Pumped about design
Nearly falling into the category of human augmentation, the Pump-a-Bike is an extraordinary new personal watercraft developed in South Africa. Aside from it's dorky name and inelegant design, the pump-a-bike is a piece of exquisite engineering, which allows the rider to zip over the water at speeds up to 20 miles per hour by simply (and repeatedly) pushing down on the deck with a slight jumping motion. The key to its design is its specially designed hydrofoil blades, which provide lift and thrust with one profile. This ultra-simple idea is the reason it getting a mention on fuel.
Connecting Drivers... To Drivers
In any field, progress will tend to focus on one aspect of improvement until a change in culture, or need forces a shift. Often, those aspects are not chosen explicitly by the designer, but rather, by the consumers, and the marketplace as a whole. Perhaps no other industry has been as defined by this as the automotive business. Cars have specialized and re-specialized to fit each new desire of the driver. Now is the time for another shift in their function, because after 100 years, they're still broken.
Tiny (car) Revolution
Could it be that SkyWeb, the pod transport we blogged months ago is finally getting closer to reality? Apparently, their proposed test run of 2.8 miles of elevated track in New Jersey is gaining momentum, and may actually happen. Even though it's just a short walk worth of track, the implications of a successful test could be awesome.
If pods aren't your thing, tiny commuting is, and you're not living in Europe (oh how we envy your tiny cars) things are looking up in North America. Take a look.
A Many-Spoked Opportunity
Sometimes, when you get a nice hot summer day, and the breeze is blowing just right, you feel like there must be something better than taking the bus to work. Sure, it's saving fuel, and helping congestion, and it's cheap as all getout. But there is something that more and more people are realizing. Biking works. And designers can jump on the opportunity.
Soap Box For Big Boys
Think back to when you were eleven... Didn't you dream of having the coolest styling job on your Soap Box Derby racer. Didn't it always end up looking sadly like a cheesy painted coffin? Apparently, you're not alone.
Mass Transit for Real
"Mass" transit doesn't have to mean "pain in the ass" transit, at least if these enterprising visionaries get their way. All three of these companies propose PRT, or personal rapid transit systems that use networked computerized travel pods to take some of the "mass" out of mass transit, and give a more personalized experience.
Take a quick look at the e=motion. You’ll only get a quick look, because the e=motion is expected to break the electric world land record of 245mph, with an expected speed of around 300mph. The team was scheduled to test in Tunisia Wednesday, June 9th, but canceled because of unsafe conditions. We’re looking forward to seeing the results, but till then, we can only daydream about driving down El Rodeo Dr. in the e=motion. It might turn some heads, especially when the parachute deploys.
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Dominic Muren and IDFuel Team