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Old 03-20-2017, 07:44 AM   #76
Alan C. Lawhon
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Re: Is Uber Doomed?

Top Uber Executive Bails Out

Ruh Oh ... http://www.recode.net/2017/3/19/1497...ff-jones-quits
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Old 03-20-2017, 08:20 AM   #77
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Re: Is Uber Doomed?

Ride sharing will be here forever. Prices will rise slightly. But the key is that there will always be labor. Very few drops where the requirements are so low. Have car. And I guess that is changing to where they will lease you the car. So, requirement is have a driver's license.
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Old 03-20-2017, 04:35 PM   #78
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Re: Is Uber Doomed?

Some good comments on hacker news: https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=13911596

Quote:
All the speculation around the turmoil over seems to be missing one key component. I think a bigger driving force then this sexual harassment and CEO antics is the waymo lawsuit. Uber itself has acknowledged that without self-driving capabilities the company will most likely not find profitability. From reporting I've read, it appears the waymo lawsuit has a high probability of success.

If the waymo lawsuit essentially forces Uber to start its self driving program back from scratch then the path to self-driving viability has essentially been scrapped. To me, this is a better explanation of the recent spat of high-level exits from the company.
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vannevar 5 hours ago [-]

Uber doesn't just need self-driving cars, they need driverless cars. That's ten years away, and there's no way Uber can sustain its losses for that long. It's an investment Ponzi scheme, and it's losing steam. When it collapses, it's going to take a big chunk of the tech private equity market with it.
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alistproducer2 5 hours ago [-]

This is my assessment as well. People at the c-suite level had to be aware that viability of the company is highly reliant on the magical thinking that they could get to market with driver-less tech before the VC money runs out. The (very real) prospect of complete restart of that research program has likely freed them of the fantasy.

I'm not totally discounting the PR issues as a partial cause of the exits. As a c-level employee, you (more than most hires) have to answer for rotten company culture. I also, however, think both issue (lawsuit and PR issues) make it untenable for the current batch of executives to stay on.
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Old 03-22-2017, 06:34 AM   #79
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Re: Is Uber Doomed?

I drove a taxi in Minneapolis. We have lots of freeways, long rides, and accounts. Taxis charge $2.50 / mile and did for a quite a few years (so a great deal a while ago, not so much when gas was $4 / gal).

For a weekly lease (take home car and use it for personal) I paid $500 / week. A split lease (usually am / pm but up to the drivers actually) is ($500 + $150) / 2.

Gas in my experience is 15-20% of gross receipts, but I'm a chaser. The guys sitting at the cab stand downtown probably pay less.

My peak gross was about $30 hour, which is where it peaked for me in about 2005. It's actually gone down since as runs to the airport declines and cheap $2 mile / no flag - no tip medical account runs become more of the business (60% - 80% of runs).

This means that you make nothing as a sole driver for 20 - 25 hours, then you make $30 / hour minus gas / taxes. For those wondering, more taxi drivers pay their taxes than poker players.

I'm not certain how much of the money drivers for Uber keep, but looking at their rates it seems impossible to make any money without a luxury car. Especially in large cities where taxi drivers rely on large tips as a % of fare.
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Old 03-24-2017, 02:05 PM   #80
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Re: Is Uber Doomed?

Told ya.

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Old 03-28-2017, 01:05 PM   #81
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Re: Is Uber Doomed?

This is bad for Uber.

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Old 03-29-2017, 12:43 PM   #82
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Re: Is Uber Doomed?

So the Uber executives hit up a Korean karaoke escort service. Surprisingly the lone female exec wasn't enthused

http://www.cnbc.com/2017/03/27/uber-...-in-seoul.html
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Old 03-29-2017, 08:06 PM   #83
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Re: Is Uber Doomed?

not a team player obv
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Old 03-30-2017, 06:04 PM   #84
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Re: Is Uber Doomed?

"SAN FRANCISCO — An Uber executive accused of stealing driverless car technology from his former employers at Google is exercising his Fifth Amendment right to avoid self-incrimination, according to his lawyers."

https://www.nytimes.com/2017/03/30/t...vandowski.html
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Old 03-31-2017, 04:21 PM   #85
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Re: Is Uber Doomed?

Quote:
Originally Posted by simplicitus View Post
"SAN FRANCISCO — An Uber executive accused of stealing driverless car technology from his former employers at Google is exercising his Fif Amendment right to avoid self-incrimination, according to his lawyers."

https://www.nytimes.com/2017/03/30/t...vandowski.html
FYP
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Old 04-02-2017, 06:58 PM   #86
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Re: Is Uber Doomed?

lol people who bought into uber at $68 billion
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Old 04-02-2017, 11:50 PM   #87
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Re: Is Uber Doomed?

You mean thanks people who bought into Uber at $68 billion - for subsidizing our cheap ride shares for a few more years until the bubble pops.
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Old 04-03-2017, 12:12 PM   #88
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Re: Is Uber Doomed?

Unless they manage to kill off public transit before imploding. Then a whole lot of people are ****ed.
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Old 04-03-2017, 02:53 PM   #89
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Re: Is Uber Doomed?

Uber driver picked me up the other day - got 8 kinds of lost trying to find me. I get in - the car reeks of some kind of fabreze stuff and the driver seems high AF. She was playing nasty-R&B songs at volume, with explicit sexual acts described in detail - lol.

We actually ended up having a great time - and I wrote down some of the artists to play next time I get post-breakup sex. But some cracker is gonna 1-star her out of there pretty soon.
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Old 04-03-2017, 04:08 PM   #90
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Re: Is Uber Doomed?

I still have dreams about the uber driver I had about a year ago who was deaf. ****ing heaven.
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Old 04-03-2017, 06:50 PM   #91
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Re: Is Uber Doomed?

Deaf, huh...

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Old 04-16-2017, 11:17 PM   #92
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Re: Is Uber Doomed?

Quote:
Originally Posted by suzzer99 View Post
You mean thanks people who bought into Uber at $68 billion - for subsidizing our cheap ride shares for a few more years until the bubble pops.
The people subsidizing your cheap rideshares are the drivers, and only the drivers. You are receiving their services at an absurdly low rate.
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Old 04-16-2017, 11:57 PM   #93
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Re: Is Uber Doomed?

Quote:
Originally Posted by inmyrav View Post
The people subsidizing your cheap rideshares are the drivers, and only the drivers. You are receiving their services at an absurdly low rate.
Uber spends a lot of money providing incentives to drivers, and also in discounts to riders. I don't think drivers are making enough but investors are still subsidizing a lot of rides.
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Old 04-18-2017, 12:28 PM   #94
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Re: Is Uber Doomed?

Quote:
Originally Posted by inmyrav View Post
The people subsidizing your cheap rideshares are the drivers, and only the drivers. You are receiving their services at an absurdly low rate.
No.
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Old 04-18-2017, 02:26 PM   #95
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Re: Is Uber Doomed?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Shoe View Post
Uber spends a lot of money providing incentives to drivers, and also in discounts to riders. I don't think drivers are making enough but investors are still subsidizing a lot of rides.
Uber also takes 30% of each fare, which would be more than enough to fund promotions like a ton of other businesses do if Uber weren't doing stupid **** like blowing $680 million to get themselves involved in billion dollar lawsuits:

http://www.businessinsider.com/timel...fore-leaving-7

Oh, and on "flying cars"...

All in attempt to cut drivers out of the Uber business model before their cars get repossessed, etc.
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Old 04-18-2017, 04:39 PM   #96
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Re: Is Uber Doomed?

Quote:
Originally Posted by pvn View Post
RIght, but Uber doesn't want a sustainable solution here. They just want a "scrape by until we can deploy autonomous cars and cut out all the drivers" solution. They aren't looking to build a longterm relationship with career drivers, so of course they **** them at every opportunity.
Will that work? Autonomous driving is still 10-20 years away and way to many big company's are working on it. It will be a very competitive market were mostly the price will decide. And 5 - 10 years from now customers are not likely to use a app for this kind of service it is going to be like this:

"Hi Alexa/ Google/ Cortana, i need a ride to the airport"

And what is your (to the Internet of Thing connected) mobile device going to book? Its going to book you the closest car with the best price/quality ratio.
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Old 04-18-2017, 06:35 PM   #97
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Re: Is Uber Doomed?

I have appeared in Judge Alsup's Court and argued at length before him in a 2-week trial. There may not be a more technologically inclined and self-motivated jurist in America than him. There may not be a smarter one, either.

I have no pertinent knowledge regarding the Waymo v. Uber litigation, but it is my somewhat-educated guess that Uber is about to get savaged by a Judge who has little-to-no tolerance for mealy-mouthed argumentation, innuendo, or disobedience of his Orders for clarity and brevity regarding facts and law. I haven't even bothered to check who Uber's attorneys are, but they should have realized that Judge Alsup is among the worst possible Judges to hear this case.

They needed an idiot, not a Judge of extreme intellectual capability.

EDIT: I've never been impressed by anyone in the legal field like I was by Judge Alsup, and I learned more in 2 weeks before him than I did in literally my entire career and legal education before that.

EDIT 2: Here was Alsup's synopsis on April 7:

Quote:
“Right now the record available to the court under oath is pretty convincing that Mr. Levandowski downloaded 14,000 documents, wiped his computer clean, transferred those documents to a thumb drive and took that thumb drive with him when he went to start a new company.”
They're going to get worked.
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Old 04-18-2017, 07:18 PM   #98
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Re: Is Uber Doomed?

And to follow up, after reviewing the docket, it appears the current Uber gambit is to try to shoehorn this litigation into arbitration on the basis of arbitration clauses in the employment agreement(s) between Google and Anthony Levandowski. Having skimmed the Motion and Reply filed by Uber, and the Opposition filed by Waymo, I predict that effort will fail.

As for attorneys, Waymo is represented by Quinn Emanuel (Google's go-to counsel and possibly the best litigation outfit in the world), while Uber is represented by the firms of Morrison Foerster and Boies Schiller & Flexner. MoFo is excellent, while Boies is (like Quinn) in the running for best in the world.

In the tech space I would offer that Quinn is probably the GOAT.

Last edited by CPHoya; 04-18-2017 at 07:27 PM.
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Old 04-20-2017, 01:48 PM   #99
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Re: Is Uber Doomed?

Interesting comments about Alsup, would appreciate a bit more detail on what you learned. I haven't had a case before him, but I know he's respected.

I'll be filing a computer-related copyright case next week and plan to do so in the NDCA, though it could also be brought in the CDCA. I think the NDCA has a stronger rep. for cases involving technology, though there are some good judges in the CDCA (and some NDCA judges are better than others). I think a default assumption in the NDCA is that judges should not be afraid of technology, and sometimes have to get into the details as part of the job. Not sure that's true in most other districts.
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Old 04-21-2017, 03:56 PM   #100
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Re: Is Uber Doomed?

Quote:
Originally Posted by simplicitus View Post
Interesting comments about Alsup, would appreciate a bit more detail on what you learned. I haven't had a case before him, but I know he's respected.

I'll be filing a computer-related copyright case next week and plan to do so in the NDCA, though it could also be brought in the CDCA. I think the NDCA has a stronger rep. for cases involving technology, though there are some good judges in the CDCA (and some NDCA judges are better than others). I think a default assumption in the NDCA is that judges should not be afraid of technology, and sometimes have to get into the details as part of the job. Not sure that's true in most other districts.
Moderate derail:

Judge Alsup tends to arrive at the Courthouse sometime around 5:00 AM, and frequently demands additional briefing be submitted prior to 5:00 or 6:00 PM on the same trial day on which the briefing is requested. He usually holds argument before trial from approximately 7:00 or 7:30 AM - don't remember which, but early - until the issues are handled. This gives the issues the time they deserve before trial begins for the day.

He will have read all briefing and all relevant cases. He knows the cases cold. Every time I relied upon a case or statute I knew that if I was incorrect about a holding or fact, he'd catch it. This forced me to prove to myself that I could not make such a mistake before these arguments took place - which in turn forced me to basically not sleep for most of 2 weeks. I will say, in general, that my opponent did not so thoroughly master the material and got excoriated for it, repeatedly, while I enjoyed what seemed to be a massive credibility advantage.

He does not need long explanation or argument by analogy - I'm not sure any Judge really does, to be fair. What I learned, and alluded to above, is what one can learn from reps at the highest level. For two weeks, he kept me on my toes and eager to be perfect, because that is what it took to match his preparation and mind. I believe my practice has been benefited and elevated through that experience - I've now observed, and participated for a short but significant time in, the highest levels of legal argument and persuasive argument, before an audience smarter and more experienced than me, and at least equally as well prepared as me, and to be blunt I've not encountered that intimidating combination in any other courtroom in my life.

You can't argue well in that circumstance without forcing yourself to understand everything about your case, perfectly, or without anticipating the weaknesses you will need to address credibly. I don't know that I would have tried earlier cases in my career the way that I did if I had earlier had this experience, and that's due to the benefits of the experience in Judge Alsup's courtroom. It was a privilege, what else can really be said?

He also has a very cool habit of strongly encouraging, if not outright ordering, that young attorneys handle pieces of cases. He is committed to the growth of young attorneys, something that is a SHOCKING rarity on the bench and in the practice of law in large, middle, and boutique firms.

My advice to you is that if your case is strong and legally well-founded, you will prosper in his Court. If not, he will figure it out, and you will suffer for it.

EDIT: And, I must add, I would pity the plaintiff's attorney who brought a borderline-extortionate claim and lacked the wisdom to settle before Judge Alsup had the chance to express in open Court how problematic the claim really is.
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