Why carpool website and apps have failed & the need for a carpool protocol ITEF RFC standard

Ever since Uber shares were bought up by Google, shooting Ubers net worth the several billion, a lot of young developers are trying to make the next Uber. This has resulted in there being around 250 Android carpooling apps on the Google Play Appstore & at least 48 open source carpool apps & websites & programs including my own attempt TravelSmart currently being maintained by a nice young gentleman from Florida called Chuk.

I went to Odessa Ukraine to meet a Olga in 2002, a lovely lady, I met on a Russian Romance website, &, was stunned about how readily people hiched lifts & carpooled there & most drivers would give one a lift anywhere for a a fraction of the cost of a Taxi.

This inspired me to make Travelsmart, in a friend Pio's house, between 2006 & 2009, when I was between contracts, we thought we'd out Googled Google. unfortunately I had a mental breakdown marketing it, nobody told me marketing was hard!, ( Google made various carpooling related buyups  over the years, &,  I suspect they also had management who had mental breakdowns, trying to make carpooling fly too ), I built my newspaper marketing up by namedropping one newspaper who talked about TravelSmart to get to the next & eventually managed to get 10 minutes on the Gerry Ryan Show on RTE Radio, one of Irelands largest daytime talkshows, in 2009, with, Marty Whelan, who buttered me up to perfection, as that charmer does, &, managed to double my customer base in one hour, thanks so much Marty!!!

Enough rambling, back to the main point!.

The proliferation of carpool websites has resulted in division of the customer base making carpool apps & websites nearly useless! ,why you might ask?

Because, these apps & websites, GENERALLY DON'T TALK TO EACH OTHER!, HOW STUPID CAN THEY BE.

Carpool Website A might have drivers going from New York to San Fransisco, &, Carpool Website B might have passengers going from New York to San Fransisco, but, they can't be matched up!, because the Websites don't talk, &, the more carpool website that come online the worse things get, thus the need a carpool protocol.

After contacting around 30 carpool app developers on google play, I was informed that, there is a standard in France called RDEX being enhanced by SocialCar.com, This Link somewhat describes their implementation and API.

The earlier RDEX version I did read fully didn't appear to deal with passengers & drivers giving feedback on each other. Also I believe a means of contacting carpoolers next of kin needs to be implemented if feedback is not given in a carpool in case the carpooler was harmed or murdered during the carpool. This might benefit from a technology like Hyperledger to maintain proof of carpools done between drivers & passengers & make carpooling basically tamperproof.


P.S. I have a carpool protocol mailing list here which due to hosting problems will need someone else to take it over.

About the Author

D.J. Barrow is a semi retired Linux Kernel Hacker, &, Engineer &, Richard Feynman Fan & can be contacted at barrow_dj@yahoo.com.

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