P&DA Pickup and Delivery Services Inc.

A number of outfits (including Google) have been working extensively on making self-driving cars. Someone should take that technology and apply it to a smaller automaton — create the P&DA Pickup and Delivery Service. This business would run a number of P&DAs (pronounced “pan-duh”, for Pickup AND Delivery Automaton) out of central garage/shop/repair/charging stations to handle a variety of pickup and delivery services. The v1.0 P&DAs would be slow, light, and small electric scooters with side wheels for extra stability and a box for cargo instead of a human driver/rider/passenger seat; I think I see them as speed-limited to like 15-30kph at first for safety in order to prove that the technology is reliable and can be safe. The service model would be to provide a smooth, web-based, mobile-accessible interface for “retail” customers, as well as more advanced features and contact/help for corporate/enterprise contracts, so that customers could order that a P&DA arrive at address A, be loaded with whatever, arrive at address B, get unloaded, and return to its home charging/service station. Have the container designed by the people who make ATMs, for physical security, and it could only be unlocked if its GPS coordinates were correct and a secret key code (sent by email to the delivery receiver) is typed into its keypad. I might also integrate a credit card reader into the keypad so it would only open once you paid for the delivery.

Imagine ordering a delivery made to you, even if you out at the library or at a coffee shop. You could also use it to drop off packages to the post office (skip the line!). Would you order your next take-out food, grocery, or dry cleaning transportation from a P&DA?

Where is my car’s ringtone?

People like personalizing their possessions and the more expensive something is the more personalized the owner would probably prefer it to be. A car is likely the second most expensive thing someone owns, after their house. Most modern cars beep an acknowledgement when the associated keychain radio transmitter is clicked. It just beeps? Didn’t cell phones stop “just beeping” like 5 years ago, while nice phones had basic ringtones at least 10 years ago?

So, here is the idea. What if you could use a USB connection in your dashboard to load a 1-5 second audio clip that plays (midi-fied?) instead of beeping when the radio transmitter is used? You could even permit a set of them to be loaded, so that “lock”, “unlock”, and “find me” can have different audio settings.