Last week, Waymo, Google’s autonomous vehicle sister company, somewhat quietly announced that its newest fleet of cars would be able to do a million trips a day by 2020. Atlantic tech writer Alexis Madrigal wrote about how that would radically change America:
2020 is not some distant number. It’s hardly even a projection. By laying out this time line yesterday, Waymo is telling the world: Get ready, this is really happening. This is autonomous driving at scale, and not in five years or 10 years or 50 years, but in two years or less.
… With Waymo’s most recent announcement, now is the time to think through these larger questions. They are bigger and harder because they cannot be answered by technological proof. They involve power—Alphabet’s power, the power of labor, the power of local governments to control their jurisdictions.
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