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Porsche Previews Revolutionary Production Facility for All-Electric Taycan
Porsche will use a system of automated guided vehicles similar to what's used in the aerospace industry.
... The heavy investment in staff and manufacturing equipment is part of Porsche's $7.4 billion investment into electrification. Despite being an astronomically large expenditure, the German luxury sports car maker states that it is still targeting a profit margin of 15 percent across its brand. Profits will be earned by selling digital offerings in addition to its luxury vehicles.

“We predict that over 50 percent of Porsche models delivered from 2025 will be electrified,” said the Deputy Chairman of Porsche's Executive Board, Lutz Meschke. "In addition to efficient processes, the revenue from digital products and services should also increasingly contribute to our economic success."

Production for the 600 horsepower all-electric Taycan is said to begin in 2019 and may lead to disruption of auto sales among other EV manufacturers. The move towards electrification has been enabled by the recognition of Tesla as a threat to the luxury brand's auto sales. Porsche's North America CEO Klaus Zellmer admitted that some of its potential customers were lost because the options that were being sought out by consumers simply didn't exist in the automaker's product line, but with the introduction of the Taycan that could all change.

Policy and solutions / Re: Tesla glory/failure
« on: Today at 02:09:56 PM »
The much-anticipated Version 9 (V9) [moving towards Full Self Driving] software recently began rolling out to Tesla cars via Over The Air (OTA) push.  Different features are updated on all models, but cars with the latest, Level 2 hardware (HW2, AP2) see the most improvement.

Background on HW2: 
It has 8 cameras all around the Model S and Model X. 3 of them are front-facing, one narrow forward camera with a range of 250m, another mid-range 150m, which acts as the main camera, and a wide forward camera with a shorter range of 60m.
There are also cameras on each side of the front fenders and B-pillars – and finally, there’s a rear-facing one.
Tesla also uses radar and GPS data, but the cameras are becoming increasingly more important as Tesla uses more of them with each software update.

And on V9:
First look at Tesla's version 9 software update with new UI, features, and more

Now comes the nerdy, exciting bit 8) , via a detailed examination of the new Autopilot Neural Net system, posted on the TMC forum.  Brief excerpts:
"Well, the V9 network appears to be camera agnostic. It can process the output from any camera on the car using the same weight file."
"Being camera agnostic means the network has to have a better sense of what an object looks like under all kinds of camera distortions"
"...fringe benefit of improved computational efficiency...just have the one set of weights you don’t have to constantly be swapping weight sets in and out of your GPU memory"
"This network is far larger than any vision NN I’ve seen publicly disclosed and I’m just reeling at the thought of how much data it must take to train it"
"The NN should be able to identify every object in every direction at distances up to hundreds of meters and also provide approximate instantaneous relative movement for all of those objects"
"As a neural network dork I couldn’t be more pleased"

From the post:
Various V8 versions included networks for pillar and repeater cameras in the binaries but AFAIK nobody outside Tesla ever saw those networks in operation. Normal AP use on V8 seemed to only include the use of main and narrow for driving and the wide angle forward camera for rain sensing. In V9 it’s very clear that all cameras are being put to use for all the AP2 cars.

The basic camera NN (neural network) arrangement is an Inception V1 type CNN with L1/L2/L3ab/L4abcdefg layer arrangement (architecturally similar to V8 main/narrow camera up to end of inception blocks but much larger)
   ◦   about 5x as many weights as comparable portion of V8 net
   ◦   about 18x as much processing per camera (front/back)
The V9 network takes 1280x960 images with 3 color channels and 2 frames per camera from, for example, the main camera. That’s 1280x960x3x2 as an input, or 7.3M. The V8 main camera was 640x416x2 or 0.5M - 13x less data.

For perspective, V9 camera network is 10x larger and requires 200x more computation when compared to Google’s Inception V1 network from which V9 gets it’s underlying architectural concept. That’s processing *per camera* for the 4 front and back cameras. Side cameras are 1/4 the processing due to being 1/4 as many total pixels. With all 8 cameras being processed in this fashion it’s likely that V9 is straining the compute capability of the APE. The V8 network, by comparison, probably had lots of margin.

network outputs:
   ◦   V360 object decoder (multi level, processed only)
   ◦   back lane decoder (back camera plus final processed)
   ◦   side lane decoder (pillar/repeater cameras plus final processed)
   ◦   path prediction pp decoder (main/narrow/fisheye cameras plus final processed)
   ◦   “super lane” decoder (main/narrow/fisheye cameras plus final processed)

See the entire post by jimmy_d here:

6-second Video clip of V9 in action, recognizing people, cars, and vans...:
“Tesla V9 is FREAKING NUTS. It shows everything around you!”

"If you melt those ice sheets in Greenland and Antarctica, the water levels will rise and come to the level of the Statue of Liberty's elbow," warns astrophysicist @neiltyson as he discusses climate change with @VanJones68 on The Van Jones Show on CNN.
Minute+ video clip at the link.

This is terrible. Nonscientific fear-mongering IF'S. The Ice caps are not going anywhere soon.
These kind of things just push people away.

Since the calm, reasoned expanations of “a few feet in a few decades” has done essentially nothing to get people to act on climate change, it seems clear a more radical approach is required.  There’s a reason the “don’t text and drive” PSAs include shocking car crashes.

One interesting aspect here is that it involves a beloved scientist making the statements on CNN.  That invites a useful audience, albeit on a less-watched show.

Policy and solutions / Re: Tesla glory/failure
« on: Today at 12:15:16 AM »
8 “Impossible” Goals Tesla Achieved
October 14th, 2018
You may want to write this off as a clickbait fluff piece. Well, it may clickbait (depending on the definition you’re using) but it is certainly not a fluffy Furby, a flufferbot, or a feckless sideshow. In fact, I think the points illustrated below are often essential for understanding Tesla and its critics.

The point is not, “Hey, Tesla did some things.” The biggest point, actually, is that every step of the way there have been loud voices claiming Tesla’s goals were impossible and that Tesla would fail and collapse just around the corner. While the official “Tesla Death Watch” was shut off approximately a decade ago, some of the critics have stuck around and the claims that Tesla’s next step will basically be its last step have never ended.

No matter how much such claims are wrong, when they are made continuously for a decade, people start to associate the company with the claims. Some people start to associate Tesla with failure even though it has achieved stunning success after stunning success. It takes stepping back for a moment in order to realize that these associations are manufactured — were planted in our heads by incorrect claims.

Let’s start in 2013 with some comments from George Blankenship, who had formerly worked at Apple and was then a top exec at Tesla:

“Everything we do is difficult. And why is it so difficult? It’s because everything we do is impossible to everybody else. When you think about what Tesla does, and you go back four or five years ago and you say: ‘I am going to do an electric car that is going to go over 200 miles, goes zero to 60 in under 4 seconds and it is going to look great.’ And what is everyone going to say? It’s impossible.

“And as soon as we do that, what do we say? ‘Now we are going to build a 4-door sedan that seats seven people and goes 300 miles and goes zero to 60 in under 4.5 seconds. Impossible for everybody else on the planet except for Tesla.

“And then you say: ‘Now, how are we going to talk to customers about this and how are we going to do this?’ So, ‘why don’t we go open up stores in the mall and have people wander in, and we will tell them about electric vehicles, and we will try really hard not to sell them anything? Why don’t we do that? Really?’

“And that’s what we do every day.”

Indeed. That should kick us off.

[ List follows....]

Policy and solutions / Re: Cars, cars and more cars. And trucks, and....
« on: October 14, 2018, 10:12:10 PM »
Reviewing Norway’s amazingly fast transition to electric vehicles:

Plug-In Cars = 60% Of New Car Sales In Norway In September

Policy and solutions / Re: Tesla glory/failure
« on: October 14, 2018, 09:46:37 PM »
Tesla deploys new Powerpack project that could save Colorado ratepayers $1 million per year
Tesla was an “easy choice” for the project:
“I feel they’re kind of battle tested. They’ve been operating cars and doing things with batteries for a long time. There’s a bit of a known quantity to the Tesla battery,”

It’s the electric utility’s first battery energy storage project, but Marizza said that they need to deploy more:

“Everybody is watching, there will be a lot of eyeballs on this project and see how successful we are with it and I’m sure it will spur some other activity in this state,”

United Power expects the Powerpack project to come online in the coming weeks.

“Despite FUD, the #Tesla brand has crossed the inflection point: it is increasingly associated *across the world* with innovation, hard work, passion, and safety, thanks to customers.
Next up:
- Growth AND profits
- Highest quality
- Mass-market”

Consequences / Re: Hurricane season 2018
« on: October 14, 2018, 06:26:11 PM »
No Food, No FEMA: Hurricane Michael’s Survivors Are Furious
The destruction is everywhere, at every corner, as far as the eye can see. Mexico Beach, where the hurricane’s eyewall slammed into Florida with 140 mph winds, is flattened. Panama City, gem of the Emerald Coast, looks like a bomb has been dropped on it. It is now a desolate landscape of toppled power poles, transformers, electrical lines, severed trees, and metal roofings, twisted and tangled into a sea of debris. Nearly all homes, businesses, stores, banks, schools are severely damaged or destroyed, skeletal remains with blown out windows or crushed facades. To residents, it is unrecognizable.
Since the storm, there’s been no electricity and no water in Panama City. Emergency disaster relief was yet to be seen in strength as of Saturday morning and residents were growing more frustrated and desperate.

Chantelle Goolspy sat in her car making phone calls to get help. Goolspy and many of her neighbors live in a public housing area in downtown Panama City that was badly devastated. 

“We’re in need of food, water, anything, we’re not getting any help. The whole street needs help,” Goolspy told the Red Cross. “FEMA referred me to you. That person told me to call 211.” ...

"If you melt those ice sheets in Greenland and Antarctica, the water levels will rise and come to the level of the Statue of Liberty's elbow," warns astrophysicist @neiltyson as he discusses climate change with @VanJones68 on The Van Jones Show on CNN.
Minute+ video clip at the link.

Consequences / Re: Hurricane season 2018
« on: October 14, 2018, 05:29:56 PM »
“70 forecast advisories issued over a 20-day period......summed up in 10 short seconds. I feel like forecasters at the @NHC_Atlantic deserve a medal or something (or at the very least, a round of applause). Nicely done sir. #Leslie”
Ten-second video at the link.

Policy and solutions / Re: Tesla glory/failure
« on: October 14, 2018, 05:24:14 PM »
Model 3 VINs (@Model3VINs)
10/14/18, 11:07 AM
#Tesla registered 9,426 new #Model3 VINs. ~52% estimated to be dual motor. Highest VIN is 148386. ...

30,478 Model 3 Vehicle Identification Numbers registered in October so far.

Tesla reaches milestone of 100,000 Model 3 vehicles
It took the company quite a few years to achieve 100,000 Model S and Model X sales.  Today however, just a year after a slow start in production, Tesla has reached the milestone of 100,000 Model 3 vehicles produced. That’s not only much faster than Tesla’s other vehicles, it’s faster than any other EV model in history.

Policy and solutions / Re: Tesla glory/failure
« on: October 14, 2018, 04:52:15 PM »
  Sales of Tesla EVs smash Jaguar and Porsche gassers.

Tesla Crushes Porsche & Jaguar Worldwide
Tesla is scoring too many blowout sales milestones. It needs to cool it.
Before jumping into the latest number-crunching fun, here’s a quick recap of some notable sales milestones Tesla just achieved in case you missed them:

   •   The Tesla Model 3 is now the 4th best selling car in the USA.
   •   Tesla is now the #1 top selling luxury vehicle brand in the USA.
   •   Tesla has had 25,913% sales growth in 6 years, from 321 sales in Q3 2012 to 83,500 sales in Q3 2018.
   •   Tesla more than doubled its previous quarterly delivery record in Q3.
   •   The Tesla Model 3 is the #1 highest grossing car (in terms of monthly revenue) in the USA.
   •   The Tesla Model 3 is the #1 top selling American car in the USA.

But that’s just the beginning.
I reported at the end of July that Tesla production seemed to be passing Jaguar production (worldwide), and I reported earlier in July that Tesla may overtake Porsche (worldwide).
I just calculated the 3rd quarter totals for these companies* and Tesla beat both Jaguar and Porsche. In fact, despite the other brands seeing modest growth, Tesla crushed them.

Brand  Q3 2018
Tesla       83,500
Jaguar    41,940
Porsche   65,964

Naturally, the most important thing is that every single Tesla sale is an electric car sale, which means less pollution, less global warming, and less noise.
Tesla’s sales growth is driven by the Model 3, which is somehow competing with cars half or a third of its price for the top selling car title in the United States. It seems that Tesla just produced the 100,000th Model 3 in the past week or so. Both Bloomberg’s production tracker and Teslike’s production tracker went passed the 100,000 car milestone this week. How long till the next 100,000 Model 3s are out the door and in customers’ hands?

Policy and solutions / Re: Tesla glory/failure
« on: October 14, 2018, 01:32:02 PM »
Tesla is too big to fail — but not for the reason you might think
   •   Tesla has been blistered by criticism for months, but the company and CEO Elon Musk are still standing.
   •   Tesla survived the summer and Musk settled with the SEC just in time to witness the UN issue its most dire warnings about global warming to date.
   •   If we have only until 2040 to drastically reduce the warming trend, we can't afford to lose Tesla and the potentially millions of electric-vehicles it could sell.

Tesla isn't big — but it's too big to fail.

The bottom line is that the species needs Tesla to sell 200,000 cars this year, 400,000 cars next year, and as soon as possible, millions of vehicles annually. And that alone won't be enough. All the other automakers need to join Tesla and replace the planet's one billion gas-burning cars with much cleaner alternatives.

This means that Tesla is too big to fail, even though it isn't very big. What's actually too big is Tesla's impact; without Musk's urging, the limited electric-car race we're now witnessing wouldn't have happened. If Tesla does collapse, going to zero as some of its more aggressive short-sellers hope it does, we could lose five or ten years in the framework of the twenty we have to work with.
We simply can't lose those years.

So just as General Motors and Chrysler were too big to fail in the financial crisis — their demises would have displaced hundreds of thousands of workers and blown a hole in US GDP — Tesla is too big to fail in the face of a climate crisis.

A lot of executives in the automotive industry are retiring. They don’t have any fight left in them. Most auto makers are a jobs program for people who build diesel engines. No one has the courage to lead that change, to dismantle the machine that builds the pollution.

EVs are too expensive, BMW cries.  An odd thing for a high-priced, premium carmaker to say.  As it works to secure cobalt supply until 2030 — but well before then, batteries may no longer need it.
The Reason Why BMW Is Not Going All in on Electric Cars
Even though BMW plans to grow its portfolio of electrified vehicles, Frölich sounds anxious about leaving the gas-guzzling internal combustion engine behind. “So, it’s a nightmare that an electrified vehicle will cost the same as a combustion-engined car,” Frölich says. This could be contributing to the company’s lag in sales this year and why many of its customers could be turning to Tesla.

“Tesla's Model 3, meanwhile, goes Pac-Man on BMW and the entire mid-size luxury sedan market”

Policy and solutions / Re: Tesla glory/failure
« on: October 14, 2018, 01:02:40 PM »
Again in September, the Tesla Model 3 generated more revenue than any other passenger car in the U.S., at any price.

Congratulations, @elonmusk and @Tesla on the #1 selling car [by revenue] in the U.S. in the most recent quarter, beating the 2nd place Toyota Camry by more than $1 billion!

Policy and solutions / Re: Tesla glory/failure
« on: October 14, 2018, 12:04:26 AM »
Nope, you are crooked.  They did have those reservations, and only your paranoia suggests otherwise.

Policy and solutions / Re: Cars, cars and more cars. And trucks, and....
« on: October 14, 2018, 12:02:18 AM »
Petroleum is responsible for the most fossil fuel emissions. Reducing oil use is essential to lowering our carbon footprint.

Policy and solutions / Re: Tesla glory/failure
« on: October 13, 2018, 11:51:32 PM »
C.  None of the above.

Policy and solutions / Re: Tesla glory/failure
« on: October 13, 2018, 11:47:58 PM »
”($942 million divided by 420,000 would give an average deposit of $2,243 which sounds sort of OK?)”

Many people have spent many hours trying to work this out. :)

This difficulty is that Model S/X reservations are $5,000, so it messes up the math.

Policy and solutions / Re: Tesla glory/failure
« on: October 13, 2018, 11:41:35 PM »
alright, serious question sig, oren, arch, rob: do you believe that when Tesla announced 4 months ago that they had 420,000 model 3 reservations remaining that they were telling the truth?

Your ridiculous obsession with the number 420 suggests you have a stronger then normal connection to it.

lol. it is your hero that seems to have the obsession. im just pointing it out. so i take it you are too much of a coward to actually answer my question.

This section of Tesla’s report freaks you out because if you fixate on one part of one number you can say it has a double meaning?  Seriously??  ::)  There’s a “66” in there, does that bother you, too?  How about the “000”?  Surely the 11,1 must be a hidden code as well?  Unbelievable.

”11,166 Model 3 vehicles and 3,892 Model S and X vehicles were in transit to customers at the end of Q2, and will be delivered in early Q3. The high number of customer vehicles in transit for Model 3 was primarily due to a significant increase in production towards the end of the quarter.

The remaining net Model 3 reservations count at the end of Q2 still stood at roughly 420,000 even though we have now delivered 28,386 Model 3 vehicles to date. When we start to provide customers an opportunity to see and test drive the car at their local store, we expect that our orders will grow faster than our production rate. Model 3 Dual Motor All Wheel Drive and Model 3 Dual Motor All Wheel Drive Performance cars will also be available in our stores shortly.”

- Tesla Q2 2018 Vehicle Production and Deliveries report, July 02,2018

Policy and solutions / Re: Tesla glory/failure
« on: October 13, 2018, 10:48:40 PM »
alright, serious question sig, oren, arch, rob: do you believe that when Tesla announced 4 months ago that they had 420,000 model 3 reservations remaining that they were telling the truth?

Your ridiculous obsession with the number 420 suggests you have a stronger then normal connection to it.

Policy and solutions / Re: Tesla glory/failure
« on: October 13, 2018, 10:10:14 PM »
Well, the $7,500 that rich people received to help them pay for their luxury Teslas will be gone before it dribbles down to help the merely well off pay for their promised, but not delivered $35,000 Model 3s.
Buyers need their reservations in by the 15th, and take delivery by the end of the year. Those that handed over their $1,000 based on promises of a $35,000 Tesla, then added another $2,500 to 'keep their place in line", have found that the line handing out $7,500 closed before they had a chance to reach the winners circle.

One more time:  The $2,500 is required when you actually place your order, not to “keep your place in line.”

And consider that if Elon/Tesla had not moved Model 3 production up by two years after the unexpectedly large response when most people made their reservations in 2016, Tesla would have been over the tax’s 200,000 car limit due to Model S/X deliveries alone, well before the first Model 3 came off the line.

Sure, it sucks to miss out on a potential $7,500 rebate (IF you qualified for it, by owing more than that amount in taxes, among other things).  But Tesla certainly never guaranteed it.  Tens of thousands will get a $3,750 rebate, and, as many have said, the rebate will affect what options they order — not whether or not they buy the car.

Also:  Oct 15 is a “guarantee” date, directed at everyone in the U.S., to account for production and delivery.  However, if you live in California (or travel there to pick up your car, as many do, so they can tour the factory, etc.) you could possibly order after that date and still get your car in time.  Also, you could buy a car from inventory on December 31 and qualify, time-wise.

Policy and solutions / Re: Tesla glory/failure
« on: October 13, 2018, 09:47:49 PM »

A total Tesla troll.  See his tweets.  And he stopped “reporting” back in August.  His fan base is $TSLAQ (Tesla stock shorters), so naturally his message is negative.

@skabooshka has an odd habit of choosing the times when the lots are less busy. I work in the area, and I can assure you they are much busier than he would lead you to believe. Selective editing...nothing more

skabooshka (@skabooshka).  8/11/18, 7:49 PM
Friends, the Daily Production project has been fun (& very accurate). But I now need to take the project down for a variety of reasons, incl. personal bandwidth. If you need to persuade me otherwise, DMs are open. But for now, thanks to all of $TSLAQ for your insights/analysis

Policy and solutions / Re: Cars, cars and more cars. And trucks, and....
« on: October 13, 2018, 09:36:29 PM »
Bloomberg writer says Big Oil should be concerned about Amazon getting into the EV-charger installation business — one of the last obstacles to EV ownership.

Background, from September:
Audi working with Amazon to sell electric car chargers with installation as a turn-key solution,438.msg173357.html#msg173357

Big Oil Should Be Worried About Amazon’s Battery Play
The last bastion of the fossil fuel industry was just breached.

While you were busy reading Elon Musk’s tweets, Audi AG was unveiling its Tesla challenger, the E-tron. One of the most interesting bits of the glitzy launch concerned simply plugging the thing in: The carmaker, it turns out, has teamed up with Inc. to install home chargers for E-tron buyers.

While Amazon helping to get new plugs put into garages may not scream revolution, it should still worry the likes of Exxon Mobil Corp. The oil industry has long been more concerned with generating supply than encouraging demand—why bother, when drivers had no alternative? The hassle of charging has long been one of the things holding back the electrical vehicle market. Amazon’s entry will make that a whole lot easier, potentially representing a major threat in oil’s biggest market.

The fossil fuel industry should be worried about a company such as Amazon encroaching on its territory. Back in the summer of 2008, three of the world’s five most valuable companies produced oil and gas. Exxon was No. 1. Today, four years after a global collapse in oil prices, Big Tech dominates and Exxon struggles to stay in the top 10.

Amazon momentarily puzzled investors in June 2017 when it announced it would spend $14 billion on the grocery chain Whole Foods; its stock has virtually doubled since. Bubbly this may be, but that’s beside the point: If you’re reading this online, you’re enjoying the legacy of one of the biggest bubbles ever. What matters is that Amazon has taken a toehold in yet two more businesses: energy and transportation. Its shareholders won’t care, but Big Oil should.

● Alexa, Can You Charge My Car?
Speaking at a London conference, Nathaniel Bullard of Bloomberg New Energy Finance listed some ways Amazon might make EV ownership more attractive. What if Alexa could place your Whole Foods order while you were on your way to the store? Or start charging your car when electricity prices are lowest?

● Reined In
Spending on upstream oil and gas development has declined by $308 billion since 2014. Why invest so much in reserves if demand for oil might falter?

● Over the Top
Ten years ago, the phrase “peak oil” referred to supply. Today it’s more often used in the context of peak demand—a much less cheery prospect for the fossil fuel industry.

● Big Oil Meets Big Tech
In the summer of 2008 fossil fuel companies ruled the capital markets. Today they’re lucky if they can still compete with the biggest players, almost all of which serve the digital economy.

Policy and solutions / Re: Tesla glory/failure
« on: October 13, 2018, 07:08:33 PM »
Tesla Model 3 #1 Selling Plug-In Electric Car In Canada For September
Tesla Model 3 once again leads the Canadian plug-in market.
Plug-in electric car sales for September in Canada are estimated by at approximately 4,396, which translates to year-over-year growth of 93% at a market share of over 2.5%.

The pace of growth slowed down as the generous $14,000 CAD incentive to purchase EVs in Ontario comes to an end (for cars ordered on or before July 11, the delivery needs to be completed by September 10). It means that October will bring much lower numbers.

Q4 will be an interesting test of losing Ontario’s very generous incentive vs. the increasing demand for EVs.  (October will provide only a partial answer, since Tesla deliveries have historically been highest in the last month of a quarter.)

Policy and solutions / Re: Tesla glory/failure
« on: October 13, 2018, 04:52:59 PM »
As the old saying goes, "We lose money on every sale, but we make it up on volume."

I see you are taking the “Producing too many cars” Tesla Bear argument.,2406.msg176780.html#msg176780

Policy and solutions / Re: Cars, cars and more cars. And trucks, and....
« on: October 13, 2018, 04:33:23 PM »
“Shared Autonomy”
The car makes suggestions, and asks the driver what to do.
Article, paper and short demonstration videos.

MIT Human-Centered Autonomous Vehicle
Building effective, enjoyable, and safe autonomous vehicles is a lot harder than has historically been considered. The reason is that, simply put, an autonomous vehicle must interact with human beings. This interaction is not a robotics problem nor a machine learning problem nor a psychology problem nor an economics problem nor a policy problem. It is all of these problems put into one. It challenges our assumptions about the limitations of human beings at their worst and the capabilities of artificial intelligence systems at their best. The following video introduces the Human-Centered Autonomous Vehicle (HCAV) that we use as an illustrative case study of exploring concepts in shared autonomy….

Policy and solutions / Re: Oil and Gas Issues
« on: October 13, 2018, 04:16:48 AM »
Findings on the massive residential gas explosions near Boston on Sept 13:

”...the NTSB released preliminary findings showing that Columbia Gas failed to relocate an underground pressure sensor from an abandoned pipe during construction work in Lawrence, triggering a gush of gas into the local network that erupted into explosions and fires that rocked the Merrimack Valley.”

A teenager was killed, more than 20 other people were injured, and thousands of homes and businesses were left without gas heat or hot water.

Markey said Friday that the company took three hours to shut down critical components after the initial blasts, adding that “there is in fact a lack of preparedness that was quite obvious.”
The company is also racing to replace 45 miles of pipeline that were damaged by the over-pressurization. Retired Navy Seabee commander Joseph Albanese, tapped by the company to lead the response effort, has said crews are ahead of a self-imposed Nov. 19 deadline to replace the pipeline.

Columbia Gas has said it will reimburse residents and businesses for all expenses and incurred losses. More than 3,000 people have been placed in temporary housing, such as hotels, apartments, and trailers.

Consequences / Re: Conservative Scientists & its Consequences
« on: October 13, 2018, 03:30:44 AM »
Rolling Stone discusses Richard Alley’s recent talk on sea level rise.

Hurricane Michael, the third most intense storm on record to make landfall in the U.S., has caused widespread destruction, turning places like Mexico Beach, Florida, into a hellscape of broken homes and overturned cars. It will be a while before we learn the full extent of the damage — and the human suffering and death — caused by the storm’s 155 mph winds and the 14-foot storm surge that swamped the coastline.

Bad as the hurricane was, imagine the damage and destruction if that storm surge had been 15 feet or so higher. And if instead of receding, that wall of water never went away. That is what we could be facing in the not-so-distant future if we don’t dramatically cut fossil-fuel pollution.

If that sounds alarmist, watch this short video. In it, you’ll see a scientist named Richard Alley in a Skype discussion with students at Bard College, as well as with Eban Goodstein, director of the Graduate Programs in Sustainability at Bard. It would be just another nerdy Skype chat except Alley is talking frankly about something that few scientists have the courage to say in public: As bad as you think climate change might be in the coming decades, reality could be far worse. Within the lifetime of the students he’s talking with, Alley says, there’s some risk — small but not as small as you might hope — that the seas could rise as much as 15-to-20 feet. ...

Policy and solutions / Re: Tesla glory/failure
« on: October 13, 2018, 03:10:57 AM »
Tesla patents new type of cable easier to manipulate by robots in move to automate production

Elon Musk has deployed nearly half a million cars that don’t have autopilot activated, but the car is hardware-ready with the software installed. Each car has a credit card on file. He has a license to print money. He can raise $250 million of pure profit with a simple campaign.

Wifey: Can you come pick me up from the conference I’m at?
Me: Sure babe.
Wifey: I’ll drop a pin and send it to the car.
Me: Ok, I’ll go where the car takes me.

(This is where we are now). #V9

In North Paint we have a bunch of car hoods hanging up with employee signatures that are there to mark important milestones. There’s an M3 hood hanging up that says “100 shipped in one day” and it’s crazy to think that a year ago, 100 cars a day was a big milestone. #tesla
Kato Road has been taken over by delivery trucks. ;D ;D #Tesla
[At the link:  1min+ vid driving past dozens of empty car carriers parked at the sides of the road near hotels where truckers take their prescribed rest.]
- Also, assuming there are 30 trucks and each hold 8 cars, that’s only 240 cars. We build over 700 a day.

Tesla Bears Arguments Chart, revised, shown below, is from:

Policy and solutions / Re: Tesla glory/failure
« on: October 13, 2018, 02:33:33 AM »
Tesla continues Gigafactory 3 preparations with new hiring initiative, $145M real estate bid
 October 12, 2018
Tesla’s preparations for Gigafactory 3 in Shanghai, China are underway, with the company recently listing a number of new job postings for the upcoming facility. The new Shanghai Gigafactory 3 job openings come amidst reports that Tesla is also in the process of acquiring a site where the battery and electric car facility would be constructed on.

Tesla has posted job openings for the Shanghai Gigafactory in the past. That said, the electric car maker posted a new set of job listings for the upcoming facility on October 11, including positions for Senior Managers for Construction, Mechanical Design Engineers for Building Infrastructure, and Electrical Design Engineers. These postings were listed on Tesla’s Careers page on its website, as well as the company’s official WeChat account. Overall, the updated Gigafactory 3 job listings invoke the idea that Tesla is assembling the team it needs to break ground and start the construction of the facility.

From the official recruitment advertisement of Tesla, the Shanghai Gigafactory has entered the stage of preparation for construction. Thanks @congcongcui1 for the info $TSLA #TeslaChina
— vincent (@vincent13031925) October 12, 2018

It should be noted that while Tesla’s targets for Gigafactory 3 are incredibly aggressive, the company’s timeline is not that farfetched. Gigafactory 3, after all, does not need to be fully completed before it begins vehicle production. This is exhibited by Gigafactory 1, which is less than 30% complete but is already operating and supporting the battery needs of the Model 3 production ramp. Gigafactory 3 is also being built in China, a country with a construction workforce that has earned Elon Musk’s approval for its near-surgical efficiency and quickness.

Tesla China update: Sept 26, Shanghai Municipal Planning & Land Resources Ad issued a land transfer announcement for the Q01-05 plot of the 04PD-0303 unit of Lingang Heavy Equipment Industrial Zone 860K sq meters. Approved type of industry is EV manufacturing $TSLA #TeslaChina
(Text image, in Chinese, at the link ;) )

it turns out there is no permitting process in China. Tesla could build a factory in 60 days and be open for business January 1.

Policy and solutions / Re: Tesla glory/failure
« on: October 13, 2018, 02:16:55 AM »
“It's taken just eight years for Elon Musk's electric-vehicle startup to overtake Mercedes-Benz, the company that invented the concept of the car 132 years ago.”

Tesla just outsold Mercedes-Benz in the US for the first time
   •   In the third quarter this year, Tesla sold 69,925 vehicles in the US, while Mercedes-Benz sold 66,542.
   •   Tesla was also a mere 1,754 vehicles from toppling another rival, BMW.
In a note to its clients, Atherton said it expected Tesla to surpass BMW in US sales in the last quarter of 2018.

Tesla starts fourth quarter strong with production of over 11,500 vehicles, including >7,000 Model 3s
Oct. 12th 2018
It looks like the days of unsustainable production bursts are over for Tesla, as the automaker is starting the fourth quarter strong with production of over 11,500 vehicles, including more than 7,000 Model 3s.

Last quarter, we closely tracked Tesla’s production on what turned out to be the company’s biggest quarter ever with just over 80,000 vehicles produced, including over 53,000 Model 3s.  As usual, Tesla finished the quarter strong, but the last week was especially strong with 5,300 Model 3s — a new record for the automaker.

Everyone was asking if Tesla was able to maintain the high production rate after the end of the quarter, and it looks like the answer is mostly yes. A reliable source familiar with Tesla’s production told Electrek that the automaker produced about 11,500 cars (Model S, Model X, and Model 3), including about 7,400 Model 3s, so far this quarter as of earlier today.  It means that Tesla managed to maintain a Model 3 production approaching 5,000 units per week despite an anticipated early quarter slowdown. …

”Model 3 production now appears to be cruising—from the first cars off the line in July 2017, it took about 14 months for the company to build the initial 100,000 Model 3s. At the current rate of production, it will build the second 100,000 in less than six months.”

Policy and solutions / Re: Cars, cars and more cars. And trucks, and....
« on: October 12, 2018, 10:50:49 PM »
Jaguar execs reportedly pondering transition to fully-electric fleet in 10 years
JLR (Jaguar Land Rover) executives are reportedly considering the idea of transitioning Jaguar into an all-electric brand within the next 10 years. The bold transition reportedly involves a phase-out scheme of some of the company’s current offerings over the next five to seven years, which will be followed by the introduction of more electric vehicles.

With this strategy in mind, Jaguar is reportedly preparing to replace its XJ saloon with an all-electric sedan within the next two years. Details of the vehicle remain under wraps, though speculations are high that the XJ replacement will be marketed as a direct competitor to the upcoming Porsche Taycan and the best-selling Tesla Model S. ...

Policy and solutions / Re: Cars, cars and more cars. And trucks, and....
« on: October 12, 2018, 10:34:07 PM »
UK ends PHEV incentive and reduces all-electric vehicle incentive, says it worked too well
The UK government announced several changes today to its Plug-In Car Grant program. They are essentially ending incentives for plug-in hybrid vehicles and they are reducing the incentive for all-electric vehicles.

In a press release, the government states that the program’s success led them to make the change:
“These changes to financial incentives reflect the ongoing success of the PICGin increasing uptake of electric vehicles, a key part of the government’s Road to Zero strategy. ...

U.S. EV Market Share reaches 3%.
... Thank you @elonmusk and @Tesla for making EVs sexy and getting the world to finally start changing.
Image below.

Consequences / Re: Hurricane season 2018
« on: October 12, 2018, 01:50:52 PM »
The second video in this article has an amazing extended section of winds on the ground during the eyewall.

Video from the hurricane hunter plane:
Michael at landfall. The normal "stadium effect" was more like a cylinder, a straight vertical wall 50K ft high. Saw 175 mph flight level winds, ~155 mph at surface. Entered eyewall at 10K ft, ended up in eye down at 8K! Need another tweet to explain what that felt like… “

The four Category 4 U.S. #hurricane landfalls in less than 14 months. #HurricaneMichael #Michael
Image below.

Policy and solutions / Re: Oil and Gas Issues
« on: October 12, 2018, 02:11:02 AM »
From the Onion (satire):

ExxonMobil CEO Depressed After Realizing Earth Could End Before They Finish Extracting All The Oil

Policy and solutions / Re: Cars, cars and more cars. And trucks, and....
« on: October 12, 2018, 01:55:45 AM »
Ford Mustang 250
Mini Cooper Countryman 280

I can cherry-pick just like you!

I showed my source for the 300 mile average figure.  If you can find a better one, then post it!

Consequences / Re: Hurricane season 2018
« on: October 12, 2018, 12:53:20 AM »
”FEMA has no idea of the likelihood of rescuers finding survivors, or bodies, said spokesman Ignatius Carroll.  "We can't search every pile of rubble."
Rescuers look for survivors after Michael obliterates Florida beach town

Massive relief and recovery effort unfolding on US 231 S. coming into Panama City.
Video clip at the link.

Policy and solutions / Re: Cars, cars and more cars. And trucks, and....
« on: October 11, 2018, 08:36:30 PM »
Tesla has a car which goes 340 miles with 120kw/h.

- No Tesla has a 120kW/h battery.  (Yet! ;) )

- On a full tank of gas, an average ICE vehicle has a range of about 300 miles (483 km).

Policy and solutions / Re: Tesla glory/failure
« on: October 11, 2018, 08:05:57 PM »
Everyone who says, “Why aren’t we moving faster to address climate change?” should super appreciate Tesla and Musk’s gutsy, risky approach to doing things differently.

NO. Just no. If 100% adoption of Tesla's grand plan would move the world to a substantially better trajectory, then sure. But no.

Even if Tesla/EV could 100% take over the transportation industry in the next 2 decades (which i doubt), and even if that led to a 80% reduction in craddle to grave transport related emissions (which i doubt), that would only lead to a 11% reduction in global emissions.

It’s a start!  So, we simply need nine more Elons! ;D

No single answer will get us off fossil fuels.  Duh!  We need many different solutions.
But can you name anyone else who has done more than Elon Musk and his companies to reduce carbon emissions, and move the rest of an industry toward reducing carbon emissions? 

Policy and solutions / Re: Tesla glory/failure
« on: October 11, 2018, 07:45:56 PM »
As Elon Musk's character constantly gets dragged into evaluations of Tesla, here's a recent article on the subject that I found rather balanced.

Musk is a one in ten million-type person. There are only a few people capable of not only willing one game-changing company into existence, but at least two and maybe more, depending on how you count. The ability to build a Tesla or a SpaceX requires a mindset that no one can stop you. The concept of “no” can’t exist in Musk’s world, nor can the presumed authority of someone to tell him no.
If “Excessive Elon” didn’t attack those standing in his way, he wouldn’t be Elon Musk. If his superpower was turned down even a bit, he might not have been capable of willing Tesla and SpaceX to life. That doesn’t justify his recent behavior, but attempts to understand it.
Excessive Elon hurts Tesla most with team-building. One criterion we use for assessing private companies is whether or not we’d want to work for the founder. A year ago, we would have answered affirmatively here without much thought. Now, we’re not as sure, and it doesn’t seem like we’re the only ones. The list of high-level departures at Tesla is significant, and we believe well-qualified candidates for the critical COO role may be hesitant to work with Musk. The same can likely be said for adding more qualified board members. The volatility in talent is far more concerning to us for the long-term prospects of Tesla than the short-term moves in stock price.

The 24/7 Wall Street folks may not want to work for Elon, but hundreds of thousands of tech workers do. :) 
Different work ethic between finance and saving the world, I guess.

Recruiting Talent
If you were fresh out of school and wanted a job at a car company, would you rather work at one of the legacy car companies or at Tesla? Tesla is an innovative Silicon Valley company that makes sexy fast cars. If you want to work in battery tech, AI, automation, or many other fields, Tesla is the place that is treading new ground.

In March of 2018, Tesla was on LinkedIn’s list of top companies that American professionals want to work for, placing 5th and outranking Apple and Disney. Tesla is listed along with tech companies, not automakers. They are (and they are perceived as) a tech company that makes cars, rather than just a car company.

Over 500,000 people applied for jobs at Tesla in 2017. With this many candidates, Tesla is able to hire the cream of the crop. To do things that have never been done before, you have to hire highly skilled people.
* Moat: Desirable employer.

Tesla was ranked third, ahead of Apple and Amazon:
Hired Releases 2018 Global Brand Health Report - Company News
To bring clarity to what matters most to job seekers, we asked tech workers which companies they’re most interested in working for, what attracts them to an appealing employer, and what drives them to accept or reject a job offer. Our second annual Brand Health Report recognizes companies who have been named a top employer brand by tech talent and provides insights that help companies improve their talent acquisition strategies to better attract and retain top talent.

Top Global Employer Brands
To gain a deeper understanding of what job seekers value in an employer, we asked our marketplace of tech talent to rank the companies they’d most like to work for. This year respondents named Netflix as the most appealing place to work with a Brand Positivity Index of 86, moving up the ranks from fifth place last year. Directly behind the media streaming giant is Google, Tesla, and SpaceX.

Policy and solutions / Re: Cars, cars and more cars. And trucks, and....
« on: October 11, 2018, 07:15:35 PM »
Are CEO Herbert Diess’s recent comments “scare tactics”? — or a huge hint that VW will not survive the transition to EVs?

“The transformation in speed and impact is difficult to manage.[…] Such an industry can crash faster than many believe.”

VW CEO Warns Against Possible Auto Industry Crash Due To EVs
While Volkswagen has been releasing constant news about how it’s on board with electric vehicles and the automotive group aims to have millions of electric cars on the road by 2025, its CEO Herbert Diess seems to be leading the efforts against the potential emission reduction requirements. In addition, he’s going so far as to try to convince us that the entire automotive industry could crash and 100,000 jobs may be lost.

"industry can crash faster than many believe"
This is a HUGE tell from @Volkswagen CEO:
VW will go bankrupt sooner than many think. …

Previous articles:,438.msg176537.html#msg176537

Policy and solutions / Re: Tesla glory/failure
« on: October 11, 2018, 05:28:03 PM »
Is the recent doubling of the Gigafactory 1 jobs target to 20,000... related to the big Saudi announcement promised for Oct 18?  Consider this timeline, and the recent purchases of Tesla stock by the Saudi fund and T Rowe Price:

Starlight Energies (@Starlight_Energ) 10/10/18, 9:44 PM

not noise:
8-7 Saudi 2.5%+ Tesla (T) and Elon tweet
8-23 Saudi Aramco $200B IPO delayed
9-30 Saudi $200B solar delayed
10-5 Riyadh Oct 23. Prince Saud: "Big investments, far from oil"
10-5 Saudi ~5% T
10-10 TRowePrice ~10% T
10-10 Elon GF-1 employ target now 20K was 10K curr 7K

Tesla aims to have 20,000 employees at Gigafactory 1, could invest in local housing, says Elon Musk

Edit: Saudi post:,2406.msg175851.html#msg175851

Policy and solutions / Re: Tesla glory/failure
« on: October 11, 2018, 03:20:44 PM »
that's my entire point and it includes my full respect for all the dedication and a bit of craziness it takes to get things up and running up to this point.

And that is my point, as well.  “Doing things the way they have always been done” usually meant taking around seven years to design a car and bring it to market.  Tesla not only re-designed an entirely different method of — cleaner — transportation, but brought it to market fast.  That requires throwing away old paradigms, and “thinking outside the box” every day.  Many of their wild ideas will go on to become big parts of the company’s success; others (I’m thinking of the Flufferbot ;) ) are a learning experience that will lead to new realizations and new directions. 

Everyone who says, “Why aren’t we moving faster to address climate change?” should super appreciate Tesla and Musk’s gutsy, risky approach to doing things differently.  The company made a huge bet in a game people told them they Could Not Win.  And they have succeeded.  Their plans for the future are as equally gutsy, although less risky now that they are turning profitable and have, you know, upended an entire industry and startled people to learn that an alternative to ICE cars exists and that actual customers swear by it. 

If Tesla hadn’t broken the mold, we would still be deep in the ICE age.  And no person is responsible for that more than Elon Musk.

Policy and solutions / Re: Cars, cars and more cars. And trucks, and....
« on: October 11, 2018, 02:58:03 PM »
China’s car market is struggling.

Reverse gear - China car dealers push for tax cut as auto growth stalls
BEIJING/SHANGHAI (Reuters) - China’s top auto dealers’ association has asked the government to halve taxes on car purchases to revive faltering sales, sources said, as worries grow the country’s auto market could shrink this year for the first time in decades.

Policy and solutions / Re: Tesla glory/failure
« on: October 11, 2018, 01:54:38 PM »
So it was a bad day on Wall Street today.

S&P 500 down 3.3 %.

If investors were jittery about Tesla, we would expect Tesla to take a big plunge.
But they did not.
Tesla went down only 2.25 %.

Investors mostly dumped companies like overpriced Amazon, which went down more than 6 % and even Apple went down 4.6 %.

This tells me investors are still more confident about Tesla than about the rest of the market, no matter the rhetoric from Tesla doom sayers.

that's jumping to false conclusions of course, tesla shares were on sale just a bit longer, hence the potential for further sales was smaller.

But the Tesla bears insist Tesla stock is headed for $0!  ;)  ;D

Policy and solutions / Re: Cars, cars and more cars. And trucks, and....
« on: October 11, 2018, 01:51:09 PM »
If you are not an EV owner, you may not appreciate the importance of this announcement.  We need to see many more announcements like this.

Chargepoint and EVBox launch partnership to offer roaming between electric car charging networks
... Between the two of them, they have over 100,000 charge points around the world.

Chargepoint is more popular in North America and EVBox in Europe, but they are both making strides in each other’s markets following recent expansion announcements.

The deal is made possible through the use of the Open Charge Point Interface (OCPI) protocol that they have both adopted.

Policy and solutions / Re: Cars, cars and more cars. And trucks, and....
« on: October 11, 2018, 01:47:22 PM »

You reflect my thoughts very closely, and you did it without invoking the word “Tesla.”  ;)

Policy and solutions / Re: Cars, cars and more cars. And trucks, and....
« on: October 11, 2018, 01:04:59 PM »
VW CEO uses scare tactic against stricter emission rules despite claiming to be all-in with electric vehicles
As we reported yesterday, the European Parliament has entered negotiations over the goal to reduce emissions from new cars by 30 to 40 percent by 2030.

The Parliament was originally pushing for 40%, but Germany and its influential auto industry pushed back for just 30% and the European Council came up with a 35% compromise.

VW, who claimed to be on board with the electric revolution, especially since being involved in the Dieselgate scandal, is now fighting back against the new proposal.

CEO Herbert Diess claimed the industry could crash and lose 100,000 jobs (via Süddeutsche Zeitung)
  “The transformation in speed and impact is difficult to manage.[…] Such an industry can crash faster than many believe,”

The new rule would force automakers to produce more electric vehicles in order to reduce their fleet average emission.

By 2025, VW hopes that its electric production plan will lead to 3 million electric vehicles per year between all their brands (VW, Audi, Porsche, etc.).

Europe pushing for 35% CO2 reduction from new cars to accelerate EV adoption, pushbacks from auto industry

Policy and solutions / Re: Tesla glory/failure
« on: October 11, 2018, 03:35:48 AM »
The war between Tesla and its enemies has reached a fever pitch lately because in the 2nd quarter 2018 earnings report and conference call, Tesla reaffirmed that enough cash will be generated through operations for the company to cover its financial obligations through internally generated funds alone, and no borrowing of funds is needed in the foreseeable future. Short sellers have been under the opinion that Tesla will run out of cash in March of 2019 when a large obligation comes due. Tesla’s 3rd quarter production and delivery report showed a beat in both metrics, strongly suggesting that Tesla is on track to generate hundreds of millions of dollars in positive cash flow in Q3 and, together with Q4, alleviate cash concerns for early 2019. Thus, the most astute shorts need to extricate themselves from their TSLA short positions prior to the early November Q3 earnings report, placing a short timeframe on maneuvering the value of Tesla’s stock further downward and covering their exits before that report is released. ...

A Field Guide To Potential Securities Violations By Tesla's Foes — In Depth | CleanTechnica

Policy and solutions / Re: Tesla glory/failure
« on: October 11, 2018, 03:20:51 AM »
Financial Times (@FinancialTimes) 10/10/18, 1:46 PM
Just in: James Murdoch has become the lead candidate to replace Elon Musk as Tesla's chairman

Elon Musk (@elonmusk) 10/10/18, 7:20 PM
@FinancialTimes This is incorrect

Policy and solutions / Re: Tesla glory/failure
« on: October 11, 2018, 03:13:20 AM »
T. Rowe Price Group (TROW) disclosed in a filing to the Securities and Exchange Commission that it bought 5.5 million more shares of Tesla (TSLA) in the third quarter, raising its holdings to 17.4 million shares, or a 10.2% stake in the electric-car maker.

At the end of the second quarter, it owned 11.9 million Tesla shares, a stake of 7.0%.
T. Rowe Price is now the second-largest Tesla shareholder, up from third place, ranking only behind CEO Elon Musk himself. Musk owns 33.7 million Tesla shares, a stake of 19.8%, according to S&P Capital IQ.
Bailey Gifford, which owns 13.2 million shares, a 7.7% stake, is now the third-largest holder.

Edit: replaced earlier statement with this Barron’s quote.

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