Me around the Web

by on September 30, 2008 · 4 comments

Three new pieces by me are up this week:

  • Over at Ars Technica, I’ve got the first installment of a three-part series on the future of self-driving cars. The technology has made tremendous strides in the last five years, and we’re now at the point where it’s less a science fiction concept and more an engineering challenge. Cars that can navigate simplified urban roads already exist in university research labs, and cars on the market today have simple forms of self-driving, including adaptive cruise control and automatic parking. Driven by safety concerns, these technologies will only get more sophisticated until (perhaps sometime in the 2030s) they converge with the academic research and make possible the first fully autonomous vehicle. In the next two installments, I’ll talk about the social implications of this shift and the new policy issues that are likely to arise as a result.
  • My inaugural post at Freedom to Tinker is up. Cato recently unveiled the latest edition of its Supreme Court Review, which included an article by F. Scott Kieff about the Quanta v. LG decision. Kieff argues that the high court’s unanimous decision on the patent exhaustion doctrine undermined the freedom of contract. I offer a different perspective on the decision. I’ll be posting at FTT regularly (including a follow-up post on Quanta this week) so I encourage you to subscribe, if you don’t already.
  • There’s an “ask the experts” feature at Cato on Campus, Cato’s website for college students. A student emailed in asking about the libertarian position on “intellectual property,” so explained the basic divisions among libertarians (which are largely the same divisions among non-libertarians) on the issue, and then gave three examples of changes I’d like to see to patent and copyright law.

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