Article round up

For this month’s article roundup, we’ve focused on some articles of interest around the theme of movement, concentrating on scheduling, mapping, routing and resource allocation.

‘How to Manage Scheduling Software Fairly’ was published by the Harvard Business Review in September last year but is an excellent read and pertinent to our discussions around scheduling journeys. The article promotes a balance between the efficiencies created by a machine alongside the intelligence you get from human intervention.

We remain ardent supporters of OpenStreetMap (OSM) with its rich and underlying data providing a powerful ratchet to applications like routing. Mapbox created a stunning visualization, using ‘vector tiles’ under the hood, of ten years of OSM updates. If you know someone who’s doubted the success of OSM compared to proprietary rivals, they need look no further than this great showcase.

We also enjoyed this article from Bill Gurley, an investor and board member of Uber among other things. In ‘Uber’s New BHAG: UberPool’, the author gives his reasons why UberPool – a service in which people along similar routes could share a taxi – is worthy of being a BHAG (Big Hairy Audacious Goal) for Uber. Well worth a read.

We’ve read through the Consumer Privacy Protection Principles that were published by Alliance of Automobile Manufacturers, in November 2014. The seven principles they describe are transparency; choice; respect for context; data minimization, de-identification and retention; data security; integrity and access; accountability. While these principles seem broadly compatible and overlapping with existing data protection legislation, the principles do seem to act as a useful template for other applications involving location based and/or biometric data, and takes into account things we now know about the internet that may not have been clear when earlier data protection legislation has been created.

On other policy notes, in February 2015 the UK House of Commons Transport Committee published a report on Motoring of the Future, and the UK Department for Transport (DfT) published a report on The Pathway to Driverless Cars. The next three or so years will doubtless see further policy work to formulate international regulations around new transport-related technology, although the DfT conclude that as of now, there is nothing to prevent testing of driverless cars anywhere in the UK. They intend to publish a code of practice around driverless cars in Spring 2015.

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