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Category: Transportation (Page 1 of 2)

Cars are fast becoming all-seeing data-harvesting machines – a so-called “privacy nightmare on wheels”

The Conversation »

The researchers looked at the privacy terms of 25 car brands, which were found to collect a range of customer data, from facial expressions, to sexual activity, to when, where and how people drive.

They also found terms that allowed this information to be passed on to third parties. Cars were “the official worst category of products for privacy” they had ever reviewed, they concluded.

Driver will soon be charged a hefty toll to drive into downtown Manhattan

The new toll beginning in spring 2024, is expected to be between US$9 and $23 per day for passenger vehicles. Commercial vehicles will be charged upon each entry and exit to the zone.

Regional planners believe the toll will nudge some drivers onto transit. The MTA plans to use the proceeds from congestion pricing to shore up its aging infrastructure.

Why New York Will Charge $23/Day To Drive Into Manhattan

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98% of Europeans breathing highly damaging polluted air linked to 400,000 deaths a year

The Guardian »

Analysis of data gathered using cutting-edge methodology – including detailed satellite images and measurements from more than 1,400 ground monitoring stations – reveals a dire picture of dirty air, with 98% of people living in areas with highly damaging fine particulate pollution that exceed World Health Organization guidelines. Almost two-thirds live in areas where air quality is more than double the WHO’s guidelines.

The worst hit country in Europe is North Macedonia. Almost two-thirds of people across the country live in areas with more than four times the WHO guidelines for PM2.5, while four areas were found to have air pollution almost six times the figure, including in its capital, Skopje.

Traffic, industry, domestic heating and agriculture are the main sources of PM2.5 and the impact is often felt disproportionately by the poorest communities. »

Your car is probably spying on you

Gizmodo »

If your vehicle was made in the last few years, you’re probably driving around in a data-harvesting machine that may collect personal information as sensitive as your race, weight, and sexual activity. Volkswagen’s cars reportedly know if you’re fastening your seatbelt and how hard you hit the brakes.

That’s according to new findings from Mozilla’s *Privacy Not Included project. The nonprofit found that every major car brand fails to adhere to the most basic privacy and security standards in new internet-connected models, and all 25 of the brands Mozilla examined flunked the organization’s test. Mozilla found brands including BMW, Ford, Toyota, Tesla, and Subaru collect data about drivers including race, facial expressions, weight, health information, and where you drive. Some of the cars tested collected data you wouldn’t expect your car to know about, including details about sexual activity, race, and immigration status, according to Mozilla. »

Mozilla » It’s Official: Cars Are the Worst Product Category We Have Ever Reviewed for Privacy

More » The Guardian | The Verge | Security WeekThe Register | EuroActiv | Security Boulevard

Ford’s new Nugget PHEV camper van

New Atlas »

The three-zone layout allows campers to move around the cabin, cook breakfast, and get in and out of the vehicle without having to crawl all over each other, even if the beds are set up. The chef has full autonomy in the rear, unlike with a California-style kitchen smack bang in the middle of the living area and next to the bed.

Poverty in the UK » Why are 1 in 4 Britons, some 15 million people, living below the proverty line?

Britain has a historically low unemployment rate of 3.6 percent. Yet poverty levels are breaking all records. It’s a paradoxical situation where almost 15 million Britons are considered poor these days, although there’s almost full employment. The reason » record corporate profits driving inflation, and and high energy costs.

The DW Documentary profiles people who have a job but can still afford nothing » from Blackpool in the west, to Ashton-under-Lyne and Cumbria, on the border with Scotland.

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Galloping inflation and a dramatic spike in energy costs in recent months are forcing millions of Britons into poverty. Wages fluctuate in an “uberized” working world of precarious employment conditions.

Over the past 10 years, beginning with David Cameron, the government has scaled back its support to vulnerable members of society. The result: reduced life expectancy.

Disadvantaged Britons are dying 10 years sooner than their wealthier compatriots – victims of what’s become known as the “shit life syndrome” – a life marked by poor living conditions, disease and addiction.


1 in 4 new cars sold in California last quarter were EVs

LA Times »

More than 25% of all new vehicles sold in the last quarter were EVs, according to the California Energy Commission, with sales for the three-month period totaling 125,939.

California has sold more than 1.6 million electric vehicles to date and accounts for 34% of all EV sales in the country, according to a market report by the nonprofit Veloz, which raises awareness about electric vehicles.

California leads the nation in promoting electric vehicle sales, having invested more than $5 billion to transition the state away from gas-powered vehicles.

California opens privacy investigation into who controls and shares the data your car is collecting

California’s new privacy regulator is embarking on its first-ever enforcement action to review of the privacy practices of connected automobiles.


The California Privacy Protection Agency—created under a ballot initiative in 2020 and the only regulator in the nation solely dedicated to privacy issues—will examine the growing amalgamation of data collected by smart vehicles and whether the business practices of the companies collecting that data comply with state law.

“Modern vehicles are effectively connected computers on wheels. They’re able to collect a wealth of information via built in apps, sensors, and cameras, which can monitor people both inside and near the vehicle,” Ashkan Soltani, the agency’s executive director, said in a statement.

U.S. regulators’ scrutiny of the data lags behind such efforts in Europe, which has forced automakers to update software to limit the collection and protect the privacy of consumers.




Tesla created secret team to suppress thousands of driving range complaints

Ingordigious » (17th Century) Adj. » Motivated primarily by greed.

Steve Stecklow and Norihiko Shirouzu, writing for Reuters »

About a decade ago, Tesla rigged the dashboard readouts in its electric cars to provide “rosy” projections of how far owners can drive before needing to recharge, a source told Reuters. The automaker last year became so inundated with driving-range complaints that it created a special team to cancel owners’ service appointments.

What Joanna Pocock learned on a 2,800-mile bus ride from Detroit to Los Angeles

The Guardian »

From Detroit, I headed to St Louis, via Columbus, Ohio, where the Greyhound would hit Route 66. My 20-minute stopover in Columbus was where a picture began to form of what Greyhound travel looks like today. The bus station consisted of a parking garage the size of a small airplane hangar. At both ends, electric doors opened and closed when a bus entered or exited. Between the two bus lanes sat a small concrete island where passengers were disgorged. There was a chemical toilet, no drinking fountain, very few seats and no windows. The air was choked with exhaust. A police van was parked at one end of the tunnel and armed policemen stood against a wall facing us.

If you had commissioned an urban planner to design the most hostile, uncomfortable and unhealthy environment for passengers, this would be the result. I guess this is what you get when you travel in a seat costing $35 as opposed to a $200 plane ticket or in a car with a full tank of gas.

My next bus was scheduled to leave for St Louis – a mere 530-mile trip – at 3.00pm. I looked around at my fellow island-dwellers: an elderly man with four large zip-up bags printed with “Patient Belongings”; a couple travelling with a large fluffy blanket propped up against the Porta-Potti as a makeshift bed; a mother and her teenage son carrying large cardboard boxes. The sign on the empty Greyhound kiosk read: “As of 25 January 2023 – you will need photo ID to buy tickets.” Yet another barrier between those with little money, no fixed address, no car, no passport or credit card and their ability to travel

Environment » The world’s first hydrogen-powered passenger train, the Coradia iLint, is being tested in Quebec’s Charlevoix region

France 24 »

Designed in France by rolling stock manufacturer Alstom, the zero-emissions train runs on electricity produced by mixing hydrogen with oxygen, meaning that moisture its only waste product. Alstom said Europe has already placed an order for 41 hydrogen trains.


Environnement : la locomotive à hydrogène vert à la conquête de l'Amérique • FRANCE 24

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World's first hydrogen powered passenger train • FRANCE 24 English

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Hamilton bus ridership rebounding

Hamilton Spectator »

Hamilton transit ridership is close to pre-pandemic levels for the first time since COVID-19 emptied HSR buses three years ago.

More than 1.5 million riders hopped on an HSR bus last month — or about 94 per cent of the pre-pandemic ridership recorded in June of 2019, which is considered the city’s “benchmark” year before COVID.

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