Accessible Public Transportation And Housing, A Need For People With Disabilities In Major Cities (9-1-18)

Image credit: UN Photo

Even though over six billion people—nearly one billion of whom will have disabilities— are expected to live in urban centers by 2050, many of the world’s major urban cities have a long way to go before their infrastructure becomes inclusive for people with disabilities.

As the world’s population ages, in 2050, more than 20 percent will be 60 or older, making urban accessibility an urgent need, according to a report by the Disability Inclusive and Accessible Urban Development Network (DIAUD).

Read Full Story Here (via Nation of Change)

CAN UBER AND LYFT BECOME WHEELCHAIR ACCESSIBLE?

(Photo: Mike Coppola/Getty Images for Lyft)

In early August, the New York City council voted to forbid Uber, Lyft, and other ride-sharing companies from adding any more cars to their fleets for the next 12 months. New York is the first American city to enact such a cap, though other cities are considering similar actions. The action took place amid the specter of six suicides by taxi drivers over the last six months and general concerns about traffic congestion in the city. Lawmakers sought to check the unregulated growth of the services and study just how many vehicles were actually required to provide appropriate transportation options during the pause.

There was, however, one important caveat to the bill that has gone largely unreported thus far: Uber and Lyft are still welcome to add as many wheelchair-accessible vehicles as they like. According to advocates for accessible transit in the future, this exception sets up a future not only for better transportation, but also for innovation around affordable wheelchair-accessible vehicle design.

Read Full Story Here (via Pacific Standard)

How Do You Get People To Trust Autonomous Vehicles? This Company Is Giving Them ‘Virtual Eyes.’ (8-29-18)

In an effort to create trust between pedestrians and self-driving vehicles, Jaguar Land Rover has developed a driverless pod with eyes that signal the vehicle’s intent to human observers. (Jaguar Land Rover) (Jaguar Landrover)

One of the biggest challenges facing car companies developing driverless vehicles has little do with sophisticated robotics or laser technology.

Instead, they must figure out how to engineer something far more amorphous but no less important: human trust, the kind that is communicated when human drivers and pedestrians make eye contact at a crosswalk.

Surveys indicate that large portions of the public harbor deep reservations about the safety of self-driving technology, so Jaguar Land Rover enlisted the help of cognitive psychologists to unpack “how vehicle behaviour affects human confidence in new technology,” the British automaker said in a news release.

(Read Full Story Here via The Washington Post)