Out in Kanata, QNX, a subsidiary of BlackBerry, is building and testing a driverless car.
Now Ottawa International Airport is investigating a driverless shuttle service between parking lots and its terminal.
The future is coming at us at break-neck speed.
In the 1980s, your agent saw his first personal computer, an Apple, and thought, “That will be a good word processor.” You could play pong on it.
Today the PC and mobile technology are putting huge swathes of the media out of business, changing the nature of labour through robotics and altering society and business in ways we could not possibly imagine in the 1980s.
The driver-less car is especially fascinating because it allows the privacy people crave in transportation with the possibility of controlling it in such a way that it makes maximum use of the already-created road infrastructure. It is a very enticing technology, especially for seniors and the handicapped.
And then we have Ottawa’s $6-billion first two phases of light rail. Old, extremely expensive transportation that could easily be overtaken by technology. It creates the possibility of businesses operating without offices or telecommuting or other developments we can’t even imagine today.
We’re putting a huge investment in light rail in this city. Let’s hope, because it is coming so late, that it is not out-dated by the time it is finished.