OK, here it is, the most complicated part of the book. I’ll try to explain this urban mathematics thing as clearly as I can, but I guess I’ll need to re-write it few times. This article would probably be tricky to follow but fortunately, there are pictures.
So, deep breath…
My goal here is to find the mathematical equivalent of (don’t panic) Nash equilibrium on a large scale with many players. Just as in the example of the ice cream vendors, I am looking for the easiest way to explain why businesses are clustered in the city, using the simplest possible algorithm.
Hmm, sounds reasonable so far. Are you with me? let’s go.
Is it possible that a technological solution to one specific transportation problem will result in another, different problem being created? How does Waze and other GPS tools contribute to traffic congestion and what does it say about the autonomous cars?
People tend to hear the word ‘Mathematics’ and run away… So here is a simple article that explains, without any scary formulas, the basic economic principle that leads to the creation of cities and suburbs. It starts with a little something called “The ice cream vendors” that illustrates how a free market leads to a familiar and problematic spatial situation.
We are in the midst of an urban revolution, nothing less. It’s challenging for us to observe it and define it as such, being only human. With our short lifespans and even shorter-term memories. The signs of a revolution are already here. Scarce, subtle and slow as they may be.
The city is primarily a product of transportation. It has always been one. The size of the city and the width of the streets, everything is constantly adapting to the way we move. Even the height of buildings in the city is related to transportation, and was limited to four floors before the invention of the safety elevator – The most popular public, electric, autonomous and free transport vehicle in the world.