The challenge is not building it.
The required technology either already exists or is within our
grasp. The challenge will not be convincing people. Once
the system is demonstrated, people will complain if they don't have
it. The challenge is moving to a better transportation BEFORE
we cause irreparable damage to the environment. We need
experts in transportations to make the necessary calculations to
validate the idea. We need Lucas or Spielberg to make movies
that show us the way, just like science fiction has always done.
We need DARPA to perform their magic once more...to hold yet another
challenge, this time to develop the most efficient transportation
It's easy to imagine that mankind will
not be driving automobiles a thousand years from now. Or even 200
years from now. But why wait when we can do it now? Given the limitations
of our existing transportation system, why not reap the
benefits of a better one now?
So where do we go from here?
Clearly PRT is an undertaking of vast proportions. Much R&D will be
required to finalize countless aspects of the design before committing
to one particular specification. Ideally funding would be made available such that the major engineering colleges could
pair with appropriate industries (automotive, software, etc)
to develop competing designs. Fortunately the idea of
individualized vehicles running on tracks is not new. A handful of
very dedicated individuals have been pushing various PRT (Personal Rapid Transit)
concepts for many years. They invariably differ from PRTProject in scope since they're designed to coexist
with the automobile rather than replace it...running at airports or down
major thoroughfares, but the good news is that MUCH of their work
applies directly to this concept.
To see more of these concepts, visit the
Great PRT reference:
Finally, attempting to predict the future of
transportation is always risky business. Take a look at this wonderful movie
by Disney from way back in 1958...
While most of their predictions seem outlandish in
hindsight, the idea of fully automated transportation is inescapable.
If you have feedback on the concept, feel free to contact me...
For more about me, click