There’s no question that Uber’s presence has had an effect on Pittsburgh. But Pittsburgh helped draw “the self-driving map” that captured Uber’s interest. Much of the seminal technology for autonomous vehicles was developed (starting in 1984) and continues to be advanced by engineers and computer scientists here at Carnegie Mellon University.
This work didn’t happen overnight or in a vacuum. Pittsburgh, long known for innovation and “can do” spirit, was a willing early test ground for multiple transportation-focused technologies.