I remember one fascinating story where a guy would walk into a cloning teleporter and wonder which one would walk out on the other side.
        It was written from the multiple viewpoints of the guys who got stuck in horrible environments on far flung planets.

        • FactsWillOut

          I remember stories about making alibis for murders on the other side of planet, and “floating riots” where people would teleport to sites of accidents or whatever…
          One good one started out with the scientists testing it out on it’s first trans-Atlantic hop, and the scientist came out of the receiving end holding a gun, with a briefcase strapped to his wrist (neither of which he had when he left), and demanded a counter-sign from his colleagues. When they expressed their bafflement, he said “I’ve been compromised” and suicided, leaving the egg-heads scratching their heads, wondering what went wrong with their machine….

          • dance…dancetotheradio

            That’s cool.
            I wonder if they still have science fiction sections in school libraries.

          • FactsWillOut

            I think they were replaced with Room 101.

        • Clausewitz

          Nothinng could possibly go wrong. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eYXRxwcwVbg

      • FactsWillOut

        Come now, you’re sure to come out the receiver as a happy, well adjusted citizen of the worker’s paradise…

      • Maggat

        They are doing their level best to incrementally scramble the the particles in our brains. Also, I’ll drive, thanks.

    • El Martyachi

      Not having to drive a car at all? What are you, some sorta communist?

      • dance…dancetotheradio

        An eighty kilometer round trip adds an hour to my work day.
        All highway miles but in the winter it is brutal.
        One night something screwed up at work and we had to stay late to troubleshoot it knowing a storm was coming.
        When we left it took me almost an hour to drive down the service road to get to the main highway and another hour and a half to get home after that.
        The worst part of my yob is getting there and back.
        If I could roll out of the front door and into work without that hassle I would be a much happier man.

        • El Martyachi

          In all seriousness, you guys (specifically your organization) could and should probably have quarters onsite for staff whenever it’s needed. I can’t imagine costs are an issue.

        • El Martyachi

          Increasingly clear are my intentions, as future chancellor of Mantario, to militarize critical infrastructure. Fair warning and all…

  • Clausewitz

    The idiots in the GTA have a hard enough time dealing with traffic in two dimensions, just think how badly they would fuck it up if they where given a third dimension to worry about.