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Freightliner's level 4 autonomous truck and the social impact of automation on our economy

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posted on Dec, 26 2018 @ 06:02 PM
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Well your new ideas are probably 99% of the planet being killed off since the 1% who own all the wealth and therefore control everything won't need them anymore.

Seems pretty crappy to me, but there we go.




posted on Dec, 26 2018 @ 06:02 PM
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a reply to: Zaphod58




belt, and even then they won't make a lot of money, run as fast as they can. There's a major driver shortage looming.


I get it, wages aren't moving and that's half the problem with the economy. thanks for the info can't wait to see what ya post



posted on Dec, 26 2018 @ 06:03 PM
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originally posted by: Puppylove
a reply to: toysforadults

They need to pay us a reasonable wage in the first place for that to be a risk. Even with the shortage some are trying to pass bills to get rid of travel pay requirements between clients. The whole industry is insane. But yes an influx of workers willing to get paid peanuts and sit around doing nothing and stealing from the elderly will not help.

There will be no hope of the industry improving with a worker influx. We can barely make a difference with how in demand we are already. Instead of improving incentives they just lower standards. They'll have even less incentive to improve with excess workers.


we have to make a culture shift for any real changes to happen. people think economic fundamentals apply but economic fundamentals are just tools we use so we need to learn how to apply the tools properly

that will require social/cultural evolution



posted on Dec, 26 2018 @ 06:04 PM
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originally posted by: Ohanka
Well your new ideas are probably 99% of the planet being killed off since the 1% who own all the wealth and therefore control everything won't need them anymore.

Seems pretty crappy to me, but there we go.


I agree



posted on Dec, 26 2018 @ 06:12 PM
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a reply to: toysforadults

I'm running as an Independent Contractor, on a fixed route of just over 1100 miles one way. I only get paid when the wheels are turning, or we sit waiting at a dock for longer than an two hours (the pay starts at one, but isn't worth claiming until after 2 hours). As a contractor, I make just under $1 a mile, but fuel, truck payments, insurance, permits, and all truck related expenses comes out of that pay. On three loads a week, we bring in between $500-600. Then you get to your non-trucking expenses, like rent and car payments, and insurance, and that goes away fast some weeks. My annual pay over the last six years has steadily declined which doesn't help.

A brand new, company driver after finishing training (training they usually get a fixed amount per week, usually between $250-400 depending on company) will bring in a whopping $0.25-0.26 a mile. A solo driver, who is willing to run his ass off, can max out at about 3300 miles a week. That sounds like a decent paycheck, until you realize that unless you're really careful you can't do that week after week. We have four different clocks that we have to monitor that limit our work time (three are daily, and one is weekly). Unless you know how to play that weekly clock, you're going to have to sit for 34 hours to get a reset in about once every 10 days or so. And the 3300 miles is dependent on freight being strong in every market you run in, which isn't the case. I pretty routinely hear about the company that I'm contracted to sending drivers from Arizona to California, because they're overbooked in Arizona, and underbooked in California. And unless the company hiring them is paying the deadhead, they're NOT going to run you very far if they have a load picking up the next day or something that they can give you.

This industry has utterly screwed itself into the ground, and is going to implode at some point. And it's going to be a godawful mess.



posted on Dec, 26 2018 @ 06:30 PM
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a reply to: Zaphod58

wow that's low pay!!!

my father drives for RHOEL and he's bringing in about $900 a week running his balls off for 14 day clips or 10 maybe not sure. but he said he drives for one of the best companies out there so not sure if that's true?

but the way I see is that's a lot of work for only 900 a week. don't get me wrong 900 a week is good money but it's not as good as it was a few years ago

hell I know a guy who was a contractor making 1000 a week in the 70's doing construction with a crew of just himself and a helper. he retired well off but that's money being made in the 70's and people are making less than that in a trade union now after dues and pension are taken out



posted on Dec, 26 2018 @ 06:37 PM
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Class 8 truck orders dropped below 30,000 in November, which is a 15% drop over November 2017, and the lowest of the year. Orders over the summer saw as high as a 141% increase, and there are currently over 300,000 trucks on order for the 2019 year.

www.ttnews.com...

The catch, that was largely overlooked in a lot of reports, is that in May, when a number of freight companies were talked to, the majority of the trucks they were ordering were to replace existing older trucks, and trucks that were destroyed in accidents. At one of the early year transportation conferences, Knight-Swift announced that they made $35M more in profits but ran 1200 fewer trucks last year than 2016, due to a lack of drivers. Industry estimates are that drivers need to make $68,000-72,000 to attract a sufficient number. Current industry average puts pay at the mid $50,000 range.

www.logisticsmgmt.com...

wolfstreet.com...


Now, trucking companies swamped with demand are turning down freight and raising contract rates by 10% or more, with further increases expected next year. Many are boosting pay to recruit drivers in a tight labor market and say the price increases are justified after rates remained stagnant for many years.

Covenant Transportation Group Inc., a large trucking company based in Chattanooga, Tenn., said last month it had raised rates as much as 14% this year, and expects to see increases of 7% to 8% in 2019.

Knight Transportation, a division of Knight-Swift Transportation Holdings Inc., the largest U.S. truckload company, said its revenue per loaded mile, a measure of pricing strength, soared 21% in the second quarter from the same quarter a year earlier. The company is getting customers that now are paying high spot-market rates to sign long-term contracts with rate increases to ensure they can get trucks.

Derek Leathers, president and CEO of Werner Enterprises. PHOTO: AARON P. BERNSTEIN/BLOOMBERG NEWS
“We screamed from the mountaintop during all those years about how this isn’t sustainable and it will bounce back and eventually….it’s going to get ugly, and ugly is here,” Derek Leathers, chief executive of Omaha, Neb.-based Werner Enterprises Inc., one of the largest U.S. trucking companies, said at an investor conference in late June.

www.wsj.com...

Demand is going up, while capacity is going down due to the driver shortage, which is driving prices up significantly. Eventually something's going to give.



posted on Dec, 26 2018 @ 06:39 PM
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a reply to: toysforadults

We basically stay out three to four months or longer at a time. We'll come in if the truck breaks, or if I have a trip planned, but I got a car with less than 200 miles on it in December of 2017, and a year later I'm just barely over 6,000 miles on it. That includes a trip from Phoenix to Fallon, Nevada and back, and from Phoenix to Mojave, California and back. We try to work in four trips a week, which bumps us to about $1,000 a week.



posted on Dec, 26 2018 @ 06:40 PM
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a reply to: Zaphod58

greedy greedy people, I know they profiting enough to raise driver pay



posted on Dec, 26 2018 @ 06:41 PM
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originally posted by: Zaphod58
a reply to: toysforadults

We basically stay out three to four months or longer at a time. We'll come in if the truck breaks, or if I have a trip planned, but I got a car with less than 200 miles on it in December of 2017, and a year later I'm just barely over 6,000 miles on it. That includes a trip from Phoenix to Fallon, Nevada and back, and from Phoenix to Mojave, California and back. We try to work in four trips a week, which bumps us to about $1,000 a week.


that's a lot of work though you basically live on the job I mean you need more money for that IMO you should be pulling in 100k a year living at your job



posted on Dec, 26 2018 @ 06:42 PM
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a reply to: toysforadults

I worked the office for Werner in 2007-08, and they were one of the few companies at the time actually running debt free. For years, trucking was a losing proposition. That's changing now, and I agree that they could easily bring pay up and solve this problem. But they won't.



posted on Dec, 26 2018 @ 06:55 PM
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So what happens when one of these driverless trucks wipes out a family in a minivan or a schoolbus full of orphans?

I'm sure the lawyers are waiting in the wings.



posted on Dec, 26 2018 @ 08:28 PM
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originally posted by: cynicalheathen
So what happens when one of these driverless trucks wipes out a family in a minivan or a schoolbus full of orphans?

I'm sure the lawyers are waiting in the wings.


The same thing that happens when a truck driven by a human wipes out a family in a minivan or a school bus full of orphans. The company gets sued whether it is the truckers fault or not.

I'd put money on driverless vehicles being safer overall. However, you are right that driverless vehicles will create some interesting legal issues.



posted on Dec, 26 2018 @ 08:42 PM
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a reply to: toysforadults

Automation will certainly put a lot of people out of work. However, I think the fallacy in your thinking is that you assume the workforce is static and not changing. Yes, there will be people in the short term who are hurt, but overall, consumers benefit and other jobs are created as a result.

Take for instance, travel agents. I used to be a frequent business traveler back in the early 90s. Business travel is such an intergral part of the business I worked in (management consulting) that we literally had several full time travel agents in our office. All they did was literally make travel arrangements. I'd pick up the phone and say I need to be in NYC next week and need a hotel and they'd take care of it.

Then comes this thing call the internet. The next thing I know, the travel agents are gone and all the employees are pointing and clicking making our own travel arrangements online. In some ways, it was far more efficient and definitely cheaper for the company. It sucked to see those travel agents get laid off, but it is what it is.

However, someone had to make the technology that replaced those travel agents. So while the travel agents were losing their jobs, there was a programmer, a sales person, a marketing person, and other people who had jobs because this technology was developed. The technology needed to be implemented. A sales person had to go out and win the account. A marketing person had to the marketing of the product.

Businesses and jobs are constantly evolving. There are jobs that have run their course and no longer needed, but other jobs are created as a result. Change is part of life. I suggest you read a book called "Who moved my cheese..."

As an individual, you have to prepare yourself for inevitable change. I make really good money right now. Some years, I make several hundred grand a year. However, technology and market changes will soon make my job obsolete. I can sit around and bitch and moan about it or I can just prepare myself and be ready when it happens.



posted on Dec, 26 2018 @ 09:38 PM
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a reply to: Edumakated

I am familiar with your argument but show me where the jobs are currently being create?

There isn't an equal ratio to jobs replace and create by the same technology replacing them. The ratio for jobs going away is far higher unless you can pull some data up to prove otherwise.



posted on Dec, 26 2018 @ 10:00 PM
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a reply to: Edumakated

Well, in a crash involving a human driver, the trucking company can shift some liability to the driver, saying he was intoxicated/tired/distracted/etc... and try and negotiate less money out of their pocket by saying the driver broke this policy or that policy. With an autonomous system, the shift would be to the company which designed the truck.

You basically take human error out of the equation as an explanation for the crash. It'd wind up as one giant finger pointing match between the trucking company and truck designer.

If someone could prove in court that an autonomous truck was unsafe, it'd be devastating for the company. I understand that automation is making a lot of jobs obsolete, but a robot bolted to a floor in a factory is a lot different than a vehicle on the roadway.



posted on Dec, 26 2018 @ 10:05 PM
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a reply to: cynicalheathen

I think they would have to prove that even though there was a crash the autonomous driving would still have a higher ratio of crashes per capita of drivers = non drivers in order for that to hold weight in court

this is going to need a legislative body to oversea the process



posted on Dec, 27 2018 @ 12:35 AM
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Considering over 90% of jobs have already been replaced by automation and technology, this is nothing more than a blip in technological progress. Yes it is a general broken window fallacy.

Consider the following.

Less than a century ago people in the field of transportation and directly related jobs took care of horses and horse related equipment. Be they saddles, carriage makers, horse farms, farm hands etc.

This is the next step, just like in the past it took hundreds of people shoveling coal into ships for fuel for a week, being replaced with a hour or so and a small team hooking up an oil line.

Mechanization started long ago, and will continue on for the foreseeable future, and we as humans will change along with it. Just like the change from the majority of people leading agrarian based lives, to approximately 2% of people working fields now.

If you want to know how the future will look when relating to this subject, look at the last hundred years.
edit on 27-12-2018 by dubiousatworst because: grammar



posted on Dec, 27 2018 @ 12:44 AM
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a reply to: dubiousatworst

I included a rebuttal to this point in the OP



posted on Dec, 27 2018 @ 01:12 AM
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a reply to: toysforadults
Right, I am not saying that jobs will be replaced in any currently foreseeable way, and that is why I inserted the thought of a broken glass fallacy. As I can see that the general platitude I alluded to could possibly be seen as such. I was more so making my argument along the lines of the ever changing nature of economic viability. There are certain jobs that currently are only efficiently able to be completed by humans, as evidenced by Elon Musk's attempt to automate his Tesla factories. He found that there are situations where humans still out perform machines in manufacturing, and that caused him some teething troubles when attempting to ramp up Model 3 production.

White collar job certainly can be replaced by computational devices, and probably far more so than some tough edge case manufacturing situations. As for transportation specifically, rail is a good example for comparison. Automation has relatively recently been hit hard and driven down the work force from something like 3% of the population in it's hayday to 0.1% of the population now. I expect that the same kind of hit to the population doing over the road transport will occur as the tech increases in efficiency.

However the time it takes to implement this tech is understated, as humans are rather stubborn things. We like to think that technology progresses fairly linearly once introduced, however it takes a human generation or so to actually take hold, as is evidenced in logistics for military operations. The example I will use for this is the use of Trucks for transport of supply. In WW2 only the US really used a large number of Trucks for the transport in logistics in comparison to other countries involved, even though automotive technology had very well progressed by that time in history and had had a couple decades to mature. The Soviets used horses for nearly 70% of last mile logistics work, as did the Germans, so a lack of oil isn't a viable excuse for the reason behind their usage.
en.wikipedia.org...

Because of this, when it comes to logistical usage of technology, it takes a rather long time to convince existing companies to switch over to a new technology, little on government entities. This should be evidenced by some organizations still using COBOL and other out of date programming languages. The argument I am making is that yes technology in automation is progressing quickly, but its maturation and deployment takes a rather long time to implement on a wide scale due to the edge cases that exist and need to be attended to before full implementation.

edit on 27-12-2018 by dubiousatworst because: cobol



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