I am very excited about Dean Kamen’s new invention.
When word first leaked of the existence of a new transportation device this past April, excitement flared up with lots of speculation about what “IT” was. The details have been kept secret until just this week. The device, now called the Segway Human Transporter can go up to 12 miles an hour. Its speed and direction are controlled solely by the rider’s shifting weight and a manual turning mechanism on one of the handlebars. At an average speed of 8 miles an hour, or three times walking pace, Mr. Kamen says the Segway can go 15 miles on a six- hour charge, for less than a dime’s worth of electricity from a standard wall socket.
We humans need to give up the personal automobile and we need to do it NOW! As I have written elsewhere, we are running out of fossil fuels. Industrial civilization, as we know it, cannot exist without petroleum. Any careful examination of the writings and papers of the world’s leading energy scientists will convince the reader of the validity of the fossil fuel energy crisis.
Dean Kamen may have come up with just the right device to make our weaning off of the personal automobile much less painful.