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THE Electric Vehicle (EV) Thread pt 6

Discussions of conventional and alternative energy production technologies.

Re: THE Electric Vehicle (EV) Thread pt 6

Unread postby asg70 » Fri 19 May 2017, 12:30:38

Hawkcreek wrote:people are now becoming broke, along with being already decadent.

How does that work? You're trying to cast this purely as a matter of class warfare when it's also highly colored by the 4th wave of the industrial revolution.
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What's happening is the emergence of what science-fiction has been speculating about for the last half century or more. I don't know if it will be a better or worse world as a result but it's inevitable and we all have to adapt with it as best we can. Less Cormac McCarthy and more William Gibson for the next couple decades or so at least.
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Re: THE Electric Vehicle (EV) Thread pt 6

Unread postby Hawkcreek » Fri 19 May 2017, 12:54:20

asg70 wrote:
Hawkcreek wrote:people are now becoming broke, along with being already decadent.

How does that work?
You're trying to cast this purely as a matter of class warfare when it's also highly colored by the 4th wave of the industrial revolution.
What's happening is the emergence of what science-fiction has been speculating about for the last half century or more. I don't know if it will be a better or worse world as a result but it's inevitable and we all have to adapt with it as best we can. Less Cormac McCarthy and more William Gibson for the next couple decades or so at least.

I was trying to cast it as a matter of economic reality. Changes are driven by the economics, more than any other factor.
I bought my first bag phone because it enabled me to supervise field crews when I wasn't there. I could make changes to a materials order and save having to make two trips instead of one. It saved me money from the very beginning. Likewise, people use Uber because it saves them money.
FWIW, I've read almost everything William Gibson has written. I like it a lot, but most of the tech in his novels isn't here yet --- to the masses. The average person won't have direct neural interfaces for a while.
Yes, I am aware that we have already lost the class war, but that doesn't stop me from noticing when we get hit again by unexpected fire. I look for the reasons for changes, not just the effects.
Large changes to our system are driven by economics. Changes that are not economically beneficial die out, instead of burgeon out.
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Re: THE Electric Vehicle (EV) Thread pt 6

Unread postby Outcast_Searcher » Fri 19 May 2017, 14:35:57

Hawkcreek wrote:
pstarr wrote:Uber and lyft are nothing but (unregulated) taxis for the young urban swells . . .


To me that seems evident. If you go to any third world country, you have seen unregulated taxis for a long time. When people can't afford to keep their own car, they use the cheaper alternative.
Which brings up - why is the use of unregulated taxis becoming more prevalent in the US? Again obvious - it is the cheaper alternative.
So much for the idea of "growth" in the US. The only growth takes place in the bank accounts of the elite. Regardless of gov statistics, income for the peons has not been matching inflation for a long time. Go long on unregulated anything.
We are on our way to becoming a third world nation also.

Ah, the constant meme of economic doom.

So is that why we have cell phones, smart phones, GPS systems, expensive built in navigation systems made practical by GPS satellites, etc.? Not to mention the recent option of EV's, made available by other technology advancements.

It's not because people want such things. Or that they are willing to pay for such things (including much more than for a basic home hardwired black AT&T home phone) -- it's that they can't AFFORD things.

Nonsense. I now have a cheap cell phone, cheap home phone (DSL, as part of my cable package), cheap navigation system for the car (which I LOVE, portable, reliable, and a likely net cost of $1 a month or so over its projected useful life. Seemed MUCH more sensible to me than paying 10 times as much or more for a built-in one. Oh, and the map updates are free for life, unlike what many car companies do for their built-in nav systems. And I'd far rather take the practical, economically reasonable choice than the "cool, hip" expensive one. I prefer retiring 17 years early to having been part of the "in" crowd all my adult life by oh, about 90 billion miles.

Just like such OPTIONS, which people love, and people en masse can clearly afford -- first world Uber, Lyft, etc. rides are another CHOICE or convenience which many people, especially young, people choose to do. Not just because they can no longer "afford cars". Because let's face it -- in many big urban environnents, it makes no SENSE to own a car, even for a rich person. If mass transit is great and fairly cheap, parking is expensive and horrendous, and traffic is horrendous, how many people with a brain REALLY want to own a car? (If they want to go out of town, they rent).

But let's spin a yarn that says (while we're at it) that every technological invention since people left caves were because they could no longer "afford" to live as they did -- as long as it feeds the meme of doom, whether that makes any logical sense or not.
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Re: THE Electric Vehicle (EV) Thread pt 6

Unread postby eclipse » Fri 19 May 2017, 17:49:38

asg70 wrote:The whole paradigm of sending a large capacity vehicle like a bus or a train around a fixed route on a schedule imposes inconvenience on people who ride. It's sort of a 19th/20th century concept. It's dumb in the sense that the bus or train has no knowledge about the riders.

If it's that dumb, why are the Chinese building fast-rail projects, and why are their train stations shinier temples to transport than American airports?
Image

They don't know or care where the riders are coming from or where they are going. The riders are responsible for being at the right place at the right time and dealing with the slowdowns involved with the vehicle making pitstops to pick up and drop off more passengers rather than going straight from point A to B. It's also wasteful in the sense that these vehicles will keep making their circuits even if nobody winds up boarding.

You are wrong. I am a fan of convenience, but am still a fan of well designed townships and cities with fast rail + EV's at either end as the best way of dealing with traffic jams. Cities with the right kind of public transit don't have railway timetables you have to memorise in order to be there at the right time. You just turn up and catch the next train because it will be there shortly. Americans have forgotten that a new train station can sell the air above it to New Urbanist's in a public private partnership. The developers may even go halves on the subway line to get at this opportunity. Then they can create a town centre with eco-city apartments & commercial above the rail. There's some more density for you, even though most American metro areas already have the density for at least light rail! (Little known fact, the myth is that suburban sprawl is too spread out for rail, but it's just not true.

In the American context, the Institute of Traffic Engineers suggests that "9 dwellings per acre" is suitable density for light rail. That's about 5,000 people/square mile or 13,000 people/km2. Here's the report (PDF), look at pg. 93.
https://ntl.bts.gov/lib/jpodocs/repts_te/10803.pdf

Keep in mind that long-distance rail (Amtrak) is a very different type of service than local/intracity transit of the kind proposed in the Melbourne link. Also, density can be something that rail supports/attracts rather than a prerequisite. Also, looking at population-weighted density, the population density in the 366 metropolitan areas of the U.S. is 6,321 people per square mile, or ~16,000 per km2.
https://www.citylab.com/equity/2012/10/ ... tros/3450/

Once there is more density there, the buses and trams and trains will be fuller. At the station either-side of their fast-rail trip, robot-EV's can be there waiting to take them home. They might prefer to walk though, as Americans are beginning to see through the shallowness and superficiality of civic life that suburbia has given them. The idea that cars are more convenient is just retarded. Car based suburbia is one of the 'greatest misallocation of resources in the history of the world.' (Kunstler).

Wastes time: Suburbia creates traffic jams and wastes time. One of the greatest myths every fostered on us is the ‘convenience’ of a shopping mega-mall. We drive to the mall, drive around looking for parking, finally park, then after half an hour in the car still have to walk another 10 minutes through an oversized shopping mall to find the shop we are after! Compare that to New Urban neighbourhoods where almost everything you need is within an attractive 5 to 7 minute walk. By comparison you could walk your granny trolley to the shops, buy fresh groceries, have a short catch up with a local, and walk back home before a suburbanite would have entered their first shop in the mega-mall!

Wastes money: suburbia wastes money in buying cars, lost productivity in traffic jams, negative mental health and even physical health impacts. Suburban driving replaces New Urban walking, and raises our blood pressure and cancer rates. But it also raises our municipal rates because less people are sprawled out over more area, requiring more roads, more gutters, more pavements, more plumbing, more street wiring, more lighting: in short, more of everything that makes this town plan expensive and wasteful!

Creates social injustice: Suburban sprawl creates dependence on the car — the most expensive form of transport. This inconveniences the poor and infirm who cannot drive, or who must waste a disproportionate amount of money on taxis.

Destroys community: As I have already explained above, my pet hate is the effect on community. Shopping at a mega-mall that draws in 300,000 people is shopping with strangers. It’s a rare thing to meet someone you know. Suburbia isolates. There’s no ‘there’ there, no town centre, no soul.

Isn't this just a wonderful place worth caring about, worth hanging out in, worth spending time in to socialise and hand over a body of knowledge to the next generation that we call 'culture'?
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Dr James Hansen recommends breeder reactors that convert nuclear 'waste' into 1000 years of clean energy for America, and can charge all our light vehicles and generate "Blue Crude" for heavy vehicles.
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Re: THE Electric Vehicle (EV) Thread pt 6

Unread postby pstarr » Fri 19 May 2017, 19:09:15

what a brilliant post! I haven't seen this level of knowledge, competence and passion here at podotcom in a long time. congrats eclipse. :) Thanks for rekindling this important and lost subject.

Sadly it appears we will all go down in our lonely auto misery. Stupid people
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Re: THE Electric Vehicle (EV) Thread pt 6

Unread postby Hawkcreek » Fri 19 May 2017, 19:35:49

Outcast_Searcher wrote:But let's spin a yarn that says (while we're at it) that every technological invention since people left caves were because they could no longer "afford" to live as they did -- as long as it feeds the meme of doom, whether that makes any logical sense or not.

I was spinning the yarn that people make choices about their purchases. If a cheaper item can fill their needs, it is the one that perpetuates itself. If enough people didn't consider Uber a cheaper option than owning a car, Uber would die out.
Simple economic choices. Evidently you don't make those. It is true that some make choices strictly due to what they want, not what they can afford, but if they keep that up, they soon become broke-ass Americans. Oh wait, you think we don't have many of those.
Spin whatever type of yarn you like to use to pretend that everything is rosy in the economic picture in the US, and that things like Uber have not sprung up due to economics. I don't care. I will continue to make selections that fit my financial needs.
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Re: THE Electric Vehicle (EV) Thread pt 6

Unread postby Shaved Monkey » Fri 19 May 2017, 21:58:22

BYD the biggest battery manufacturer in the world

China's BYD has overtaken Tesla in the battery and electric car business
These days BYD has a single battery factory near the southern city of Shenzhen that is more than eight times larger than Musk's in the Nevada desert.
"Tesla has done a great job in branding and image ... we really appreciate that," says Liu Xue-liang, the Asia-Pacific general manager of BYD's auto sales division.

That is the most backhanded of compliment – the inference being BYD is focused on the performance of its batteries, while Tesla is more concerned about branding and design.
This idea of so called "real things" sums up BYD, which, despite producing more electric vehicles and batteries than anyone else in the world, is barely known outside China.

Its anonymity is partly due to refreshingly bad PR.
The lack of Silicon-Valley sheen has a lot to do with BYD's founder Wang, a lab coat-wearing chemist who flies economy and appears to care little for the amenity of his headquarters, which is a mixture of industrial brutalism and corporate bland.
Yet the scrunge impression evaporates when you enter BYD's latest battery factory, a short drive from the main campus. From the outside, it looks like any other low-end factory across China.

Inside, the 8.6-gigawatt factory, which spans five buildings of four floors each, is 99 per cent automated. Robots hand components to robots in near silence, as preprogrammed cranes move batteries around the factory floor.
"Our goal is full automation," he says. "This factory is the backbone of the company."

Not that any of it can be photographed.
The shambolic guided tour goes into overdrive when it comes to secrecy.
This is how BYD keeps the world's eyes off a factory set over 10 hectares that produces enough lithium-iron phosphate batteries each year to power 335,000 standard sedans, equivalent to a third of all the new vehicles sold in Australia during 2016.
The ability to reach such scale so quickly is a demonstration of the so-called "China Model" of production.
It's also allowed BYD to diversify away from car and mobile phone batteries to produce everything from electric buses and garbage trucks to forklifts and, most recently, a monorail system.

"If it has wheels we want to put a battery in it," says Liu.

The company has also moved into energy storage, with small household systems and large-scale battery technology to support electricity grids during peak periods.

In mid-March, BYD said it would bid on one of Australia's largest grid-scale battery storage projects, in South Australia, being hastily installed after blackouts crippled the state last summer.

But unlike Tesla or Zen Energy, chaired by economist Ross Garnaut, BYD's name has hardly been mentioned in relation to the project, even though it issued a press release on the subject.

"The company is confident it can meet South Australia's requirements and demands," BYD said, noting it was the world's largest supplier of rechargeable batteries.

"BYD is now setting the battery price in North America, because of its scale," says one person who works for a major utility in the US and asked not to be named.

"Everyone else has come down to meet BYD's price."

45,000 so-called new-energy cars being registered in Shanghai alone in 2016, a 74 per cent increase on the previous year, according to government figures.

It plans a 48-fold increase in the number of charging points nationwide to 4.8 million by 2020, by which time it forecasts there will be 5 million electric vehicles on Chinese roads, up from a million today.
While Tesla is focused on selling direct to consumers, BYD is increasingly looking towards mass transport, believing its products are best suited to fleets, including buses, taxis, garbage trucks and forklifts.

"Tesla's products are for the super-rich, which is only a very small group, our products are mainly for mass transportation," says Liu.

http://www.afr.com/business/transport/a ... 517-gw6wa1
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Re: THE Electric Vehicle (EV) Thread pt 6

Unread postby eclipse » Fri 19 May 2017, 23:13:04

pstarr wrote:what a brilliant post! I haven't seen this level of knowledge, competence and passion here at podotcom in a long time. congrats eclipse. :) Thanks for rekindling this important and lost subject.
Sadly it appears we will all go down in our lonely auto misery. Stupid people


Thanks! After listening to hours of Kunstler, I became convinced that even if EV's came to the rescue, nothing was going to save us from the blandness of suburbia except some radical public education campaigns. If you note my signature, I'm convinced some pretty unpopular energy sources can actually supply all the energy we need to maintain suburbia. Sadly, nothing about the move to New Urbanism is inevitable! But I've found an emotional hook to describe New Urbanism, especially for the girls. It's the show the Gilmore Girls. My wife made me watch the Gilmore Girls, as I'd forced all sorts of suspense and action thrillers on her for years. What hit me about the Gilmore Girls is the sheer nostalgia the show raises about small town living, and why. It became the basis of my New Urbanism page, called "New Urbanism and the Gilmore Girls". I copied some of my summary material in from there, but nothing beats Kunstler's ranting TED talk! 8) (Link on my page).
Dr James Hansen recommends breeder reactors that convert nuclear 'waste' into 1000 years of clean energy for America, and can charge all our light vehicles and generate "Blue Crude" for heavy vehicles.
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Re: THE Electric Vehicle (EV) Thread pt 6

Unread postby pstarr » Fri 19 May 2017, 23:59:12

I was heavily involved in the New Urbanism eclipse. I co-developed Marsh Commons Cohousing in Arcata, Ca. I love the cohousing model, it can be sort of a seed for a community revival.
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Re: THE Electric Vehicle (EV) Thread pt 6

Unread postby eclipse » Sat 20 May 2017, 02:52:14

Awesome! Then you are my hero, I'm just an activist, not an actual New Urban designer.

A little off topic, but I'm trying to compare public transport like light rail and trains versus the convenience and seduction of future robot-taxi-cabs. I've become convinced from many articles that we could be heading into a weird future where hardly anyone owns cars, but everyone still uses them because it's far, far cheaper to just spot-hire the robot-taxi-cab you need rather than buy a car that sits in your driveway or a parking garage depreciating 95% of the time instead of actually being used. When you're not paying the salary of the driver, a robot-taxi-cab just becomes a piece of equipment you're hiring for a short trip on an as-you-need it basis. There's some real convenience there, and there are some positives. But it scares me. It makes me think we'll cement in suburbia forever.

Hence the slightly tacky emotional appeal in my writing about New Urbanism, and appealing to Jimmy Fallon saying he'd move to Stars Hollow in an instant if only it were real. I try to argue that we could rebuild town squares a little like that, but with public transport and New Urbanism surrounding it rather than suburbia.

Here's my 3 questions.

1. In the American context, the Institute of Traffic Engineers suggests that "9 dwellings per acre" is suitable density for light rail. Page 93 of this PDF. https://ntl.bts.gov/lib/ What does that actually work out in people per mile / people per km square?

2. How high would New Urban towers have to be above a new subway station to justify heavy rail rather than light rail? Have you seen any numbers around this, or do you have other strategies for increasing New Urbanism?

3. How are we going to market public double-decker heavy rail or even light rail in an era of super-cheap electric robot cars, and are New Urbanism and rail inevitably linked? For instance, I wrote on my New Urbanism summary page that my local suburb actually has many of the ingredients for a Stars-Hollow-esque town square, except sadly the shops and schools and churches and parks are all spread out, instead of the shops and services all wrapped around a cute town park. Can you imagine developers building such a town square if cheap-robot-cars become the future, just because such places connect us to place and each other? I'm looking for some hope here. EG: Even if suburbia surrounded such a place, and robot cars were driving us to a town square instead of us sensibly and for our own good walking to it, would developers even consider such a model of town deployment in an era of the for-hire car?
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Re: THE Electric Vehicle (EV) Thread pt 6

Unread postby vtsnowedin » Sat 20 May 2017, 07:22:04

eclipse wrote:1. In the American context, the Institute of Traffic Engineers suggests that "9 dwellings per acre" is suitable density for light rail. Page 93 of this PDF. https://ntl.bts.gov/lib/ What does that actually work out in people per mile / people per km square?

At three persons per dwelling that comes out to 17,280 per square mile if there are no deductions for roads etc. (640 acres per square mile). Hong Kong type densities.
2. How high would New Urban towers have to be above a new subway station to justify heavy rail rather than light rail? Have you seen any numbers around this, or do you have other strategies for increasing New Urbanism?


Look to Philadelphia at 12,000 per square mile for a model of high density housing.
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Re: THE Electric Vehicle (EV) Thread pt 6

Unread postby asg70 » Sat 20 May 2017, 10:35:20

eclipse wrote:If it's that dumb, why are the Chinese building fast-rail projects, and why are their train stations shinier temples to transport than American airports?
Image


For one thing, rail projects in countries other than the US do not face the same regulatory and eminent domain issues. China says they want to lay track down and they simply eject anything and everybody in its wake.

At the same time, the rise of personal autos in China has created the worst traffic jams the world has ever seen. So they face enormous problems of scale which trump the desires of individuals for drive-anywhere-from-point-a-to-b convenience.

In my area there is a rail expansion project with cost estimates that are skyrocketing. Public works in general in the US is completely broken just like most facets of government.

eclipse wrote:You are wrong. I am a fan of convenience, but am still a fan of well designed townships and cities with fast rail + EV's at either end as the best way of dealing with traffic jams.


Write out as many macro-level prescriptions as you like. The way people live will not simply reorganize themselves according to your fantasies.

I used to get swept up in all these utopian ideas but then I had to come back to reality about how people are really deciding to live. You can spend the rest of your life getting up to the podium and evangelizing new urbanism, repeat the same talking points again and again, and not make an impact. Same deal with pushing for ANY favored lifestyle like various strict diet regimes or meditation or whatever. Culture has a tremendous amount of inertia and simply pounding the podium to try to convince people that a different lifestyle is "better" for them tends to fall on deaf ears, let alone sounding condescending.

The path of least resistance is to sort of "patch" over culture as-is. The robo-taxi approach is just that, mated with the popularization of rooftop solar panels in the 'burbs.

This is the difference between ideas that only wind up in powerpoint presentations and books and ideas that actually become reality.

Pragmatism is sorely lacking in doomer circles as people tend to spend most of their time in their imaginations.
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Re: THE Electric Vehicle (EV) Thread pt 6

Unread postby pstarr » Sat 20 May 2017, 10:53:23

"doomer circle" and "robotaxi" no content just insult no response to the measured energy savings of simple freight trains compared to trucks.

Hollow response grandstanding without interest or facts mere insults and red herrings (diet regimes? AYFKM?)
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Re: THE Electric Vehicle (EV) Thread pt 6

Unread postby asg70 » Sat 20 May 2017, 11:09:44

Deleted off topic, off-color text.
Last edited by Ferretlover on Sat 20 May 2017, 18:15:01, edited 1 time in total.
Reason: Deleted off topic, off-color text.
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Re: THE Electric Vehicle (EV) Thread pt 6

Unread postby Hawkcreek » Sat 20 May 2017, 11:13:29

What's wrong with calling an automated taxi a robotaxi? Sounds ok to me. Kind of cool, actually. Maybe call them RT's for short.
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Re: THE Electric Vehicle (EV) Thread pt 6

Unread postby Hawkcreek » Sat 20 May 2017, 11:16:51

Shaved Monkey wrote:BYD the biggest battery manufacturer in the world

Thanks for all the good info, Shaved. I must admit, I had never heard of them, either.
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Re: THE Electric Vehicle (EV) Thread pt 6

Unread postby pstarr » Sat 20 May 2017, 11:17:15

robotaxis?
Image
I don't think so
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Re: THE Electric Vehicle (EV) Thread pt 6

Unread postby Hawkcreek » Sat 20 May 2017, 11:22:26

At least we established that the status of the word is just a matter of opinion. :)
I like it.
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Re: THE Electric Vehicle (EV) Thread pt 6

Unread postby asg70 » Sat 20 May 2017, 13:40:52

pstarr wrote:robotaxis?...I don't think so


Considering you don't think they'll ever even materialize, why do you even care about the terminology?
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Re: THE Electric Vehicle (EV) Thread pt 6

Unread postby pstarr » Sat 20 May 2017, 13:42:38

asg70 wrote:
pstarr wrote:robotaxis?...I don't think so


Considering you don't think they'll ever even materialize, why do you even care about the terminology?

they can't materialize. Siri doesn't have a drivers license yet. She can't even find her bottle without help.
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