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Automotive News

Research scientist Bryan Reimer and his colleagues have been collecting data from vehicles with driver-assist technology for the last seven years, writes Pete Bigelow for Automotive News. “We desperately need to understand the denominators, the frequency of events and the behaviors underlying them to understand the benefits and limitations of automated and assisted driving,” says Reimer. “We need to understand which aspects are working well and which ones need refining.”

The Boston Globe

Prof. Karilyn Crockett speaks with Boston Globe reporter Miles Howard about how transportation planning in the Greater Boston area needs to be centered around improving connectivity. “As Boston’s population grows, our public transportation infrastructure continues to crumble, and our transit planning can’t just be about new cars on one line and new tracks on another,” says Crockett. “It has to be a discussion about the system and the economic impacts of that system on Black and brown communities that are struggling to get to doctors’ appointments, to schools, to jobs that don’t allow working from home.”

Wired

A study by MIT AgeLab research scientist Bryan Reimer found that drivers using autopilot were “more likely to look away from the road once the system was on,” reports Aarian Marshall for Wired. “With automation comes an inherent new level of complexities. There are lots of risks and lots of rewards,” says Reimer.

Financial Times

Financial Times reporter William D. Cohan profiles Robert Joseph Scaringe SM ’07, PhD ’09 and his personal and professional career in developing Rivian, an electric vehicle technology company dedicated to building vehicles that change the way we consume fossil fuels. “Scaringe has been pining to run his own car company since he was a 17-year-old growing up on the Atlantic coast of Florida, just south of Cape Canaveral. ‘If you were to go in my bedroom as a kid, you’d find [car] hoods under the bed and windshields in the closet,’ he says.”

Financial Times

Writing for the Financial Times, Prof. Carlo Ratti explores how coordination between ride-hailing services can benefit cities by reducing traffic and carbon emissions. “Imagine a world in which, instead of wavering between Uber, Lyft or a regular taxi, we could open a single app that figures out which service is closest and most affordable,” writes Ratti. 

The Hill

Writing for The Hill, Prof. Jinhua Zhao explores how many people, when provided the opportunity to work remotely, work from a location other than their home. “If employers provide the necessary flexibility to their staff, and policymakers engage in smart land use and transportation planning for third-place trips,” writes Zhao, “the result could be a rare win-win-win for workers, businesses, and the public good.”

The Boston Globe

Assaf Biderman ‘05, associate director of the MIT SENSEable City Lab, discusses his startup Superpedestrian, a transportation robotics company that has developed electric scooters available in over 60 cities across the world.  “I think we hit the holy grail of micromobility, which is detecting when you’re on the sidewalk every time and stopping or slowing the vehicle,” said Biderman.

Politico

Politico reporter Alex Daugherty spotlights a study from MIT and the International Council on Clean Transportation which found “that the use of alternative jet fuels like e-kerosene in supersonic transport aircraft would still lead to an increased worsening of climate change because these faster gets burn more fuel per passenger.”

Financial Times

The driverless car industry lacks a clear business model in comparison to its competitors, reports Patrick McGee for Financial Times. “Driverless does not mean humanless,” says research scientist Ashley Nunes. “Robotaxis replace one set of human costs, the human driver, with another, inefficiency.”

Forbes

Jin Stedge ’13 cofounded TrueNorth, a trucking company aimed at putting truckers in charge of their own companies, reports Igor Bosilkovski for Forbes. “We give truckers a single place to manage their whole business, and that’s everything from finding and booking loads, sending updates to customers, tracking applications, all in one place and charging one clean fee instead of ten different fees,” says Stedge.

Forbes

Wise Systems, an AI-based delivery management platform originating from MIT’s Media Lab, has applied machine learning to real-time data to better plan delivery routes and schedules for delivery drivers, reports Susan Galer for Forbes. “The system can more accurately predict service times, taking into account the time it takes to complete a stop, and factoring in the preferences of the retailer, hotel, medical institution, or other type of client,” says Allison Parker of Wise Systems.

The Hill

Writing for The Hill, Prof. Jinhua Zhao, Prof. Franz-Josef Ulm, Research Scientist Anson Stewart and Principal Research Scientist Randolph Kirchain explore how to maximize the impact and effectiveness of the infrastructure spending bill. “Here’s what we should do," they write. "Modernize planning tools to consider systems holistically, get out of technology ruts, and, most fundamentally, measure performance.”

The Boston Globe

Joseph Coughlin, director of the MIT AgeLab, and Luke Yoquinto, a research associate at the AgeLab, emphasize the importance of increased investment in aging-related research in an article for The Boston Globe. Coughlin and Yoquinto call for “ramping up age-related disease research across the board: not just in health care and robotics, but also in smart-home tech, user design, transportation, workplace technologies, education and training, and nutrition. R&D in these fields won’t just improve lives; it will also strengthen tomorrow’s economy.”

Banker & Tradesman

Lecturer Malia Lazu writes for Banker & Tradesman about the future of the Boston business community as Mayor Michelle Wu takes office. “At the end of the day, Mayor Wu’s priorities are not that different from those of the business community: transportation infrastructure that brings people to job centers, stronger schools that create pathways to jobs, climate resiliency that keeps city infrastructure stable in the future, affordable housing and a diverse workforce, among others,” writes Lazu.

The Wall Street Journal

Writing for The Wall Street Journal, Prof. John Sterman details how he reduced his personal carbon footprint, from commuting via bicycle to completing a deep-energy retrofit on his home. “The project was great fun, cost-effective and the house is far more comfortable,” writes Sterman. “But personal action, though essential, isn’t sufficient. Building a prosperous, safe and equitable world requires that we transform our economy and institutions. To do so we must act now. There is no time to waste.”