Behind the Scenes of a Transportation Tech Start-Up

It takes a certain amount of chutzpah to compete with the likes of Google, but that’s what a little start-up named Conveyal is doing. The firm creates digital tools to help transport authorities better communicate the wide array of available mobility options. Its new product is similar in functionality to Google Maps and the many consumer-based …

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Transit-friendly Dupont

A Social Media Playbook for Changing Commuting Behaviors

Can social media be used to change a person’s commuting behavior or the way we design cities and transportation systems? There’s growing research to show how behaviors are influenced by networks, and specifically how social media can cause behavior changes that benefit society (such as decreasing energy consumption). The same principles, done correctly, could no doubt help change …

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Technology “Hacks” Solve Real-World Cycling Problems

The bicycle was created in the 1800s, but technology is keeping it relevant with “hacks” – or solutions – designed to get more people to use bike helmets, count ridership better, and reduce the obstacles keeping people from biking. These and other innovations were on display at the latest Transportation Techies event: Bike Hack Night …

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Fully Driverless Cars Will Be Ready in 2060, Report Finds

The impact of autonomous – driverless – vehicles is still a ways in the future, according to projections made in a new report by Todd Litman of the Victoria Transport Policy Institute (VTPI). As for autonomous vehicles’ impacts on traffic congestion, automobile accidents, and car ownership, the VTPI report projects that driverless vehicles will have only a modest impact …

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Wearable Tech Will Make Our Cities More Walkable

Apple’s announcement in September regarding the 2015 launch of the Apple Watch has some pundits wondering if the tech giant can do for wearable tech what it did for the MP3 player and smartphone: create a must-have consumer device out of a fledgling, yet promising, product line. I think the more interesting question is, if the Apple Watch is …

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Idea for Smarter Transit Fares Wins GMU Competition

Transit would be better served if the pay-per-ride and unlimited fare schemes that currently dominate were expanded to include more fine-tuned pricing structures similar to those offered by cell phone companies. That was the idea that won the recent second annual Outside the Box transportation conference and competition at George Mason University’s (GMU’s) School of …

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Gamification, Technology, and Improving Transit Rider Satisfaction

What’s the current state of the rider experience? Are transportation systems meeting the demands and expectations of the general public? These questions were posed to a panel of speakers at a plenary session of the Mobility Lab-sponsored Innovation in Public Policy Summit. Technology – in particular the power of information – was shown to be a …

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Carma Takes Swipe at Uber, Lyft & Sidecar

The first day of the two-day Innovation in Mobility Public Policy Summit in Washington D.C. was “bike heavy,” according to one participant. With the conversation clearly revolving around bikesharing systems, participants and speakers had to dance around the subject on many people’s minds: Uber, Lyft, and Sidecar – the transportation network companies (TNCs) everyone either loves or …

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What are Cities Trying to Tell People?

[By Tom Fairchild and Paul Goddin for Mobility Lab. Published on April 30, 2014] “Does a city speak?” This provocative question – posed by Saskia Sassen (pictured above) – opened the recent Mobilities in Cities: From Visible to Invisible conference at Columbia University. It’s hard to deny that a city has life, but does it live and communicate? Sassen has …

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Redefining Uber: Why the Term Rideshare Doesn’t Fit

[By Paul Goddin for Mobility Lab, published on April 17, 2014] Uber and its ilk are cool and disruptive technologies, and our position at Mobility Lab is that additional transportation choices are always a good thing for consumers. But Uber’s habit of calling itself a “rideshare company” is getting out of hand. Neither Uber, Sidecar, nor …

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