I took a road trip recently from Cincinnati to Washington, DC. This trip is a familiar one to me; in the 1990’s I traveled between the two cities by car at least twice a year. As I was driving, it struck me that as much as the world has changed in the past quarter century — the Internet, cell phones, Airbnb, Twitter, etc. — this trip was essentially the same as it was in the 1990’s. Technology has advanced at a rapid rate in the past few decades, yet how we travel has stagnated during that time.
True, recent years have seen some cosmetic changes in transportation. Most cars have more entertainment options than previous models, Uber is a thing now, and GPS mapping software is ubiquitous. Yet when it comes down to it, the two primary modes of transportation for most Americans — cars and planes — are at a fundamental level unchanged.