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In Düsseldorf, A Robot Valet Will Park Your Car

timothy posted about 6 months ago | from the stephen-king-is-taking-notes dept.

Robotics 120

stephendavion (2872091) writes In Germany, high tech has come to airport parking. Last week, Düsseldorf airport (DUS) introduced robot valets to take the hassle out of parking for travelers. Travelers can leave their cars at the arrival level of the ParkingPLUS structure. As they leave, they confirm on a touch-screen that no one is in the car. The robot valet, nicknamed "Ray," takes it from there. The robot measures the vehicle, picks it up with a forklift-like system, and takes it to the back area, where it will position it in one of the 249 parking spots reserved for automated valets. The machine is capable of carrying standard cars weighing up to 3.31 tons.

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i don't wanna hear how lazy americans are. (3, Funny)

NemoinSpace (1118137) | about 6 months ago | (#47387013)

Maybe we don't want to make our cars any more, but we have plenty of highly skilled valets.

Re: i don't wanna hear how lazy americans are. (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 months ago | (#47387029)

Because Americans are fat fucks who drive under 1 km to get to the store. You have too much practice driving short distances but soon you won't be able to fit in the car.

Re: i don't wanna hear how lazy americans are. (1)

Karmashock (2415832) | about 6 months ago | (#47387039)

statistically germans and english are about as fat... Some years, I think they've surpassed us.

really the whole "americans are fat" thing is mostly a product of misinformation at this point.

The conditions that lead to statistical weight gain are complex. Its about economics, social dynamics, work habits, and even political considerations.

And really, I don't see why any country should be ashamed of a statistic like this... does it lead to higher incidents of heart disease? Sure... and? People chose bacon over low cholesterol... get over it.

Re: i don't wanna hear how lazy americans are. (2)

arth1 (260657) | about 6 months ago | (#47387057)

really the whole "americans are fat" thing is mostly a product of misinformation at this point.

Um, no. The obesity here in the US is exceptional.

And really, I don't see why any country should be ashamed of a statistic like this... does it lead to higher incidents of heart disease? Sure... and? People chose bacon over low cholesterol... get over it.

Many supermarkets here supply their obese customers with scooter like shopping carts because they're to fat to walk.
Levi's sells jeans with a 58" waist.
We've become the laughing stock of the world.

Re: i don't wanna hear how lazy americans are. (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 months ago | (#47387127)

> We've become the laughing stock of the world.

Only to hipsters and eurofags. They bleat about tolerance and inclusion, except when it comes to people they disapprove of, and then suddenly they become snarky sarcastic little bitches with superiority complexes.

Re: i don't wanna hear how lazy americans are. (0, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 months ago | (#47387185)

There's a difference between tolerating fat people and tolerating the ideology which leads to such fatness.

I wouldn't mock any individual for being fat, but I sure as hell am going to mock America for being nothing but an undereducated, overweight bully - this century's Dying Empire.

To blame are your stupid culture of over-consumption rooted in an ideological capitalism rather than a pragmatic mixed economy, coupled with your anti-scientific denial that companies are able to propagandise unhealthy shit to you ("oh, the brain is a perfect rational ideal! only morons can be influenced!").

Re: i don't wanna hear how lazy americans are. (1)

peragrin (659227) | about 6 months ago | (#47387371)

in 15-20 years Europe will pass America for Fatness.

Europe's one main advantage is you can actually take public transportation and walk to get to places.

Even that is not going to be enough.

Re: i don't wanna hear how lazy americans are. (2)

CRCulver (715279) | about 6 months ago | (#47387389)

While Europe does have expanding waistlines and plenty of people get plump as they age, I cannot imagine an epidemic of morbid obesity like in the United States. Soft drinks and highly processed foods are more expensive here than in the United States, and in many countries there is sufficient momentum to get "fat taxes" passed on soft drinks and fast food.

And I don't think people would stand for it socially. I often go to the Deep South where I have family, and so many people are morbidly obese that no one bats an eye any more, and if you did confront people about their weight, they would say "Oh, uh, it must be a thyroid problem". In Europe, people tend to be more aware that thyroid problems are fairly uncommon and controllable by medication.

Re: i don't wanna hear how lazy americans are. (1)

drinkypoo (153816) | about 6 months ago | (#47387677)

And I don't think people would stand for it socially.

Yeah, that's no doubt what people thought here. I bet they thought that education would continue to be useful, too. Both things have the same root cause, government interference. They lied to us about what made you fat for decades, and they did it deliberately. At minimum, they did it to protect the processed foods industry. If you're really into conspiracy theories you might also consider that drugs to control cholesterol were just appearing on the market at that time.

Re: i don't wanna hear how lazy americans are. (1)

BasilBrush (643681) | about 6 months ago | (#47389053)

Why does the government get the blame for not preventing the processed food industry, rather than the processed food industry for making the unhealthy food?

You can't both believe in a hands off government, and then blame the government for not stopping businesses doing socially damaging things.

Re: i don't wanna hear how lazy americans are. (1)

drinkypoo (153816) | about 6 months ago | (#47389569)

Why does the government get the blame for not preventing the processed food industry,

Reading comprehension, you fail it. The government gets the blame for being the processed food industry's whore, and every other industry's as well — but that is outside the scope of this conversation.

You can't both believe in a hands off government,

I don't.

Re: i don't wanna hear how lazy americans are. (1)

BasilBrush (643681) | about 6 months ago | (#47389603)

I don't.

It must have been that comment moaning about government interference that had me fooled.

Re: i don't wanna hear how lazy americans are. (1)

drinkypoo (153816) | about 6 months ago | (#47390179)

It must have been that comment moaning about government interference that had me fooled.

Moaning? You wouldn't know moaning if it were up your ass kicking field goals. I was complaining about the specific nature of this government activity, not issuing a sermon against the concept of government. You should see a doctor about that knee. I think they can offer you some sort of treatment to help you stop jerking it.

Re: i don't wanna hear how lazy americans are. (1)

module0000 (882745) | about 6 months ago | (#47388215)

I wish I had mod points - you are absolutely correct.

I often go to the Deep South where I have family, and so many people are morbidly obese that no one bats an eye any more, and if you did confront people about their weight, they would say "Oh, uh, it must be a thyroid problem".

No one wants to take responsibility for the consequences of their actions, and obesity is one of those consequences.

Re: i don't wanna hear how lazy americans are. (1)

BasilBrush (643681) | about 6 months ago | (#47389057)

I don't believe the people of America have any less self-control than people in any other country. The problems therefore are cultural and systematic, not personal.

Re: i don't wanna hear how lazy americans are. (2)

Plumpaquatsch (2701653) | about 6 months ago | (#47387955)

in 15-20 years Europe will pass America for Fatness.

Because most fat Americans will have exploded by then.

Re: i don't wanna hear how lazy americans are. (1)

BasilBrush (643681) | about 6 months ago | (#47389031)

It's reasonable to assume that obesity in the rest of the world will continue to increase. But what makes you think the USA is going to slow down, stop or reverse enough for others to pass them?

Europe's one main advantage is you can actually take public transportation and walk to get to places.

Don't forget the advantages of traditions of healthier cuisine, and better regulation of food manufacturers.

Re: i don't wanna hear how lazy americans are. (1)

arth1 (260657) | about 6 months ago | (#47389347)

Don't forget the advantages of traditions of healthier cuisine, and better regulation of food manufacturers.

And socialized healthcare. There's no reason to not go see a doctor, who will tell you how serious your obesity has, and get you help if you need it. That European doctors usually see the patients nude, probably also makes them more aware of who needs a pep talk before it becomes a real problem.

Re: i don't wanna hear how lazy americans are. (1)

BasilBrush (643681) | about 6 months ago | (#47389587)

I was with you up until:
"That European doctors usually see the patients nude"

I'm reminded of Joey's belief n Friends that tailors are supposed to measure your inside leg like that!

In 50 years of European halthcare the only time a doctor has seen me nude is when I was born.

Re: i don't wanna hear how lazy americans are. (1)

arth1 (260657) | about 5 months ago | (#47391039)

Are you by any chance British?
In both Scandinavia and Germany, I've always been expected to strip down, at least to my undies, but bare when needed.

Here in the US, you generally have to put on a gown, so the lascivious doctors can't get a peek at your innocent and pure body. (In reality, so you can't sue them for doing so. And possibly so they can charge extra for the single-use gowns.)
In tent sized gowns, there's no way the doctor can spot whether you're getting fatter and losing muscle mass, or have skin cancer for that matter.
They will even smuggle the stethoscope under the gown so you won't have to take it off and expose unholy flesh.

Re: i don't wanna hear how lazy americans are. (4, Informative)

arth1 (260657) | about 6 months ago | (#47387107)

statistically germans and english are about as fat... Some years, I think they've surpassed us.

I actually looked this up. For every year there are figures, the US obesity rate has been more than twice as high as Germany.
As for the UK, they're up there too, but has never had a higher rate than the US.

Many of the pacific countries have an even higher percentage of obesity, but among OECD countries, the US ranks top.

Re: i don't wanna hear how lazy americans are. (1)

javelinco (652113) | about 6 months ago | (#47388705)

Would you mind sharing where you looked this up? I'm not able to find an easy resource for this kind of information.

Re: i don't wanna hear how lazy americans are. (1)

arth1 (260657) | about 5 months ago | (#47391119)

I think I did an image search for "obesity country year", and then went into the web sites of the more interesting charts to find the sources.

Regular Google searches have become less useful these days, as advertisers and "famous sites" appear to be bumped towards the top even for the regular results. So I more often start with an image search to narrow it down to places that have information, not something to sell. Unfortunately, I think it's only a matter of time before Google catches on to this, and skews image search results too. But for now, image searches tend to be more honest, especially when you want statistical results.

Re: i don't wanna hear how lazy americans are. (5, Informative)

Paradise Pete (33184) | about 6 months ago | (#47387245)

People chose bacon over low cholesterol... get over it.

A big part of the problem why Americans (and others) are fatter and fatter are because of misbeliefs foisted upon them.
Fatty foods don't cause heart disease. Sugar, stress, and smoking do. A high cholesterol count does not cause heart disease. It is a *symptom*, not a cause. It is your body attempting to repair the damage.
Avoiding fats is a very good way to fatten yourself up. You'll instead be ingesting sugar and other carbohydrates, and you'll quickly feel hungry again. The sugar in your bloodstream requires the release of insulin to process it. The insulin tells the fat cells to open up and start sucking up all that sugar. When there an over-abundance the walls of your arteries get inflamed in the process, causing your body to *produce* cholesterol to attempt to heal the damage. Then you've got leftover insulin in the blood, and so you feel hungry again so you can put it to use.
Stop accepting what you've been told all your life. Stop eating sugar and stop avoiding fats. It's good for your brain and your heart, and you won't eat as much because you'll feel full for much longer.

Re: i don't wanna hear how lazy americans are. (1)

gnasher719 (869701) | about 6 months ago | (#47387503)

A big part of the problem why Americans (and others) are fatter and fatter are because of misbeliefs foisted upon them.

Can't be voted up more enough. Let's say you buy some healthy low-fat yoghurt. And then you check and it's stuffed full with sugar! And it has a HUGE "low fat" printed on it, when it has more calories and is less healthy for you then the unmodified normal fat yoghurt. The problem is that your body _wants_ fat because that's what it has been designed to want for the last 100,000 years, and as long as it doesn't get the fat it wants it just wants more food!

Re: i don't wanna hear how lazy americans are. (1)

BasilBrush (643681) | about 6 months ago | (#47389081)

This is why processed food ingredients need to be regulated. Individuals cannot be expected to all check every product for each food type - even more so if it's not properly labelled. Free enterprise has been allowed to pull dirty tricks such as the one you describe for too long.

Re: i don't wanna hear how lazy americans are. (1)

rvw (755107) | about 6 months ago | (#47388529)

People chose bacon over low cholesterol... get over it.

A big part of the problem why Americans (and others) are fatter and fatter are because of misbeliefs foisted upon them.

Fatty foods don't cause heart disease. Sugar, stress, and smoking do. A high cholesterol count does not cause heart disease. It is a *symptom*, not a cause. It is your body attempting to repair the damage.
  Avoiding fats is a very good way to fatten yourself up. You'll instead be ingesting sugar and other carbohydrates, and you'll quickly feel hungry again. The sugar in your bloodstream requires the release of insulin to process it. The insulin tells the fat cells to open up and start sucking up all that sugar.

Reading tip: Why zebras don't get ulcers [amazon.com] . It explains really good how all this works, and what bad food and stress does to your body.

You forget about two things though! First is alcohol - although in a sense that can be counted as sugar as well. But not really! It should be mentioned along with the others: Alcohol! Second is cancer! Too much food, smoking and alcohol cause cancer. Stress does not cause cancer, but it has a very big negative impact on it once you get it.

Re: i don't wanna hear how lazy americans are. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 months ago | (#47387447)

Statistics aside but (beyond hollywood distortion field) 'Muricans look awful.

Re: i don't wanna hear how lazy americans are. (2)

Karmashock (2415832) | about 6 months ago | (#47387489)

How would you know?

Seriously... the whole thing exists almost entirely in the media and no where else.

Can you find land whales if you look for them? Sure... so what? That proves nothing.

This is as bogus as the "Americans don't know history/geography" line which is only true in that they don't know EUROPEAN history or geography as well as europeans. But by the same token, europeans don't know american history or american geography.

I've quizzed them on it repeatedly and they know nothing beyond what you'd get out of a few movies. Which is less then worthless.

Yet these same people will turn around and turn their noses up at americans because they don't know about some battle or war or general in 1204 or 1672 in France, Germany, Italy, England, whatever.

But ask the same people to answer something basic like what was the Bacon rebellion and they have no idea. Ask them name which original colonies were Dutch versus English... I could go on but the point is that they don't know American history.

Which is fine. I don't expect them to be as knowledgeable of our history. By the same token, its unreasonable for them to assume anyone really gives a shit about European history unless you're a European.

The japanese don't care. Ask them what the war of the Roses was and very few of them will have any clue.

I don't hear the euros bashing the Japanese for their poor grasp of history. But by the same token if the same Japanese person were to ask either an American or a European to answer some question about Meiji dynasty we'd be generally clueless.

So on and so forth.

The whole thing is bullshit. Some people need to feel superior so they'll come up with stupid reasons to feel that way and without any real evidence they'll maintain that position because its important to their fragile little egos.

The whole thing is contemptible because it reveals that people aren't thinking for themselves. It would be fine if one person came up with this notion and maintained it... he'd just be an asshole. But what we have is worse. We have lots of people believing this same asshole for no reason and repeating what he said to all their friends and just repeating it over and over again like it becomes true if you say it a thousand times.

Think for yourselves please... or its really quite justified to regard you all as mindless groupthink halfwits.

Re: i don't wanna hear how lazy americans are. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 months ago | (#47387513)

I get a feeling you won't care for my anecdote, but I've spent considerable time travelling all over both sides of the Atlantic and have definitely noticed many, many more fatties in the US (east coast, west coast, southern US, midwest) than in Europe (UK, Benelux, France, Italy, Germany, Poland).

Re: i don't wanna hear how lazy americans are. (1)

Karmashock (2415832) | about 6 months ago | (#47387787)

Would you accept my anecdote that found the two to be generally equivilent if you exempted statistical abnormalities?

There are portions of the US that do have a lot of fat people. However, not all portions of the US have lots of fat people. Go to Los Angeles for example where I live and you don't see much of it. Go to most rural communities and you also tend not to see it. Most of the fat asses exist in the mid west... and there are some further demographic break downs from there that shed further light on what is actually going on.

But what I discuss here is proper statistical analysis... something which is utterly alien to most people despite their willingness to cite statistics they don't understand and are incurious to evaluate.

As to the various differences between the populations, it would be more useful to examine differences in diet, differences in recreation, etc. From that you might glean more useful information.

If your only interset as with most is to justify a pajorative then by all means... point and say "fatty" and then giggle moronically.

This is almost entirely the point of this sort of discussion and I see no reason why any should respect the practice. However, if you want to salvage something of value from the discussion, you can look at the data and try to understand it.

Americans are not of a radically dissimilar genetic stock from the european countries. As such, the resulting differences are environmental. Examining those differences will yield the causes of any differences in weight or muscle mass... etc.

Re: i don't wanna hear how lazy americans are. (1)

BasilBrush (643681) | about 6 months ago | (#47389173)

You're presenting the mid west as if it's the abnormal outlier. In reality Los Angeles is the outlier. Due to the influence of the movie industry, the body beautiful is more of an obsession there than most other places in the world. Whether it's achieved by genuine healthy living or fad diets, gym obsession, drugs or plastic surgery.

This is why anecdotes and gut-feel count for nothing next to data. You;'e overly biased towards thinking that your experiences are typical.

Re: i don't wanna hear how lazy americans are. (1)

Karmashock (2415832) | about 5 months ago | (#47391313)

the movie industry is a tiny portion of our population.

There are tens of millions of us here... how many of us do you think are involved with the movie business? Less then 100,000... much less...

As to anecdotes... that's all you've got in any case. You point at some land whale getting carted around in a midwestern wall mart and presume to label us all land whales.

Its moronic.

Re: i don't wanna hear how lazy americans are. (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 months ago | (#47387587)

As an American, you sound like a butt hurt American. Accept the fact that we are the most obese 1st world country and move on.

Re: i don't wanna hear how lazy americans are. (1)

Karmashock (2415832) | about 6 months ago | (#47387753)

As an American, you sound like a stupid American. It is precisely this incurious attitude. This willingness to swallow anything without consideration so long as it appears popular that is so reprehensible.

Either have a mind of your own or surrender any claim to one and with that any right to an opinion what so ever.

Re: i don't wanna hear how lazy americans are. (1)

BasilBrush (643681) | about 6 months ago | (#47389133)

The about History is that America doesn't have much of it. They typically think a 100 year old building is notably historic.

History didn't start in 1492. (or any of the earlier dates at which the current Americans can be deemed to have started.

In Europe when we talk about history, we're looking at at least a couple of millennia. And your race shared in much of it.

I mean, I'm guessing by your examples that you know as little about aboriginal American history as you do about European.

Re: i don't wanna hear how lazy americans are. (1)

Karmashock (2415832) | about 5 months ago | (#47391351)

American history didn't start in the 1940s, fool. US history goes back to 1776, European American history goes back to 1492, and Native American history goes back tens of thousands of years.

All your pathetic argument is trying to do now is say that european history is more important. And therefore someone ignorant of American history is not ignorant while someone ignorant of European history is ignorant. This is merely euro centrism.

This ignores the point I made about the Japanese that are themselves not terribly familiar with either American or European history but instead Japanese and east asian history. What is more, neither Americans nor Europeans are terribly aware of Japanese or east asian history.

Your inability to grasp this pattern while instead clinging to a hopelessly stupid and derivative argument speaks poorly for your intelligence. Grasp, I am not saying it speaks poorly of your knowledge, but your actual intelligence since if you were at all clever you should have connected the dots and formed a more reasonable argument.

That one such as you would presume to judge another's intellect or knowledge is frankly laughable.

Did you know you were an ignorant rube without so much as the bare knowledge of how to form a thought?

You're doubtless lacking in introspection as well as knowledge and so are unable to self examine your many obvious flaws. I won't waste my time trying to educate you. You were doubtlessly thoroughly mis-educated to such an extent that there is nothing I can do for you.

Re: i don't wanna hear how lazy americans are. (1)

Greyfox (87712) | about 6 months ago | (#47387799)

Re: i don't wanna hear how lazy americans are. (1)

Karmashock (2415832) | about 6 months ago | (#47387945)

Exactly... zero analysis... just a citation of numbers without context.

For example, did you know that the US defines infant mortality differently then any country in europe?

This leads to infant mortality not meaning the same thing.

Allow me to open your eyes to the complexity of the situation:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/I... [wikipedia.org]

That's just one of the stats and frankly that's not even the full depth of the issue.

There is a tendency for people to cite the numbers to make a point without understanding how the numbers were collected, what they mean, if there are standards across borders, if the reporting rate/system is the same, etc.

Failing to do that means your comparison is invalid. Almost NONE of the studies that make these comparisions especially the incipid newspaper articles go to the trouble to either understand the statistics or correct for these differences.

They just take the raw data, run some basic calculations and then render some ignorant conclusion.

I don't blame you for making this mistake. You've been mislead into thinking the data was treated properly and corrected to allow for these sorts of cross references.

You are however mistaken. The data is at best raw and must be heavily filtered to allow for direct cross referencing.

Here is another example:
http://articles.latimes.com/20... [latimes.com]

That is an LA times article that discusses the practice in Japan of labeling all unsolved deaths as natural causes or accidents or something other then a murder.

So for example, if I poison someone randomly in Japan... they probably won't do an autopsy... they'll just declare it natural causes. No investigation.

Now, that naturally has an impact on your crime statistics and it makes it impossible to compare foreign crime stats where countries do not do that with countries that do. How for example do you possibly figure out how many homicides were labeled natural causes? There are naturally no records that would let you determine that because the whole point is to make the numbers look good.

I think you should be familiar with this practice. We see this in many countries including the US where a given politician wants to show they're competent. So they tell the people under them... "deliver these numbers or else"... and they deliver the numbers... mostly by just writing whatever the fool wants into the database and covering up anything that says otherwise.

Look at what happened with the VA recently. They were told to improve wait times for veterans. And if they did, they'd get a bonus.

So they faked reports and made it look like they were hitting their numbers when really they weren't. They literally were deleting vets from wait lists, keeping secret wait lists, and doing all sorts of other crap to make the numbers look good.

Which means those stats are also utterly without worth.

This is a consistent problem with many statistics and its only ONE type of problem.

If you're at all open minded on the issue you'll be a good deal more humble about citing such statistics when you have no personal knowledge of how they're collected, what they mean, etc.

Re: i don't wanna hear how lazy americans are. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 months ago | (#47388353)

Exactly... zero analysis... just a citation of numbers without context.

For example, did you know that the US defines infant mortality differently then any country in europe?

This leads to infant mortality not meaning the same thing.

Allow me to open your eyes to the complexity of the situation:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/I... [wikipedia.org]

That's just one of the stats and frankly that's not even the full depth of the issue.

From the same Wikipedia article:

"However, the differences in reporting are unlikely to be the primary explanation for the United States' relatively low international ranking. Rather, the report concluded that primary reason for the United States’ higher infant mortality rate when compared with Europe was the United States’ much higher percentage of preterm births. There are a number of factors which may account for this higher rate of preterm births, which include obesity or poor prenatal care."

Re: i don't wanna hear how lazy americans are. (1)

Karmashock (2415832) | about 5 months ago | (#47391379)

Actually the US has just about the best prenatal care in the world. Its a product amongst other things of the right to life people that strive against abortions etc... and as a result we have the best technology and medical care for threatened infants.

As to the assumptions on the statistics... those are without basis and are merely someone's guess.

You are ignoring the core point which is that the statistics are not directly comparable.

Failing to grasp that is intellectual dishonesty at best.

Re: i don't wanna hear how lazy americans are. (1)

BasilBrush (643681) | about 6 months ago | (#47389145)

And what you propose instead of data is your gut feel. And that's because you find your beliefs on the wrong side of the evidence so often.

Re: i don't wanna hear how lazy americans are. (1)

Karmashock (2415832) | about 5 months ago | (#47391507)

You don't have evidence. You're just too ignorant to know what is and is not evidence. You don't know how to structure data to use it properly. You don't know how to read statistics. You don't know how to use statistics.

You have no basis to presume what is and is not evidence.

Re: i don't wanna hear how lazy americans are. (1)

BasilBrush (643681) | about 6 months ago | (#47389017)

UK: "reaching levels of 22-24% in 2008/9."
USA: "As of 2007, 33% of men and 36% of women are obese."
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/E... [wikipedia.org]

That's a fair difference. And that's comparing against what's probably the worst case in Europe. So no the whole "americans are fat" thing is not misinformation.

Worse, American cultural exports such as TV dinners, Big Macs and deep pan pizzas have had significant effect on the rising obesity around the world.

Re: i don't wanna hear how lazy americans are. (1)

Karmashock (2415832) | about 5 months ago | (#47391493)

Right, because the English and Germans don't have TV dinners or unhealthy foods.

Everyone knows the English are long time vegitarians that eat only whole grain free range whatever.

Are you real? Traditional English food is what? Traditional german food is what?

Now after citing that, tell me how that's oh so much more healthy then anything else.

Your bigotry is frankly hilarious. To blame the increase in weight gain throughout the developed world on the United States? In what possible way could you blame such a thing on us?

The only thing I can come up with is improving global stability, economic conditions, abundance of food, etc... which leads to people being ABLE to be fat and therefore more people becoming fat either by choice or carelessness.

Your bigotry likely is exploding at this point at the suggesting that the US did anything good ever. Which is to be expected. But can you blame the US for making the world fat in a way that does not praise us for making food abundant?

I'm curious how many knots your bigotry can twist your own logic.

New use for Amazon's warehouse bots (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 5 months ago | (#47392113)

Not that long ago Amazon bought a bot company which produces warehouse bots, bots that can store and retrieve and keep tag items on / off the shelves

Methinks Amazon may have a new line of business --- all it needs is to give its bots a pair of fork lift like "steel forks" and shelves that are big and study enough to store a complete vehicle in and walla, Parking Bots !!

Re:New use for Amazon's warehouse bots (1)

Karmashock (2415832) | about 5 months ago | (#47392611)

Amazon isn't sharing from what I can see... that system should be standard in warehouses by now.

What could possibly go wrong (1, Insightful)

arth1 (260657) | about 6 months ago | (#47387043)

Forklift?
Unless the forklift goes under the wheels, I see this go terribly wrong for many cars. They're not designed to be lifted by forklift.

Re:What could possibly go wrong (3, Informative)

AK Marc (707885) | about 6 months ago | (#47387053)

No, they are designed to be lifted by lift. Lifts use designed jackpoints. A forklift could be set to mimic this action. That's well within the design parameters of the cars.

Re:What could possibly go wrong (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 months ago | (#47387113)

> A forklift could be set to mimic this action. That's well within the design parameters of the cars

Not for most modern cars. Most cars specify "lifting points". The key here is they are "points". It requires strict placement of the lifts to prevent damage, not something as crude as having forklift blades slide under the chassis.

Re:What could possibly go wrong (5, Informative)

Travis Mansbridge (830557) | about 6 months ago | (#47387139)

Actually, from this [youtube.com] part of the video, it looks like two slats converge under the front and rear wheels. This would also be suitable for lifting three-wheeled cars (mentioned in a comment below).

Re:What could possibly go wrong (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 months ago | (#47387195)

You are a moron and a cunt.

Re:What could possibly go wrong (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 months ago | (#47387065)

The forklift blades goes under the wheels indeed. Well, kind of, its basically 2 blades per wheel (one being just the exterior of the robot) and then they push up a bit from there I think.

Re:What could possibly go wrong (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 months ago | (#47387073)

From all appearances, it seems to do just that (go under the wheels). I wonder how it would work with 3 wheeled cars, though?

Re:What could possibly go wrong (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 months ago | (#47387095)

You can park your own 3 wheeled car, hipster fag.

Re:What could possibly go wrong (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 months ago | (#47387111)

How many people have 3 wheeled cars?

Sure they exist, but I would hazard that less than one in one thousand cars are of the 3 wheeled variety.

-puddingpimp

Re:What could possibly go wrong (1)

arth1 (260657) | about 6 months ago | (#47387119)

From all appearances, it seems to do just that (go under the wheels). I wonder how it would work with 3 wheeled cars, though?

Or six-wheeled cars, like the Covini sports car, or a six-wheel Land Rover?

Re:What could possibly go wrong (4, Insightful)

itzly (3699663) | about 6 months ago | (#47387241)

I love how the first reaction is to come up with a disadvantage that affects 0.01% of the population. Simple solution: cars that don't have 4 wheels can't be parked by the robot and they'll send you to the regular lot.

Re:What could possibly go wrong (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 months ago | (#47387455)

we are on /. after all - a place where unusually high density of minutiae obsessed nerds with (too much of free time on their hands) congregate.

Re:What could possibly go wrong (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 months ago | (#47388201)

Do you not understand that this is, by definition, what a good coder does? Look for the edge cases? Happy path is for fresh outs. Edge cases are what make or break a solution.

Re:What could possibly go wrong (2)

RCSInfo (847666) | about 6 months ago | (#47387143)

At the bottom of the article is a linked video [vimeo.com] to the robot manufacturer. The robots do indeed lift the cars by the wheels. This video is much more interesting than the animated one from the article.

It does (video) (4, Informative)

saibot834 (1061528) | about 6 months ago | (#47387171)

Here's a video [youtube.com] of the actual thing, not just an animation.

but do they have robotic hookers? (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 months ago | (#47387061)

Forget parking cars, do they gots those robotic hookers I can park my dick in?

Re:but do they have robotic hookers? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 months ago | (#47387243)

Yes, but unfortunately it's the same robot.

Re:but do they have robotic hookers? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 months ago | (#47387997)

Hey there sailor-unit

Fuck hookers, I want a suicide booth!

Yawn... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 months ago | (#47387129)

The Japanese have had automated parking systems for years. The novel features of this one are that it works in a standard concrete car park and is tied to the flight system so that it retrieves your car at the right time.

Automated systems make sense in Tokyo because of the high cost or real estate, but in European airports they are competing with cheap off-airport parking and regular car parks a few hundred meters from the terminal. So I doubt many flyers will be willing to pay the premium price for this service.

Re:Yawn... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 months ago | (#47387545)

We have a few of such installations in Copenhagen as well. Not at the airport, but in the city. On the street it looks like a single car garage, you drive the car in, walk out of it, and then the lift takes the car underground. When you return, the lift brings your car back in the garage and you drive away. The one closest to my work has four lifts, and has room for 400 cars. All you see on the ground level is a playground for children, and these four lift garages.

Should be denser! (1)

Dr. Spork (142693) | about 6 months ago | (#47387149)

From the picture it looks like it takes just as much space as a regular parking garage, but I think the real potential in a system like this is in maximizing the density of parked cars. I'm picturing something like an Amazon warehouse, but with cars on each shelf. In places where space is at a premium, this sort of ultra-dense shelving system seems like the right way to store a lot of cars. What would also be awesome would be a smartphone app that gives the garage a heads up 5 minutes before you arrive to pick up your car, so that "Ray" can stick it into a pickup spot. For example, if it's in a city and on a subway line, you could choose "I'm on the northbound C train" and the dispatching system is wired into the subway system, figures out where that train is and can estimate accurately how long it will be before you arrive. Then you get a return message about which spot to go to, get in and drive off. Yes it's a bit more technology than self-parking, but the technology is mostly fixed costs, and in many dense cities, those costs are probably much lower than the equivalent number of traditional parking spaces. Also, these costs are likely to fall over time, unlike the cost of space in Gangnam or Manhattan. If it's coordinated right, it's also more convenient.

Re:Should be denser! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 months ago | (#47387273)

Of course, there will be the problems of a robotic parking garage. What happens if it breaks down? Every single person who has a car in that garage is utterly and completely hosed, and there may not be any way to retrieve cars out of the garage if the central lift completely breaks down.

The ideal would be autonomous cars combined with this lift system. That way, the car can confirm that nobody left a dog or child in the vehicle, the vehicle could drive itself into one of the loading bays, align itself properly, and have constant communication with the central loader. For electric cars, this may even mean the ability to get hooked up to a charger while the vehicle is on the shelf. Then, when the vehicle is recalled, it can be driven to a loading zone and be ready for the owner, no waiting for a loading zone space to open up.

Re:Should be denser! (2)

FatLittleMonkey (1341387) | about 6 months ago | (#47387281)

From the picture it looks like it takes just as much space as a regular parking garage, but I think the real potential in a system like this is in maximizing the density of parked cars.

If you skip the retarded sites like "Mashable" in TFS, you'll find that it actually does increase the density of parking.

(Even Jalopnik [jalopnik.com] has better information.)

I'm picturing something like an Amazon warehouse, but with cars on each shelf.

Those kinds [franky242.net] of shelf parking systems [blogspot.com] already exist, however, they require building an entirely new parking structure [realitypod.com] . The robot "valets" work with existing structures, which means a parking operator can upgrade just for the price of a few robots plus the check-in station, rather than having to tear down and rebuild from scratch. The operator can also introduce the robots gradually, say dedicating one floor to robot parking and charging a premium for "valet" service, increasing the number of robots as revenue allows.

Re:Should be denser! (1)

blackest_k (761565) | about 6 months ago | (#47387355)

I was looking for the robot carpark I used in central london about 15 years ago.
I did find this video from 1960 http://www.youtube.com/watch?v... [youtube.com]

Re:Should be denser! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 months ago | (#47387613)

What would also be awesome would be a smartphone app that gives the garage a heads up 5 minutes before you arrive to pick up your car, so that "Ray" can stick it into a pickup spot. For example, if it's in a city and on a subway line, you could choose "I'm on the northbound C train" and the dispatching system is wired into the subway system, figures out where that train is and can estimate accurately how long it will be before you arrive. Then you get a return message about which spot to go to, get in and drive off.

If you read the article, that is actually what this system does. It has a smartphone app and is tied in to the flight schedule system, so it automatically retrieves the car for you in time, but you can also "override" the schedule via the smartphone app.

Re:Should be denser! (1)

drinkypoo (153816) | about 6 months ago | (#47387749)

If you read the article,

h0h0h0

I know we all like to look smart and clever, but I'm starting to think we should just let those comments go unanswered. You're just encouraging ignorance like the above when you coddle it. Instead, stop encouraging the willfully ignorant, let them go find their home at Fox News where they belong.

Re:Should be denser! (1)

swb (14022) | about 6 months ago | (#47388049)

Boats have been stored this way for a long time. Huge warehouse spaces with racks.

Re:Should be denser! (1)

Plumpaquatsch (2701653) | about 6 months ago | (#47388691)

From the picture it looks like it takes just as much space as a regular parking garage,

That's pretty much the point: the system is intended to be added to existing regular parking garages, to add comfort to the drivers as well as increase number of parked cars.

The problem with parking garages today is that they were all designed when cars were 8 inches narrower.

When the future has finally arrived: (0)

Tablizer (95088) | about 6 months ago | (#47387153)

Robot, fetch me a beer, suck my dick, and do the dishes.

Re:When the future has finally arrived: (1)

drinkypoo (153816) | about 6 months ago | (#47387785)

By the time I trust a robot to suck my dick, it'll probably have a direct neural interface. I just keep thinking about the feeding robot arm mashing the head model in the face. I don't want anything pounding my balls like that.

This is not news (2)

podz (887481) | about 6 months ago | (#47387173)

They had the same system in downtown Frankfurt already 15 years ago. I know because I used it.

Re:This is not news (1)

GrahamCox (741991) | about 6 months ago | (#47387175)

It is news, because it's in Düsseldorf! Frankfurt is so last century.

Re:This is not news (2)

GrahamCox (741991) | about 6 months ago | (#47387179)

Also in the news, we have Unicode! Slashdot, have you heard of it?

Re:This is not news (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 months ago | (#47387191)

No.

Re:This is not news (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 months ago | (#47387531)

Natürlich.

Re:This is not news (1)

zAPPzAPP (1207370) | about 6 months ago | (#47387593)

Witch!

Re:This is not news (1)

drinkypoo (153816) | about 6 months ago | (#47387669)

Unicode, so funktionen ert?

They beat Google to it (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 months ago | (#47387271)

Wow, those Germans beat Google to it. According to popular media, Google invented autonomous parking, the autonomous car in general, the internet, the computer and the wheel. Today must be a sad day at Google.

This is not novel (2)

wickerprints (1094741) | about 6 months ago | (#47387293)

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/A... [wikipedia.org]

The basic idea has been around for a while now, in a number of countries besides Germany. And it has less to do with laziness or luxury, and more to do with maximizing the use of valuable space in areas of high urban density. The only thing that appears to be novel here is the use of a free-moving robot rather than a conveyance that is incorporated into the parking structure itself. Granted, there are other benefits as well--being able to retrieve your car rapidly and efficiently reduces parking structure congestion and environmental pollution from excessive idling.

Re:This is not novel (1)

Ultracrepidarian (576183) | about 6 months ago | (#47387351)

Exactly right. I parked my Corvair in one of these in New York City in 1967.

Re:This is not novel (0)

Justpin (2974855) | about 6 months ago | (#47387707)

Then this project fails completely, because look how the robot is configured is is as big as a car itself and it needs to go to the side and slide underneath. Therefore to use the robot you need 2 spaces for one car. Unless it can get in from infront or behind. Or the robot positions them on a pop/push basis whereby the car which is going to leave last gets put right at the end, even so the car will need to be regularly shuffled as its leave date approaches. So tbh tiny parking bays and small transit lanes between them is more effective, Bury council car park is this, the bays are tiny and you can't drive into them you need to go back and forth about 4-6 times to get the angle right. It generates maximum revenue for the council for the least amount of space and significant revenue for the paint workshop judging by the pillars being scarred with car paint.

Re:This is not novel (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 months ago | (#47390443)

Go ahead, get density like this:
http://i.kinja-img.com/gawker-... [kinja-img.com] .
With

tiny parking bays and small transit lanes between them

Is *everything* a "robot" now? (1)

cascadingstylesheet (140919) | about 6 months ago | (#47387597)

It's a neat application, but I'm not sure that it's what most of us would think of as a "robot".

Re:Is *everything* a "robot" now? (1)

drinkypoo (153816) | about 6 months ago | (#47387769)

It's a neat application, but I'm not sure that it's what most of us would think of as a "robot".

Then most of you are idiots, and you should go hang out on the gawker network or similar instead of infesting Slashdot. This is clearly a robot. Maybe it's not a sexy humanoid robot that will suck you off every morning, but it's clearly a robot.

It's also clearly a product with limited utility, because how long is it going to be before cars are all self-driving? The cars will park themselves in the same sort of garages we have now, but they'll surrender to garage control upon arrival. You'll park in the valet zone and hopefully have to acknowledge the control request, and then you'll get out and your car will handle the problem itself.

Robot car parks which are robotic buildings make sense because they can sharply reduce not just the space that the system consumes, but also the time that it takes to park a car. If you watch the video, this system is much, much slower than having self-parking cars, and it saves very little space. But there's no room in a typical parking garage for pick-and-place, so this is the best you can do.

tl;dr: Obviously a robot, obviously not that great, will be obsoleted soon by self-driving cars.

Re:Is *everything* a "robot" now? (1)

itzly (3699663) | about 6 months ago | (#47387801)

On the other hand, this robot valet is cheap and simple to install, so it can be a good choice for upgrading an existing parking garage.

Re:Is *everything* a "robot" now? (1)

drinkypoo (153816) | about 6 months ago | (#47387805)

But there's no room in a typical parking garage for pick-and-place, so this is the best you can do.

On the other hand, this robot valet is cheap and simple to install, so it can be a good choice for upgrading an existing parking garage.

That's the same hand. HTH, KTHXBYE, HAND

Problematic (1)

Justpin (2974855) | about 6 months ago | (#47387687)

Is it me or does anybody see a problem with this? in that unless you can fork lift the car from in front or behind you need to leave a large amount of space between each car to get the robot in. Which reduces your carpark capacity. Councils in the UK make new carparks with tiny spaces where you have to literally climb out this is done to maximise revenue.

Re:Problematic (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 months ago | (#47387755)

You enter the details of your return flight. The arrangement of cars is shuffled every night to allow fast retrieval when you get back.

Re:Problematic (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 6 months ago | (#47389739)

Hint 1: Why put cars at right angles to the access lane when you have a robot that can drive sideways?
Hint 2: How wide a lane do you need when you don't have to turn a car in it?
Hint 3: Do you need to have every car directly accessible when you have a robot that can shuffle cars between stacks?

Another Trade Eliminated (1)

Jim Sadler (3430529) | about 6 months ago | (#47388527)

No more humans working as parking valets! The trend continues. Make note that agencies do not consider the availability of a trade just the fact that if the job were available the person is able to do it. Therefore you are not disabled even if every trade you can work in is eliminated by technology. You might be blind and confined to a wheelchair but by god you can still weave one heck of a buggy whip and therefore can not be classified as disabled even when no buggy whip factory exists. And being that you are not disabled that nasty court order compelling you to pay child support puts you into a perpetual legal death with plenty of cell time. After all you could be making those buggy whips to feed your kids!

in EU don't need to be disabled to get medicare (1)

Joe_Dragon (2206452) | about 6 months ago | (#47388903)

Over there there is an medicare like system for all.

Offtopic Shitposting (1)

ButchDeLoria (2772751) | about 6 months ago | (#47388857)

I vas born in Dusseldorf, and zat is vhy zey call me Rolf.

long term parking / offsite much cheaper then $40 (1)

Joe_Dragon (2206452) | about 6 months ago | (#47388885)

long term parking / offsite much cheaper is alot less then $40 a day to park.

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