Dec 24, 2008 @ 16:29
I should come back to gathering these.
Dec 24, 2008 @ 16:29
I should come back to gathering these.
From Sep 26, 2008 @ 14:29
What was I thinking?
asisted Living Robotics
bio-discovery driven engineering
Some special event visitors had a negative experience with downtown Milwaukee parking:
Jim Kirk was searching for a place to park around 7 p.m. Sunday near the Bradley Center when three men braving the evening wind and rain ushered him into a gravel lot at 324 W. Juneau Ave.
One man collected the cash – $10 – and the others used yellow wands to direct parkers into neat rows, Kirk said.
About an hour and a half later, as Kirk and his wife enjoyed the Trans-Siberian Orchestra concert, a city parking checker ticketed dozens of vehicles parked in the lot. The city wrote at least $4,000 worth of tickets at the lot through the day.
Kirk and other concert-goers returned to their cars two hours later and found tickets ranging from $30 to $40 but no parking attendants.
The fake parking attendants didn’t have authority to rent out the lot – even though they tried hard to dress the part, donning vests and money aprons often worn by other parking attendants in town.[Link: JSONLINE]
Well that sucks for them. Wait though, why is this problem? Why not let people park there legally?
The land is owned by Milwaukee County and not designated for public use. The city’s Department of Public Works has been asked to patrol the lot to keep out illegal parkers, said Cecilia Gilbert, a spokeswoman for the city agency.
Let me propose some ideas that Milwaukee’s Socialist-legacy bureaucrats didn’t consider for this unused land:
– Lease out the lot for special event parking for a fixed price
– Lease out the lot for special event parking for for a % of the take
– Hire some P/T workers to run the lots for the City/County for an hourly wage + % of the take.
– Let charity groups run the lot for fundraising (chosen by random lottery) on a per event basis for a % of the take.
– Improved downtown parking experience for visitors (i.e. the consumers coming to spend money in Milwaukee)
– Increased non-taxpayer revenue for the City/County
– Some additional income for a few City/County residents
None. Zip. Nada.
Just a few stray thoughts…
Housing – 30% of income for Housing? Jeez.
Personal Transportation – Where is my $5k car?
K12 Education – Too much money, too little results, little customization, wasted human and material capital. There has to be better ways.
Post-K12 Education – Cost are out of control, benefits are overstated. There has to be better approaches.
Government – It shouldn’t be as intrusive, nor should it cost as much.
…here at CNN:
First, America must substantially improve our education system. We’ve fallen behind, particularly in areas of math and science.
Second, we’re going to have to remedy our disproportionate health care cost disadvantage. America spends far more than any other nation as a percent of GDP on health care. This effectively is an enormous tax on the economy and on our businesses.
Third, our national debt is excessive and our entitlement obligations pass a massive burden onto the next generation.
Fourth, tax and regulatory policies weigh down our ability to compete. Specifically, our products carry an embedded tax which makes American goods less competitive abroad and at home.
Fifth, America’s apparent retrenchment from the concept of open, free and fair trade could put us further behind other nations that are aggressively seeking trade relations around the world.
Sixth, our lack of an effective energy policy drains our economy by approximately half a trillion dollars a year.
And, finally, the blow that Wall Street has taken may make us less competitive in financing entrepreneurship.
This is really a list of problems, not solutions. It is a start though.
They are looking for contractors to ‘develop a software/hardware suite that would enable a multi-robot team, together with a human operator, to search for and detect a non-cooperative human subject. The main research task will involve determining the movements of the robot team through the environment to maximize the opportunity to find the subject … Typical robots for this type of activity are expected to weigh less than 100 Kg and the team would have three to five robots.
There will be commercial uses as well:
They note that the robots would “have potential commercialization within search and rescue, fire fighting, reconnaissance, and automated biological, chemical and radiation sensing with mobile platforms”.
I am thinking there are uses in crowd control (permanent and special events), school security, mall security, truant control, critical infrastructure security. How about trash removal, street maintenance (crack filling, pothle filling). How about electrical wiring and cabling management inside walls of buildings?
There are business opportunities here. Not just in making the robots, but in created business to provide managed services – call them Robot Service Providers (RSP).
Entrepreneurs will (and are) noting this. Robot Service Providers will be a common business in the future. I would like to be part of it.
We will get out this current financial mess – not by government fiat, but because entrepreneurs and smart corporate executives and hard-working everyday people will innovate us out of it. They will come up with the new financial instruments that restructure this debt, the new technologies that will generate the wealth to make up for this loss (as they did after 9/11) and ultimately create more jobs than are right now being lost.
And if Washington really wanted to help Americans (and there is no indication right now that it does) it would, the instant it passes the bail-out bill, get to work not adding more regulations in response to this crisis, but stripping away the destructive ones we created after the last big one. And a good place to start would be Sarbanes-Oxley, which brilliantly keeps wealth out of the hands of regular workers (by keeping start-up companies from going public), all while costing, by my reckoning, $200 billion over the last six years.
If the last two weeks have taught us anything, it is that Washington is not going to get fixed, no matter who is elected. The world is moving on. Seven hundred thousand people are joining, via the Web, the Global Economy each day. If the prognosticators are right, we are now only 1000 days or so from crucial turning points in the world economy (the next billion consumers, universal wireless broadband, nanotech, thinking machines, etc.)
A new era – with new rules, new winners and new losers — is coming up on us fast, and we need to get ready for it right now. Our national leaders just had their chance to prove they were prepared for this new era – and they have failed miserably. We now have to look elsewhere for leadership… and quickly.
Amen. Read it all.