Is your keyboard hooked into your computer by means of metal rods that go up and down when you press a key? Is your mouse integrated with your motherboard? Did Dell redesign your entire computer when browsers had to update for HTML 5?
Is your computer a mechanically integrated mess of interdependent components designed and built from the ground up by one company to never be upgraded or updated?
No? Why do you put up with a car like that?
At A Truly Electric Car Company (ATECC), we think the car should be a synthesis of separate components that talk to each other in the same electric language. If your brakes offend you, take them out and replace them with a kind of brakes you like. Since the new brakes speak the same language as the old brakes, they'll get along with the car's operating system, and you'll be back on the road.
We already have an industry capable of quality and precision engineering. What modular car making can give us is a car industry that draws on the benefits on which Silicon Valley has drawn -- an industry where independent systems can be developed by independent companies and then joined in new fusions of ideas.
A chassis can be built and customized by one company -- or five or eleven -- and batteries or motors can be developed by a different one. Breakthroughs in alternate energy use can be developed and deployed without everyone having to buy a new car. People can upgrade components as technology that better meets their needs is developed.
The companies themselves can benefit too. There can be a vibrant economic rain forest in place of a wasteland that sustains only a few too-big-to-fail giants.
On top of this, modular systems can be developed at a faster clip. Because they can be isolated they are easier to test and to analyze.
Computers don't have to be the only technology that evolves quickly or that benefits from the collaboration and competition of a myriad of contributors. We can have modern, modular architecture cars -- cars that are truly electric.
ABOUT THE ENTRANT
Type of entry:teamTeam members:Jessica Durney
Number of times previously entering contest:1
Edward is inspired by:We want to change cars and change carmaking. We take inspiration from the computer industry, which went from mainframes to smartphones in 50 years, and has thousands of companies competing in a vibrant industry. We want car technology to evolve as fast, and the car industry to be as exciting.