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How Will Segway Change The World?  
User currently offlineFlyBoeing From United States of America, joined May 2000, 866 posts, RR: 2
Posted (12 years 10 months 3 weeks 6 days ago) and read 1608 times:

Here is some background info on the Segway Human Transporter

http://www.segway.com

How do you guys think that this thing will change the world?

I think that it will make a large impact on American cities with inadequate mass transport systems. Suddenly, the following barriers to mass transport are alleviated:

1) The fact that you have to put mass transit stops (Metro stations, bus stops) within walking distance of where people want to go. The radius which a mass transit stop can serve is much larger and therefore the trains and busses go faster and stop less. The initial burden of construction is also smaller.

2) Many Americans are afraid of crime associated with walking to and from bus/Metro stops. Now that you can essentially go much much faster, old women have a speed advantage over a potential mugger.

3) Mass transit vehicles would carry a lot more people if everyone was standing up. You can get your Segway onto a mass transit vehicle since most are handicap accessible. This way you have a very seamless link between private/public transportation.

A couple of things that could be improved about the machine:

1) I think that an 11 mile range is way too small. I bet that if you put a fuel cell onboard (courtesy of Manhattan Scientifics) the device could have much longer range and no need to recharge.

2) I think that its mobility would be improved by having only one wheel. That way it could not only handle up/down slopes but side to side slopes. Such a machine could be used off prepared surfaces.

What do you guys think?

20 replies: All unread, jump to last
 
User currently offlineHoffa From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 1, posted (12 years 10 months 3 weeks 6 days ago) and read 1592 times:

I am having a hard time understanding why this story is generating so much interest.

I know Americans are lazy and generally like to sit on their fat arses all day long but this is ridiculous---probably a marketing ploy so everyone will buy one because if the neighbor has got it, so must you (Penis envy style concept).


User currently offlineIhadapheo From United States of America, joined Sep 2001, 6027 posts, RR: 55
Reply 2, posted (12 years 10 months 3 weeks 6 days ago) and read 1584 times:

Hoffa, I can just see it now, hey my Segway is bigger than your segway. I just want my segway to have a/c and crusie control.


Pray hard but pray with care For the tears that you are crying now Are just your answered prayers
User currently offlineTbar220 From United States of America, joined Feb 2000, 7013 posts, RR: 26
Reply 3, posted (12 years 10 months 3 weeks 6 days ago) and read 1581 times:

This worries me actually, because Americans are already generally pretty lazy, and something like this certainly wont help out.


NO URLS in signature
User currently offlineFlyBoeing From United States of America, joined May 2000, 866 posts, RR: 2
Reply 4, posted (12 years 10 months 3 weeks 6 days ago) and read 1578 times:

Come on, guys! Find the wonder in this innovation!

Sure it'll reduce the amount of walking. But it'll increase the amount of activity and standing up, which isn't that bad for you. It's certainly better than sitting on your ass in a car.


User currently offlineHoffa From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 5, posted (12 years 10 months 3 weeks 6 days ago) and read 1576 times:

And what about those of us who prefer to walk? Its already bad enough for pedestrians with everybody owning cars in this country, now we must face the prospect of being run over by glorified scooters. This thing is straight out of the Jetsons!

User currently offlineWietse From Netherlands, joined Oct 2001, 3809 posts, RR: 55
Reply 6, posted (12 years 10 months 3 weeks 6 days ago) and read 1575 times:

Hoffa, stop irritating everyone, and respect EVERYONE, including Americans....


Wietse de Graaf
User currently offlineFlyf15 From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 7, posted (12 years 10 months 3 weeks 5 days 23 hours ago) and read 1565 times:

I see this thing being a total nightmare in any areas even remotely crowded, where you must manuver through small places, etc. You just simply don't have the maneuverabilty that you do on feet.

User currently offlineMls515 From United States of America, joined Jun 2000, 3076 posts, RR: 9
Reply 8, posted (12 years 10 months 3 weeks 5 days 22 hours ago) and read 1553 times:



Does the thing live up to the speculation that it can run of pennies of electricity per day? If so, I see it as an alternative to using the fossil fuel burning car or bus for short trips. I think it could make quite an impact. Cities will have to be adapted to the use of the things, maybe having dedicated lanes of traffic for them.

I see the thing as a sucess for private enterprise applications alone, like in factories and sprawling corperate campuses. It will take a lot more time for them to be accepted in busy cities.

As a bus driver, I would be opposed to having Segway riders on my bus. Sure, our busses are handicapped accessible, but loading a wheelchair passenger is a three minute ordeal:

1. apply parking brake
2. switch lift power to 'on'
3. use lift control switch to lower lift.
4. instruct passenger to board lift platform
5. use lift control switch to raise lift
6. after passenger has boarded bus, stow the lift while holding safety switch
7. power lift off
8. turn engine fast idle on
9. retrieve wheelchair safety buckles
10. secure wheelchair rider

Then it is a similar pain in the ass to get the wheelchair rider off the bus. I would not want to do this for people who aren't strong enough to lift their Segways onto my bus and I certainly would not want to carry them up myself. There probably isn't enough headroom to allow a Segway rider to board with the lift anyway. And for safety's sake I certainly would not allow a Segway rider to stand on their Segway while the bus was in motion, especially since the riders cannot be secured to them and the things cannot be secured to the bus.


User currently offlineZauberfloete From Austria, joined Nov 2000, 302 posts, RR: 0
Reply 9, posted (12 years 10 months 3 weeks 5 days 20 hours ago) and read 1547 times:

How Segway will change the world?
Easy to answer.
Some managers that invested a lot of money into that thing will look for a new job.
Mr. Dean Kamen will loose his reputation as a wizard like inventor.
And two or three years later no one will remember that story.

Let me say that I wish them all the best, the world economy needs some new impulses.
But to be honest - there is nothing really new about that thing beside the controll mechanism.
And there are of course practical problems as with all other scooters.
It will probably be forbidden to use that device on the sidewalks, at least after the first accidents - and there will be accidents.
(by the way - all people that get hurt with that thing will probably call Ed Fagan to get some million dollars out of th "tragic" incident...)
And no one wants to use that on the streets. If you want to cruise down a street you take a car or motorbike or whatever.

And there is another problem - where to park that thing. Now you will say nowhere - just carry it into the office. Ok - that will work. But how about a restaurant, a cinema, a shopping mall...
A crowd of parked "segways" in front of a cinema is a nightmare - they look all the same, you will search for yours for hours (even if it is not stolen). I think it is unthinkable that everyone takes his segway into the cinema or restaurant.

It´s not a part of the body. It´s an aretfact. And if you take that thing everywhere arround with you, you will feel like a disabled person who needs his wheelchair, but is facing a lot of practical problems with it (e.g. a stairway is not built according to the proper standards).
I think this is a thing that causes more troubles then it solves.

This invention is in my opinion a very expansive Toy, not more. Sorry. That will not be the hit of the season at toysRus - just to expensive.....

But no one will be more happy than me, if that thing really becomes a bestseller - the world is in deep need for some business sucess...


User currently offlineCPDC10-30 From United Kingdom, joined Feb 2000, 4791 posts, RR: 23
Reply 10, posted (12 years 10 months 3 weeks 5 days 20 hours ago) and read 1541 times:

Whatever happened to walking and riding bicycles? Its bad enought already, being run down by a 300-pound woman in one of those handicapped scooters on the sidewalk.

User currently offlineDell_dude From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 11, posted (12 years 10 months 3 weeks 5 days 19 hours ago) and read 1540 times:

has anyone also realized that all of these damn things look the same. How the hell is everyone supposed to tell the difference between them???

STUPID INVENTION!!!!!


User currently offlineLON-CHI From United States of America, joined Apr 2001, 219 posts, RR: 0
Reply 12, posted (12 years 10 months 3 weeks 5 days 17 hours ago) and read 1529 times:

$3000 for a scooter that can travel 12mph, weighs 65lbs and only has a range of 11 miles per full charge?

No thanks, I'll stick to walking.

I fail to see what is so revolutionary about this thing. IT is nothing but hype. Very disappointing.


User currently offlineVoodoo From Niue, joined Mar 2001, 2091 posts, RR: 0
Reply 13, posted (12 years 10 months 3 weeks 5 days 15 hours ago) and read 1525 times:

In Britain it would be called: the Sinclair C5 Mark II.
Never heard of it outside (or inside) Britain?
Exactly.



` Yeaah! Baade 152! Trabi of the Sky! '
User currently offlineAussiemite From , joined Dec 1969, posts, RR:
Reply 14, posted (12 years 10 months 3 weeks 5 days 15 hours ago) and read 1521 times:

if you bothered to read my Ginger Video! thread you could watch a video of it.

User currently offlineFlyBoeing From United States of America, joined May 2000, 866 posts, RR: 2
Reply 15, posted (12 years 10 months 3 weeks 5 days 13 hours ago) and read 1515 times:

Mls515 said:

As a bus driver, I would be opposed to having Segway riders on my bus. Sure, our busses are handicapped accessible, but loading a wheelchair passenger is a three minute ordeal:

1. apply parking brake
2. switch lift power to 'on'
3. use lift control switch to lower lift.
4. instruct passenger to board lift platform
5. use lift control switch to raise lift
6. after passenger has boarded bus, stow the lift while holding safety switch
7. power lift off
8. turn engine fast idle on
9. retrieve wheelchair safety buckles
10. secure wheelchair rider

Then it is a similar pain in the ass to get the wheelchair rider off the bus. I would not want to do this for people who aren't strong enough to lift their Segways onto my bus and I certainly would not want to carry them up myself. There probably isn't enough headroom to allow a Segway rider to board with the lift anyway. And for safety's sake I certainly would not allow a Segway rider to stand on their Segway while the bus was in motion, especially since the riders cannot be secured to them and the things cannot be secured to the bus.


I think that standing on a Segway is more stable than standing on your own two feet. In any case, there is plenty of time for new busses to be manufactured, since busses are on a 5 year replacement cycle and this thing'll take at least that long to get into the mainstream.

I figure busses would get "Segway Adapted" with the following features:

1) A ramp that deploys so that people can just drive on.
2) Greater headroom so people can stand up.
3) The following changes to the bus' architecture:

a) a "lock down" point so that people can stand up on their Segways while riding.

b) a different layout where the bus has "stalls" along its sides where you leave your Segway and then stand up on the aisle side.

c) The same kind of setup they have on the Vermont Advance Transit systems: a Segway rack on the back of the bus. Ride your Segway onto the platform, step off, and get on the bus.


User currently offlineBernard Shakey From United States of America, joined Oct 2001, 560 posts, RR: 9
Reply 16, posted (12 years 10 months 3 weeks 5 days 12 hours ago) and read 1510 times:

Ohhhh, Segway will change the world! Yep, it'll give us all one more of those products that years from now we can stand around the water cooler and have one of those "rember that thing which..." conversations. Kinda like "New Coke," "I've fallen and can't get up," or "boy bands." We must band together as citizens of the world to ridicule pieces of crap that are dramatically hyped in order to make us think that we can't live without them.


Mindless drifter on the road, Carries such an easy load
User currently offlineEGGD From United Kingdom, joined Feb 2001, 12443 posts, RR: 35
Reply 17, posted (12 years 10 months 3 weeks 5 days 12 hours ago) and read 1503 times:

Looks like a wheelbarrow!

User currently offlineScotty From UK - Scotland, joined Dec 1999, 1875 posts, RR: 3
Reply 18, posted (12 years 10 months 3 weeks 5 days 12 hours ago) and read 1501 times:

It'll end up in the same place as the Sinclair C5, the Bristol Brabazon and the chocolate kettle!

User currently offlineSoren-a From Denmark, joined Sep 2001, 235 posts, RR: 0
Reply 19, posted (12 years 10 months 3 weeks 5 days 12 hours ago) and read 1500 times:

I think the biggest impact this thing will have is on other peoples ankels and knees.

This thing has the perfect hight for breaking ankels. Can hardly wait until the first law suits comes.

Regards
Søren Augustesen


User currently offlineJwenting From Netherlands, joined Apr 2001, 10213 posts, RR: 19
Reply 20, posted (12 years 10 months 3 weeks 5 days 11 hours ago) and read 1496 times:

1) you would need many more busses. Not only because of the time it takes to load all those things, but also because each passenger now effectively takes up 2 or 3 times as much space.

2) you forget that the mugger will also have one, eliminating the speed advantage (and the mugger will probably have a boosted one, which would be illegal so normal persons won't have it).

3) see 1. People won't accept standing up, not for more than a few minutes. Would you want to ride a train for 3 hours standing up on a not-to-stable platform? You'd just need larger trains/busses and/or more of them.

In the end, it will go the same way as the car that can be converted into an aircraft (remember that one?) and the late model Sinclair computers (yes, I do remember those. I saw ads in mags at the time).
Difference is that it will, thanks to the CNN effect and the internet, be a small hype for a while and the initial investors will get a lot of money for a year or so before it dies.
Secondary companies trying to cash in on the idea will arise and fail, leading to joblosses.



I wish I were flying
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