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So this device is basically a rude substitute for "hey would you mind not reclining so far? The seat is hitting my knees."?

Apparently one of the common scams in Eastern Europe is to drop a wallet by a tourist. When the tourist picks up the wallet and hands it back, the scammer starts loudly yelling that the tourist stole their wallet, threatening to call the police if the tourist doesn't give them some cash. So I guess sometimes it does pay to punch they guy handing you your own wallet.

Not just in eastern Europe, there was a variation of this scam in Amsterdam(at least 10 years ago), where an alleged drug dealer would hold some white powder in his hands and bump into you on purpose, so that it makes him drop the powder, then the guy would say that you wasted his drugs and you should pay him money as reparation.

I ran into this scam in New York City last year, I was walking down 8th Avenue, up at 115st, a guy bumped into me and dropped a bag on the ground, the bag started to leak, he said he had just bought some expensive whiskey, now it was wasted, I should pay him so he could replace the whiskey, etc, etc. An obvious scam.

I'd love to watch too scammers bump into each other and see how that unfolds.

Probably something like this https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WnzlbyTZsQY

Why should they use binocular vision?

The bad reason is "Because we do, and we're the best. Those researchers are just slackers".

One good reason would be to prefer passive sensing, because LIDAR is equivalent to waving a laser across the entire landscape, precisely announcing your own position to anyone watching. Multi-ocular systems can be entirely passive assuming enough ambient light, so they're much harder to detect.

> Should the self driving car swerve into you to avoid greater moral hazard?

The self-driving car's first priority should be to protect those inside it. Anything else is more complicated. I read an article a little while ago about this topic and it posed a question along the lines of "should a self-driving car do the thing that'll kill its own passengers, yet save a larger number of others around it?" Think about how difficult it would be for a self-driving car to estimate this. Even more importantly, how would two self-driving cars cooperate in the event of an inevitable accident? Would we allow them to directly talk to each other, or are they only allowed to interpret each others' trajectories?

I think the simplest directive is "save your own passengers". That is what human drivers currently do, and I believe in the long run this would be effective at saving the optimal number of lives. Besides, if choosing between a car with this directive and a car that's programmed to sacrifice you to save someone else, which would you buy?

Most-obvious, but a self-driving would be riding "alone" for long periods of time. For example "sending" car from one member of the family to another (or one client to another for use), or maybe delivering items from the store directly into a box. So in this case, the car should have the other mode, which is not safe for the car, but from whatever is outside, but now that I've typed it, even that I don't know the details, I feel that's probably too complicated.

Ooh, I really like this idea. Instead of me finding parking at the airport, I send my car to park in my own driveway, then have it pick me up a few days later. That's brilliant. I haven't even thought of the possibility of having the car drive empty.

This has been discussed as the first step for wide acceptance of driverless cars. As a personal valet at a mall for instance, large public lots could be prepared in a way that makes navigation for driverless cars easier. There could be a driverless car parking lot away from main entrances, and therefore leave most parking open for regular drivers. I believe it was Mercedes that had an interesting demo a year or two ago in Las Vegas that demonstrated this sort of idea.

It is amazing when you think about it at scale. Your car drops you off exactly where you want to go, then double-parks in a ultra-dense parking hanger.

What are we going to do with all the extra parking spaces? Turn them into parks/wildlife habitat/green space!

To be fair, we are probably going to just keep them as parking lots and pile more people into the cities. But yes, this type of thing is exciting.

Realistically the self-driving car isn't going to be smart or fast enough to make these choices. We are assuming some infallible perfect AI when if-fact you have a bunch of (relatively) simple algorithms a bunch of mapping data. The fact is that the type of complicated moral analysis will take time prehaps in the absolute best case several 1/10th of a second. For a moving vehicle that analysis will likely be moot during that time. We don't expect human drivers to make such difficulty snap decisions as part of a driving tests why should we ask a self driving car to?

Really fascinating questions.

> Think about how difficult it would be for a self-driving car to estimate this.

For sure you're right in the near term. But assuming we achieve super-intelligent AI that we manage to corral into a benevolent relationship with us, perhaps difficulty wouldn't be an issue at that point.

> Even more importantly, how would two self-driving cars cooperate in the event of an inevitable accident? Would we allow them to directly talk to each other, or are they only allowed to interpret each others' trajectories?

Yeah, this is getting good. Assuming we have those super-intelligent machines, those cars should be able to share pretty much all relevant data before a collision. So how could the car determine the greater good option? Is one life equal to another? What if one is rich and one is poor? What if one is the president? How could they even collaborate if they don't share the same basis for valuing human life? Could car companies realistically have diversity in those algorithms, or wouldn't that just lead to lawsuits against cars that were overly aggressive or passive? Nobody wants an unsafe car, so would car companies have to compete in their creation of aggressive algorithms? Or would it be a factor of cost... that you need to pay more for a car that guards its occupants more strongly... leading to more and more aggressive cars as they compete for the crown? Honestly, this line of thinking leads me to think we'll eventually need these values to be dictated and homogenized... requiring a strong central government, and aggressive detection and punishment of aberration. Or else a mad max style zero sum game.

Forgive the digression into fantasyland, I just found the ideas and questions here to be inspiringly interesting.

I'm not sure about that. If your car had uncontrolled acceleration, for instance, would you consider use a crowd of people to slow you down or would you put it in the ditch? For the sake of argument that amounts to a left or right turn.

Say there are 10 people in this crowd. The optimal solution for the 11 of us is obviously to have my car drive off a cliff to the right, not into the crowd on the left. However, for me, the optimal solution is obviously to not drive off a cliff.

However, your argument omits a couple of interesting details. First off, if a car can have uncontrolled acceleration, it can likely have any number of glitches. It may for example think it's accelerating uncontrollably, and try to throw me off a cliff. Or it may think that the cliff is a small ditch. Or it may think that a bunch of balloons tied to a mail box is a crowd. If you are a programmer, what would you rather debug: code that prevents uncontrolled acceleration or code responsible for killing the driver by recognizing crowds and cliffs?

The other details is whether the metaphorical crowd should even allow me to buy a car that has logic built into it to drive over them. What if instead of a cliff and a crowd it's actually two different crowds of different sizes? What would a human driver do in these cases?

Humans typically avoid creating the choice between crowds to drive into (by following traffic laws, slowing down when there are obstructions in the street, etc.).

I haven't tried to figure out what the numbers are, but my gut expectation is that vehicles driving into crowds is so rare that there aren't really statistics about it.

As a person and a driver I'm willing to say the car should drive off the cliff.

As a developer I wouldn't buy a car that would drive off the cliff.

It's a tough problem. Personally I would make a quickly/poorly thought out analysis of how to do the least damage. Being human I'd probably get it wrong.

I am more or less in the same boat as you. I do however think that a simple algorithm of "save people in the car" is better than "try to save objects identified as people outside the car" because it is simple and in the long run likely very effective. Making computers make moral/ethical decisions is difficult, especially with poor inputs.

>> As a developer I wouldn't buy a car that would drive off the cliff.

What does being a developer have anything to do with it?

A developer knows, through hard-won experience, that the algorithm to decide whether driving over a cliff is better for everyone is bound to have bugs, and will therefore gladly throw you off a cliff when it is the wrong thing to do ;(

Non-developers would assume the computer to be (somewhat) infallible.

I think a more realistic moral scenario is this: you come around a bend, and there's a five year old on a tricycle in the road. He shouldn't be there; but he is. Do you plow over him, with minimal damage to the car, or try to break/avoid him with the risk of going off the road and into the ocean below - or hitting the cliff?

What if you're in your car with your family?

The best answer is of course: never let the car travel so fast this scenario happens - but given the possibility of an oil spill around the bend -- that might be very slow indeed.

Eh, I don't know. Lots of people would swerve their car into a tree to avoid hitting a person. They put themselves at risk to avoid killing someone.

I think this is because I would feel responsible for killing that person. If my self-driving car hit the person, I may feel bad, but probably not responsible.

Respectfully disagree. In a region of inevitable collision, the car's first priority should be to reduce its kinetic energy to zero.

If you take that dictum, then any action which requires activation energy (e.g. steering, or accelerating to avoid something) is unavailable, and as a result, the vast majority of these ethical decisions are completely moot.

These are some interesting points, but we can look for a peek into the future with airplanes which communicate through anticollision computer systems. I'm not an aviation person, but I believe the actual collision avoidance must be performed by a human being, however the devices themselves communicate with one another to determine the corrective flight path.

Also, you can enforce cars with directives to save "the most" lives with policy and law. Of course people are going to buy the crowd-plowing car if it saves their own asses. That's why you make it difficult or impossible to buy a car that will do this, instead only authorizing cars that make the better choice to drive the streets.

I've worked on TCAS (collision avoidance for airplanes) in the past. The system will alert the pilot and ask them to do a specific route (such as climb, descend, do-not-climb). It's up to the pilot to respond (est. 2-5 seconds reaction time). The route decided upon by the airplane is in conjunction with the other plane.

Thank you for your input! I'm glad memory serves me mostly correctly every once in a great while. Will the TCAS or a related system take corrective action if the pilot does not?

What is the ethical answer for a human in the same situation?

At a high level, we have a younger generation (currently in their 20's) who have grown up with video games and the Internet. They have spent countless hours playing anything from Donkey Kong to Call of Duty, which exposed them to this culture. This is the first generation to experience this en masse, and they are the right demographic to target since they may become lifetime customers.

Baking soda in the fridge/freezer is a marketing success by Arm & Hammer. It does not remove smells. Try activated charcoal instead.

Take a look at AshleyMadison.com. Their whole business is helping married people have affairs. I saw them on a daytime talk show when they first came out (years ago). The thing I loved most about their story is that the name of the site was derived by taking the two most popular baby names from that year and combining them.

That's hilarious. This year's would be EmmaOlivia.

That is both sad and very interesting. I have a similar problem with finding people to go running with me around where I live. Meetup groups around here are spread over a 50 mile radius or so, so that's no help. Perhaps I can try the opposite approach and post "hey, looking for a running buddy" on Match.com, OkCupid, AFF, etc.

A straight female friend that had just moved into a new city directly messaged other women that she thought would make good friends on OKC.

Her response rate was about 40%. I cried a little.

I don't understand your comment. Are you crying because 40% is high or low?

He's crying because his response rate trying to contact women to date is probably way lower than that.

I have a somewhat unique perspective on this subject, and one of the insights I have gleamed is that gay and lesbian dating sites generally have much higher success rates. The reason is that perceived risk is much lower. Generally, when a man and a woman go out on a semi-blind date, the woman has a lot more to be afraid of. The guy can turn out to be a "creep" for example. Or if she decides at some point to have sex with him, she might get pregnant with little commitment from him. She has a lot to lose from a bad date than he does.

On the other hand, two guys or two girls going out on a date is not as big a deal. The perception is that it's safer. There is of course a lot to worry about, but the playing field is usually a lot more level. This of course is offset by the fact that on most dating sites your pool of gay or lesbian candidates is smaller, but your chances of them responding will generally be higher.

Bingo, but (for the reasons given in the other reply, and probably an imbalance in members) that's expected for response rates to male--->female messages.

I actually went to school to learn to build a site similar to this (2003, not sure how many tutorials there were then, but I didn't know of them anyway). Though my inspiration came from loving to camp and canoe/white water raft and no friends of mine liked that outdoorsy stuff.

I also didn't realize this site was already out there, but if it was dating/sex related by that time, I wouldn't have known it could be used for that.

FWIW, there's another site I think similary created for meeting people nearby as friends (Meetme.com) that has also turned into a sex/hookup app.

There is a niche in the market. Some people have tried to fill that niche, and they've posted their sites to HN.

The main problems seem to be:

1) The sites only work once you have enough users to make them work, but you can't get more users until the site works.

2) People use them for sex, which is off-putting to large numbers of users.

OKC should probably set up some kind of meet-friends-in-groups thing.

Meetup.com seems to do this successfully, is that the same type of site that you are referring to?

I've considered going to a computer / technology / entrepreneurship club, but haven't yet. They also have local groups for dog owners, walking/fitness/specialty (ballet, dance), FPV drone flyers, sports groups, and almost anything else I could think of they had a group already started for it in my city.

Some have memberships fees (completely optional when setting up a new group, afaik) and some have more strict requirements when joining (a potential problem but I haven't heard of it being abused).

Meetup seems to be successful because it only handles scheduled, group activities. If your website lets people privately connect with others who live in the same city, some of your user base will start using it to find sex.

> "If your website lets people privately connect with others who live in the same city, some of your user base will start using it to find sex."

This seems like something that would be in a David Letterman "Top 10 list of things to consider for your new website".

I wonder if something like this can be piggy backed off Facebook would work. You kill many birds with that stone: you can use the degrees of separation to verify people ("Oh, that's Joe's friend"), you already have an audience, and people are less likely to flood it with casual sex proposals.

Facebook would be great but they're so full of garbage that few meaningful messages get through. I once sent out a query for people interested in a software project and tagged every friend I had who knows something about code (30-40). It didn't even show up in all their feeds. But hey, share a cat video hosted on a big commercial site and everyone gets that...

That's why with FB it's better to private message. When I see myself tagged in a post with 30 other people I can safely ignore it. It's usually someone trying to send out a social message. If someone messages me directly, I know it's important enough and take the time to respond. YMMV.

OKC at least has a "Looking for friends/Activity partners" option, whether it ever works is questionable. maybe people will message you, if not what have you lost? 10 mins to fill in a profile!

OkCupid needs a lot more than 10 minutes to fill out a profile. Spending a couple hours answering questions is generally recommended for their matching algorithms to work well.


Althought it sounds a bit sparse at the moment.

Bonus points for the Inbetweeners gifs.

Is there a running goods store near where you live? I don't have the time to run as much as I'd care to, but if I were new in town (Washington, DC), I'd start with the group runs that Pacers (1500 block of P St. NW) organizes, or Fleet Feet (? 1800 block of Columbia Road NW).

That's a good point, I haven't checked those out. Mostly been looking through stuff on Meetup.com. I'll do that and see what turns up.

You can see who runs around you via Strava.com, not to mentions its an awesome GPS app for running/biking. App also has features to post pics/comment/like, social network centered around outdoor activities with GPS features, pretty cool.

Never heard of Strava, I'll check it out, thanks.

I actually ended up in my last job because of OkCupid. Someone sent me a message, we ended up talking for a bit, and they invited me to a board game party at their house. Ended up going, then later got nagged into providing a resume.

OkCupid, at least when I signed up 10+ years ago, allowed you to specify that you were interested in platonic activity partners, and would show both a match rating and friend rating.

A (good looking, male) friend was in SF for a conference or something. I'm not sure who initiated contacted, but he got to talking to a (good looking, female) person(/account) on Tinder. They never met, but would talk about the tech industry. Tech gossip type stuff, similar to what you might see here or on Techcrunch, etc.

The female he was talking to may or may not be real... But, if you wanted to get inside information on a bunch of companies, it would be a great way to do it (and i'm sure it's happening as we speak).

I've gotten requests on linkedin from accounts for fake women with stolen photos. I recall one in particular where I did a reverse image search on the profile photo and found that it was of a woman who'd been murdered a few years prior.

Recruiters on OkCupid?

No, they were not a recruiter, and I am pretty sure that recruiting was not the motivation for contacting me.

See if there is a Nextdoor site set up for your neighborhood - nextdoor.com

Find a running club?

Don't forget lighter than air craft. A GoPro + weather balloon is pretty efficient.


At the expense of maneuverability. It's worth mentioning that this is the trade off here.

From least to most maneuverable:

Weather balloon -> Fixed Wing -> Single rotor -> Multirotor


Definitely. Now I want to build a blimp drone or a blone if you will just to give it a try :). I imagine a toroidal shaped ballon with a small propeller in the middle might actually do fairly well and would be less susceptible to sideways wind than a balloon.


This was posted in the discussion when the Lily was announced:



Yes, definitely, but scaling volume to carry payload mass becomes inconvenient for casual use quickly.

Cheating the calcs a bit and using the table here: http://www.chem.hawaii.edu/uham/lift.html A 3.5oz (~99gram) Go pro needs at least a 22in diameter spherical ballon filled with Helium. And unless you're ok with tethered use, you need to dedicate some power & mass to pointing & station keeping which increases the volume even more. For every gram of other capability you add, you're adding another liter of gas.


So you need roughly 100 grams of payload + probably another 100 or so grams of mounting gear (gimbals, etc.) + directional propellers + battery packs which likely total out at around a kilogram. So that's roughly a 1.2 meter diameter balloon or 950 liters. That's fairly large, I agree.

Do you know if a hybrid has been done where you have a multi-rotor assisted by TLA ballast?


None that I know of, but multi-rotors lateral flight authority is often weak vs winds. So, I would worry that a big gas bladder might strongly exacerbate that by requiring a much higher capability vs wind. But then again, a hybrid might not be a 'conventional' multi-rotor config.


Self host + CloudFlare in front of it? They don't limit your bandwidth and will cache what you have. Plus that way you don't have to explain to your potential users how to torrent. They likely already know how to use a browser.



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