Instant Drone Delivery: How a Former Google Lab Will Disrupt the Ownership Economy | Astro Teller
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Instant Drone Delivery: How a Former Google Lab Will Disrupt the Ownership Economy | Astro Teller

The unmanned aerial vehicle project at X,
which we call Wing, has as its aspiration to remove the bulk of the remaining friction
from how we move physical things around in the physical world, particularly the so-called
last mile problem. If you look at the history of how physical
things have been moved around in the physical world, every time a chunk of the remaining
friction was removed from that process, boats, planes, trains, the automobile, the Pony Express,
the mail system, every one of these things as we got more organized and removed cost
and complexity from how physical things got moved around in the world the world became
so different that it was impossible before hand to even predict how different and how
much better it would be on the other side of that introduction. We take for granted the remaining friction
as though it’s natural and will continue forever. If you could have anything that would fit
in a bread box brought to you within one or two minutes, you still have to pay for the
thing that’s in the breadbox but it could be brought to you nearly for free, then our
world would be radically different. Those batteries that are sitting in a drawer
in your house or apartment right now discharging, you have those batteries, you’re wasting the
planet because you think you might need a few of those batteries before they fully discharge
on some Christmas morning or something. But if you believed you could have any shaped
battery you want just in the moment you need it you wouldn’t bother holding all those batteries. You probably have a hammer in your house or
apartment. Why do you have that hammer? You almost never use it. And we all have to have a hammer for the occasional
moment when we want the hammer. But we could probably share one hammer around
10,000 of us. Think how much richer the world would be if
we could have that. How are we going to make it so that you could
have the hammer just appear within a moment or two when you want it? You say I want to hammer, you get a cup of
coffee at the most and the hammer is there. And our proposal for how to do that is that
you can make small vehicles that fly through the air quietly and very safely and bring
to you whatever you want. Our prediction is that at first society will
adopt these for the use of delivering food. Food is something that almost everybody uses
and that they use on a very regular basis. There’s already a very robust food delivery
market and people express an interest in having a lot more delivered to them, with respect
to food. So that is likely to be the early adoption
of this technology. But the long run promise of being able to
move things around inside of cities and suburban areas in particular without having to create
more traffic congestion, without of the carbon footprint that comes from large trucks moving
packages around, without the sound and safety problems produced by large trucks moving around
our city, all of those problems can be solved by flying what you want what you need right
now to you through the air. We’re public about the fact that we did more
than a thousand flights last year in Wing and I would like to see at least 100 times
that many this year and 100 times as many the year after that and I don’t think that
that’s at all out of the question. There are regulatory conversations to be had
and demonstrations of safety to be proven as we step through this process in the United
States and in other countries. And it’s important that we push hard on the
technology but also work thoughtfully and responsibly with the regulators to demonstrate
the safety and to build their confidence in what we’re doing as we take each incremental

65 thoughts on “Instant Drone Delivery: How a Former Google Lab Will Disrupt the Ownership Economy | Astro Teller

  1. "herald the end of private ownership in favor of a sharing economy" HAHAHAHHAHAHAHAHAHAHA. Funniest shit ever. Thanks for the laughs, mate.

  2. So who owns the hammer? Are we paying to rent it? Wouldn't it be easier and cheaper to own the hammer? I agree with most of what you're saying, but I don't see people consuming less in the future.

  3. I dislike the idea of waste, and equally dislike the idea of forcing sharing on people, but this guy does no such thing.
    Dear commenters, you are projecting communists onto entrepreneurs. I don't know what argument you lost to a Marxist earlier today to feel the need to do that, but please rewatch the short clip and reconsider your comment.

  4. Are those batteries just sitting in the drone's drawer in case one Christmas morning it wakes up and finds out someone wants to buy them?

  5. What about the people who work for delivery companies, food delivery services etc? What happens to their jobs?

  6. The world is broken and you're trying to fix shipping. THE ONE THING IN EXISTANCE THAT YOU CAN ALWAYS RELY ON TO GET YOUR PACKAGE OR LETTER. Name another man made thing that everybody relies on that works as good as the post office. This is why Donald Trump is president. This isn't big thinking, this is fucking retarded.

  7. Sounds cheaper and faster to just have your own hammer.
    1. Hammer costs ~$5
    2. Takes up little space
    3. Takes ~1 minute to retrieve hammer from tool box
    4. No hassle about returning hammer
    5. If accidentally need to reuse hammer, don't need to recall a company to deliver it again.

  8. I find it strange how people scream Communism! when the government owns everything and you're dependent on them. But when giant corporations own everything and you depend on them for your survival, everything's perfectly copacetic.

  9. I have no problem with sharing, as we basically do this with rentals. (using backhoe, tillers, many tools, cars, rv's, etc) but I have a huge problem with low flying shit in the air becoming normalized. the noise, possible emissions, privacy concerns, questions of responsibility, and net energy expenditure (how much energy are we actually saving dependent on how far the hammer travels) make me very resistant to this as a solution. Also, it implies that not having things is better, but if we do that we all must live on the edge of need with the firm belief that someone else will fulfill our needs. I think instant wish fulfillment is probably not the best for us, living dependent on a service like this is worrisome when you imagine emergencies, and I don't know how you'd accomplish it without having unmanned drones killing birds and flying near my windows…but maybe we can consider these things and see where we go from here. otherwise I will continue borrowing my dad's tools and lending out my lawnmower.

  10. Expanded out to the whole population, this would become incredibly obnoxious and impractical. Think about all the drones we'd have buzzing around the neighborhood at all times if everyone were requesting random tools and products whenever they needed them. There wouldn't be enough drones to handle the demand, and it would be much slower than necessary. Drones flying _everywhere_, all the time? No thanks. I'd rather wait for the invention of the replicator.

  11. It's a nice idea but what happens when you want the hammer but can't afford it because the price has risen significantly since last time? With this idea it leaves far more people open to things like this.

  12. I like the ideea of a sharing economy, but like how.einsteins theory of relativity doesnt apply to quantum mechanics. This sharing via drones doesnt apply to the real world. I strongly believe it will be cheaper and faster to 3d print a hammer than to get one delivered to me. Imagine thousands of drones buzzing around neighborhoods to deliver batteries and other fumb objects. It will be chaos.

  13. …you aren't losing your right to own hammers people. But for people who use hammers like once a year, or less you could easily be fine with paying 5$ to rent a hammer, or like 20$ for a toolkit and do your project for the month, then return to your life not needing any of those tools for a long time.

  14. You fag. I wouldn't share any of my hammers with people who probably can't use them properly.

    Have you ever lent out a tool, to a tool and gotten it back slightly broken? Killing should be acceptable in these instances, to improve the human stock.

  15. What if this army of drones became so intelligent that the drone delivering my hammer would want to chat with me, say about politics. That would mean the end of life on earth!

  16. Start with complete digitization and nationalization of the information economy. We still waste so much space on discs and disc containers, it's absurd.

  17. Do we have batteries capable of accomplishing this? Every quad copter I've seen has pretty short battery life.

  18. The problem is not the delivery of consumer goods, its the fact that we don't need the vast majority of them, we just buy them because 'we can'; perhaps that ideology needs to be addressed instead.

  19. I'm not a fan of relinquishing my own means for the sake of heightened convenience. Nor do I like the idea of human participation being the last bit of "friction" to be removed from the system.

  20. well, i for one wish ya luck.. most folks'll likely bash the shit out of your idea, or point out the flaws in your statement (yeah i see'm as well), but i for one could definitely appreciate getting my deliveries by uav..

  21. Aggregate that with blockchain and you have hammers that own itselves!

    This wasn't a future i could predict.

  22. Lots of legislature needed but imagine an app: Catalog as for sale or rent all the items in your house that can be drone – moved. I need a hammer. I open my app and do a local search for a hammer. I select a neighbor who is availible. A drone goes to their house and picks it up and delivers it to me. The neighbor is paid and so is the app. Also, friend accounts to share for free with the app getting paid via subscription.

  23. guys stop bashing at the hammer idea,it was just a example for many small stuff that noone need all the time,which may be shared and use more effectivly throgh drone delivery.
    you can stil buy a hammer if you want…..

  24. It won't be immigrants anymore who are taking the jobs, it will be machines that will be taking them. If you really wanted to end the high unemployment in a short amount of time, take out the machines and computers in the workplaces that before required many people to work on. For every computer there could have been 10 people and for machine you could have had 20 people. But corporations only care about faster efficiency and not the labor force.

  25. Introducing the drone cookie share!
    People in the community each donate an ingredient to a volunteer baker via drone.
    After the baking is complete, the baker divides a share of the cookie batch into each waiting drone and send them off.
    The baker gets cookies at the expense of labor. The donors get cookies at the expense of ingredients.

  26. I like this guy and his ideas, but it doesn't apply to everything. I appreciate reducing the forcast and resourse allocation, but this is just an extention of JIT manufacturing, which is great for the manufacturer, but crappy for the owner when something breaks on their new BMW motorcycle and they have to wait days and weeks or more because the manufacturer wants to reduce inventory on parts because JIT/lean manufacturing saves them money. Ultimately, who should a company serve? A system or the customer? It's a win-win when we get both, but that doesn't always happen as executives look after their own interests first. If someone wants to create a resource share, that's fine, but as a rule/must do, no.

  27. wouldnt unmanned cars be a much more efficient use of energy than hauling them through the air? the cost of maintaining drones flying out miles to people wherever people are would never be less than a cost of a cheap hammer

  28. notice how no one is ensuring these things have safety, on the level of passenger planes on them? Flying overhead with a hammer and power cuts out, poor bugger on the street gets creamed so you can save a few cents. Same with self-driving cars, companies are trying to get there before they can have safety regulations imposed so they can set the narrative that they are not liable. I am so looking forward to being killed by some drone that loses an engine some Amazon can layoff all their delivery people.

  29. A drawback to drone delivery systems is their dependence on fair weather, one consequence of this may be that places like Seattle (rain) or Chicago (wind) will be disadvantaged to cities with more favorable weather for drones, such as Phoenix or Salt Lake City.

  30. this only works in good weather. same theme could be produced by people living in large building with air tubes. more concern to me is data and idea sharing. one small idea for man could be a giant leap for mankind, but people aren't that objective in a competitive world. nobody likes to share. craftsmen will always get used to having their own hammer, and produce better for that ownership. a major obstacle is breaking bad habits, but until incentives are good enough, change is unlikely. moderate generational changes seem more practical, as people resist coercion. blah blah blah

  31. The battery example is even worse than the hammer one. Having a drone deliver you batteries is not an environmental improvement to disposable batteries sitting in a drawer. Getting people to use rechargeable batteries instead of batteries that turn into garbage on a regular basis is a much lower hanging piece of fruit. It ACTUALLY reduces the material being disposed of (the amount of batteries getting thrown away because they discharged on their own is pathetically small compared to the ones being thrown away after they've been used) and getting people to switch doesn't involve the creation of huge new industry with its own additional environmental problems.

  32. Nope. The reason we have more batteries is the profit motive. We buy more batteries than we need because of pricing models which favour businesses (whose purpose is to make a profit) more than the consumer.

  33. So the skies above us will be swarming with tens of thousands of little quad-copters 24/7. Fuck just staring at the moon or the sunset or even a cloud without a drone potentially in your field of view. That doesnt sound like fun to me no matter how easy it will be for excited yuppies to get their J.I.T. hammer when they need one.

  34. what if someone shoots them out of the ski for selfish reasons… even if they have locators or w/e it could happen and if so what happens then when people are not getting what they ordered and what not… just one thing that could happen…

  35. the most important change this system will bring is the shift from quantity to quality.

    right now, companies produce tons of low-quality goods for us to burn through as quickly as possible so we have to go restock them.
    this is because we obtain ownership of a product once we pay for it, and with that, the company that produced it couldn't care less about its quality. actually, it is beneficial to the company for the product to break down sooner than later so the customer needs to buy another one. that's what birthed planned obsolescence…

    with this subscription model system though, where ownership of the product stays with the company, it will be in the best interest of the company to provide products of the highest possible quality instead.

  36. that has got to be the most retarded bullshit i have ever seen. And i have seen it in a channel called big think.

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