interesting article. Humans are humans and most people have some "things" that they are passionate about. In the middle ages, it was your carriage or your thoroughbred horse if you were lucky enough to have food to eat and a roof over your head. Guys, in general, have shown to relate better to things than people. (whole can of worms I would like to side-step). For many of us, cars are appealing for the visual or visceral thrill. The artistry of the design AND the engineering/performance. It is easy to see that is NOT the case for most people.
We do spend an inordinate amount of money on basic transportation. If that can be eliminated by TAAS, then great. More money to spend on optional fun cars etc.
The thing the public transportation wonks/greenies have missed over the years is that public transportation is inconvenient, UNLESS private transportation is made MORE inconvenient by traffic or artificial restriction. If there weren't traffic issues or restrictions on where you can drive or park, it is faster and more convenient to leave when you want, directly from your house, and go directly where you wish to go(See Minority Report for how this should look). TAAS solves the inconvenience of train schedules, multiple stop delays, travelling with freaky people i.e. all the sucky stuff of Public transport.
The question is: Will it be affordable enough to use? I hope so. It will be empowering for seniors, lower-income people etc. Additionally, since we already have this huge infrastructure in roads, it could save money by NOT building out bullet-trains, light-rails etc. etc. Instead go-all in on roads and let self-driving TAAS become the public/private transport of the future. I doubt the 2 lane roads in the mountains will be off limits to driver cars in my lifetime. If so, I will just have to find some one-lane bridges to leave the alloy-air car cops behind.....
<For those that don't understand what I am talking about in the last sentence, introduce yourself to RUSH's masterpiece - "Red Barchetta" and the lyrics.>