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Damian Przybyła

architect,

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why over 2000-pounds vehicle is used to transport 150-pounds person?

why over 2000-pounds vehicle is used to transport 150-pounds person, do we really need this speed and range of cars? world evolved into a place without distances and borders, and maybe even without time - these are domains of our reality, but isn't there a ominous paradox within, the faster we're living - the less time we have; the faster our "standard of live" grows - the more phony dependencies we create (e.g. in crucial sectors - as agriculture), the more we posses, the less happy we are; let’s start by walking slowly.

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  • Jul 19 2012: As an engineer whose business is to calculate vehicle performance, I too have been asking this question. There seems to be no answer or almost none. Disabled people use small electric carts to get about at about 10 km./hr. and this strikes me as a good way to do it in town. Some others have a city car which is smaller and lighter than when they want to go longer distances.

    But in general the tradition of high-speed motoring capacity is combined with a relatively heavy-structure for giving a limited degree of crash protection. Designers don't seem to accept the fact that when such a heavy structure fails it collapses violently. A greater degree of flexibility is needed. What is not tried in car design is the provision of low mass with lower speeds and a very flexible (inflated?) structure, which would provide better crash resistance and it would need to dissipate much less kinetic energy during failures. The law could be changed to restrict the heavier personal vehicles to be kept out of town, etc. Also it could be argued that the fuel manufacturerers are having such a good time that these new suggested design styles are unwanted, but as fuel becomes a greater part of family living costs this need for change will grow.

    I am sure that if the finance department of a country were to calculate the amount of public money is being spent on crash victims recovery and balance this against the expense of new-car develpoment/testing and allow for the reductions in taxes charagable on the fuel for the new desigh, then there would not only be new jobs needed but money to pay the wages for this kind of work. In other words the integration of cars, people, work and taxation would be of great benefit. Trouble is most planners can only think in terms of one aspect of the situation, when in fact it should be considered as a big system, akin to macroeconomics (or at least how one should regard this subject, instead of our poor types of one-sector favouritism).
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      Jul 21 2012: Hello David, thank you for answer; probably we can not expect lowering our expectations towards future - if we’re able to travel across such distances in such short time - why, we shouldn’t benefit from it, but I’m assuming from you answer, that there won’t be any solutions which will come from reorganizing our way of life - but from innovating and proposing new technologies and materials
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    Jul 18 2012: Hello Damian,

    I agree with you that we have to slow down for the best of our existence, but the economic system we are using will not allow this to happen due to its immanent drive for 'growth' as a result of the debt-creating monetary system.

    So if you wish to slow down, the monetary system needs to be changed first and then 'for' and not 'against' the people.

    Honestly, I am quite pessimistic that this will ever happen, as most people do not realise the true cause of this continuous acceleration of the 'hamster wheel' and keep running faster and faster within.

    You will always find many advocates for the given system, which still believe in the good of 'free markets' and 'deregulation' of any government and usually those people are more influencial than others.

    In my view, the control of the monetary system belongs in the hands of the people which live within it, and that it is used to serve all of them and not just a view. And no, this is no communism or socialism or any of this 'black' and 'white' stereotypes, yet the only way back to humanity on the long run.

    And, by the way, in this given system those 2000+ pound cars will only change due to a lack of resources and not by reason, and just a view can see alternatives beyond the socialist 'Trabant' car design... ;o)
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      Jul 21 2012: Hello, thank you for sharing your opinion; I’m afraid that solution won’t come from any kind of logical analysis but rather from next sort of “shock” which will re-direct our way of life, just as industrial and information revolutions which totally defined all kind of current circumstances
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    Jul 20 2012: Because we can't make an engine or chassis light enough to carry all the things we want in it. When cars were first made, gas was cheap. Now that gas is expensive, we still have the mindset of a car that can do all the things we want it to do.

    Because people will continue to keep large and heavy cars, we don't want to drive a light car that might collide with something much heavier than what we are in. So it is a mindset of survival. If we can change the mindset, we can change the outcome. Interesting question.

    As far as speed is concerned, this is written in the stars. The Mayans predicted that the rate of change would continually accelerate until it approached infinity. We're almost there. I expect that we will reach a new horizon once the current Mayan calendar runs out. We'll need to think outside of the box. Maybe people will understand what you wrote and start to reverse the process. This is one of the predictions of Eastern philosophy, that the world would go in reverse.
  • Jul 21 2012: i think that the gasoline is not expensive enough yet.
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      Jul 21 2012: I'm afraid that the only effect would be a tendency for paying even more money for gasoline, without considering if I can afford it.
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    Jul 19 2012: I would like to see all vehicle types automated with local fail-safes (sensors + manual overrides) under a master coordination system (probably centralized for all traffic/cross-traffic handling). A non-hackable arrangement if possible. I believe work is underway here and there, but until that ubiquity all the human-controlled vehicles terrify me. :)
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    Jul 19 2012: http://www.zeromotorcycles.com/zero-s/specs.php

    The sexiest solution to this problem, that no one is buying.