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About azzuri82

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  1. It's the 'halfway house' systems that scare me. I have similar functions in my own car, but it's been shown that with the 50/50 autonomous systems that the drivers themselves feel a false sense of security, it causes concentration loss and thus can cause (normally pretty serious) accidents at high speed. I'd rather the autonomous system either did everything, or nothing. I'm not sure our brains are adapted well to this sort of halfway house system - you either need to be in control or not.
  2. azzuri82

    Premium bonds

    I put £50k in last month for the first time and this month won £100 - well above expectations!
  3. azzuri82

    The Big Short Thread

    see - Tesla "can't afford" to sell $35,000 Model 3's as it'd be "...losing too much money" on them.
  4. This is why it'll happen.
  5. Very difficult to know when to buy and sell. The big companies tend to have plans 2-3 years out, whether they have maxxed out their vehicle purchases for now, who knows?!
  6. azzuri82

    The Big Short Thread

    My shorts list of UK equities is a sea of red today so far! Selloff continues.
  7. Straight line is rarely used in the industry. Most use 15% per annum ( the amount of depreciation decreases annually after year 1 with the decrease in value of the vehicle). Vehicle will likely still be worth around 15-20% of its purchase value after 10 years.
  8. This is a possibility. Local councils subsidising buses is very much a possibility if you take the cost of a driver out of the equation. When the margins disappear in the industry (as has been felt with public school contracts in the last 10 years), the councils might have to step in and pick up the pieces out of necessity.
  9. If you're running an efficient operation ( Stagecoach and the likes definitely are - the vehicles don't sit idle), it's the labour. If you're talking long haul express journeys, it's a close call if you include maintenance, fuel and vehicles etc., but one of these VDL or Van Hool premium coaches Stagecoach runs that cost £300-350k new and depreciated over 6-7 years before being sold on will cost them less than £100/day over the period of ownership. They'd expect these vehicles to be on the road 28/29 days a month. I'm still willing to bet that the direct driver labour costs 20% more than the vehicles, fuel and maintenance combined. If you mean the local routes on buses rather than coaches, the labour will be a much bigger part of their costs. A Dennis vehicle might last for 15-20 years if maintained properly - and although maintenance costs can be quite high, again this is mostly labour, and Stagecoach depots will have their own full-time maintenance guys, so it likely cuts the cost of maintenance in half. Smaller, local operators (that make little to no operating profit), perhaps the vehicles are a larger part of their costs, but this tends to be family firms outwith the South-East of England, and they only make money when they actually sell a vehicle on at 5/6 years' old that they've owned from new. Getting hold of reliable, experienced drivers in the industry is very difficult. I was speaking to an small'ish operator from the South East of England a few months ago who told me that in order to keep hold of their experienced drivers over the summer months to take advantage of the tourist trade, they were having to pay them £300-350/day.
  10. I can't see how fully driver-less / autonomous vehicles are going to do anything other than decimate public transport providers in the short-to-medium term. Given that the biggest cost in running any form of road vehicles is the labour of the driver, who are broadly paid the same whether they are driving a taxi, bus, coach, whatever, you take this cost out of the equation and it removes the necessity for the vast majority of buses on our roads. Why would someone pay 50p for an autonomous-vehicle bus journey, when the equivalent journey in an on-demand private vehicle/autonomous taxi could be had for £1.00? This is why Uber are continually allowed to run up such massive losses for years. Their private equity investors are betting that as soon as technology catches up re: autonomous vehicles, Uber can ditch the drivers entirely and will be in pole position to take over the world in such journeys.
  11. The amount of stuff people travel with often inflates to the amount required to fill their bag/s. This is basic human nature; "I'm allowed a bag this big. Okay, so I'll take this, this and this. Okay, there's still more room. Do I need another change of clothes, or a hairdryer, or x, y, z etc.?", and suddenly the bag is/was full - 20 kilos. Say what you like about RyanAir, but their cabin baggage policy and charging for hold bags was quite revolutionary at the time - it made people actually assess whether they needed everything they normally travelled with - it's amazing how when you charge 'extra' for something like luggage, even if it's a simple token amount like £10, how many people realise they don't actually need anything like they previously travelled with. I think the 'new' policy only affects flights from 1st November onwards, this might explain why.
  12. Yeah know about the cabin baggage charges - we are taking our 14-month old daughter with us so just paying the extra £30 for a hold bag as we have to put the buggy in the hold and wait at the carousel anyways. They have highlighted these new charges as being important to more efficiently load/unloading passengers at the gate - be interesting to see if it works.
  13. I seem to go through periods of preferring one budget airline over another. I've had it with Easyjet completely now - we've just booked with RyanAir for the first time in around 5 years to go to Berlin in November - although RyanAir are bastards - at least they fuck you over transparently.
  14. I'm guessing you've not been unfortunate enough to experience the regular delays on their prop services to the Hebrides (previously run under the 'LoganAir' brand) and Glasgow and Edinburgh - Belfast. From my limited experience of FlyBe on the above routes fairly regularly - 2-3 hour delays are commonplace - I'd estimate around 50% of my booked flights with them have been subject to such delays. Granted, it might just be very bad luck - but after about 7-8 bookings over 2 years and 4 extremely long delays, we just gave up booking with them. If you've travelled Easyjet recently - they are a shadow of the company they were 10+ years ago. Completely demoralised staff who don't seem to give two hoots, ageing aircraft, poor onboard customer service etc. I had a flight with Jet2 recently, we took Easyjet on the way out to Crete and Jet2 on the way back - like night and day. The aircraft was more spacious/modern, onboard services/food/drink/snacks available much better, staff were much more helpful and cheery, just all round a much better experience. Will be avoiding Easyjet in the future if it can be helped.
  15. azzuri82

    The dud Kangaroo bounce thread

    They don't change road tax retrospectively on vehicle - the price you are paying now is broadly the amount you'll be paying as long as you own that vehicle (subject to small inflationary increases). The government know that these vehicles reach their end of life generally after 15 years anyway. The best bargains out there at the moment are low emissions diesels registered on or before 31st March 2017 - before the new rules/higher tax bands came into play. For a lot of people, the car/s they've bought in the last 2-3 years will likely be the last vehicle they ever own: I bumped into a Brazilian autonomous vehicle engineer at a party sometime in 2012 and he assured me that there'd be an autonomous vehicle on the road by 2019/20'ish with the progress the industry was making in general, and that a full scale rollout wouldbe available from 2021/22 onwards. In hindsight, the timescales look accurate'ish, and it will likely change the nature of our towns and cities and how and where people live and work, as well as travel itself. Will we own vehicles in 5/10/20 years' time, will it be worth it when the biggest cost to taking a taxi is the labour of the driver themselves (at around 80-90% of overall cost)? It's predicted that with vehicles sitting idle over 95% of the time, it could cut the total numbers of vehicles on our roads by 80% or more. Will it get rid of traffic jams and rush hour travel? If so, will people bother living in city centres any longer if it's much quicker, easier and cheaper to travel in and out from further afar? It occurred to me the other day that my 1 year-old daughter will likely never learn to drive a car at any point, and we'll be perhaps the last generation to drive (I'm 35).