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This is IT?

michael posted more than 12 years ago | from the world-shattering-public-relations dept.

Technology 1787

Dave (picked at random) and 8000 other slashdot readers wrote in to tell us that they too had been overcome by the relentless hype machine that is IT, Ginger, Segway, whatever. Read about IT in your favorite hype-dispensing media outlet, each of which thinks that it has an exclusive on the story of IT. Flash diagram of IT. Time. NY Times. Reuters. And don't forget to watch the advertisement, errr, "demonstration" of IT on Good Morning Consumers tomorrow. Update: 12/03 13:37 GMT by T : Segway's webmaster John Grohol points out the segway website as well.

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french toast! (-1, Offtopic)

FunkSoulBrother (140893) | more than 12 years ago | (#2645548)

with scrambled eggs and syrup...

Re:french toast! (-1)

Retarded_One (518093) | more than 12 years ago | (#2645586)

I would like to take a break from my normal plea to dedicate first posts to the destruction of palestineans, and share this with you all.

Niggers. []

Yes, niggers. They seem to think that by raping a virgin (which in africa seems to be ugly 10-year olds), they can cure themselves of aids.

Brilliant work, Dr.Nappyhead!

I know what IT is. (-1, Flamebait)

tarp (95957) | more than 12 years ago | (#2645552)

I know what IT is.

It's the final release of a working Debian GNU/HURD distro.

I bet you're all surprised!

Southpark (3, Funny)

fishebulb (257214) | more than 12 years ago | (#2645553)

The southpark version was hilarious
"Well atleast its better than dealing with the airlines"

Arrogance more powerful than its technology? (4, Interesting)

MelMcGee (538062) | more than 12 years ago | (#2645555)

"Nothing has happened at the level of the pedestrian to improve transportation since we invented the sneaker..." Really. Firstly, once on wheels, can the driver be considered a "pedestrian?" Secondly, what about bicycles, scooters, and the like. I'm sure there is some incredible technology going on there, but the arrogance seems much more powerful.

Re:Arrogance more powerful than its technology? (1)

ajuda (124386) | more than 12 years ago | (#2645657)

"Nothing has happened at the level of the pedestrian to improve transportation since we invented the sneaker..."

What about roller blades??

What is important in technology? (5, Insightful)

IRNI (5906) | more than 12 years ago | (#2645557)

It may be hyped but it could be a breakthrough. At any rate it is something that interests us as geeks. Stories about this broke on friday or maybe before and you have been getting thousands of submissions on the subject. It took you until tonight to actually post it. Hi, I don't know if you know tons of people think things are neat that you may not, but it is true. So if you get lots of posts on something then maybe it is worth posting.

Was it worth a 100 fucking million dollars? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2645620)

"Developed at a cost of more than $100 million"

EXCUSE ME??? I think the curve for IQ assesment has to be adjusted, VC's have just managed to proove that it should extend well into the negative realm.

hmm (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2645558)

i hope it is a way to get angelina jolie's hot lips all over me.

oh wait, i run linux. i'd be lucky to get janet reno.

This is it? (1)

BiggestPOS (139071) | more than 12 years ago | (#2645559)

Sadly, I'm disappointed. All the hype.. Oh well, I'm sure I'll buy one, why the hell not right?

"I'm sure I'll buy one, why the hell not right?" (1)

glrotate (300695) | more than 12 years ago | (#2645622)

Probably because they're $8000.

Linux (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2645561)

Why does Linux suck so much filthy ass [] ? What's so good about it - that it's free? You know what else is free? Herpes.

First port dedicated to Natalie Postman

So what! (1, Flamebait)

Silver222 (452093) | more than 12 years ago | (#2645563)

It's one of those goddamned scooters with an electric engine. Now instead of just dodging kids riding those things on the street, I'm going to have to dodge adults tooling around on these. I hope this revolutionary new device doesn't stick to the front of a Honda, or I'm going to be pissed!

Re:So what! (1)

Xoro (201854) | more than 12 years ago | (#2645595)

Better still, the electric motor means you won't even hear it coming.

What a piece of junk.

Age old technology gets a facelift.... (1, Flamebait)

RogrWilco (522139) | more than 12 years ago | (#2645564)

Is anyone else sick and tired of 20 year old technology getting slapped together into some cheezy consumer product and being heralded as the cure for cancer? Is a gyrosco-ped supposed to make me go out and spend a ton of money on something that is functionally useless?

Maybe we haven't been telling people what we want loud enough, because they're getting worse at guessing. Come on market researchers, earn your money!

Re:Age old technology gets a facelift.... (3, Funny)

DAldredge (2353) | more than 12 years ago | (#2645605)

Please don't insult Linux, this is Slashdot after all!

Re:Age old technology gets a facelift.... (0, Offtopic)

RogrWilco (522139) | more than 12 years ago | (#2645663)

If anything has been slapped together out of old technology, it's Microsoft Office, but hey, that's just fact, you don't have to believe it.

Hey Visio is a good product, let's buy it, slap a MS logo on it, and sell it for double the price.
I have Visio 4.0 kicking around the office which is the last version before the Redmond Giant bought out the company, and it has most of the functionality of the MS Version (with all the office menus stripped out) and doesn't crash nearly as often!

Why waste all the time developing "gyros"... (1, Flamebait)

Astral Traveller (540334) | more than 12 years ago | (#2645565)

...when you could just add a third wheel to this rehashed Razor Scooter out in front and improve balance *without* $3000 of worthless technology? Sure, it'd look like a motorised tricycle, but it's about as useful as one anyway. It looks like the dot-com "hype-over-substance" marketing tactic has crossed over into transportation too.

Re:Why waste all the time developing "gyros"... (3, Informative)

NonSequor (230139) | more than 12 years ago | (#2645648)

Apparently this uses less power than that would.

Re:Why waste all the time developing "gyros"... (2)

GrEp (89884) | more than 12 years ago | (#2645684)

The question is do the gyros keep balence, or help to power the thing?

You can get a lot of energy going in gyro. Just think of the spinners in Battlebots. They have more powerfull hits than about anything else in the arena.

From the Time article it sounded to me more like he was using a gyroscopic motion as a form of momentum. I just can't think of how he translates that into ground friction, or beter yet got rid of most ground friction.

South Park (3, Offtopic)

man_ls (248470) | more than 12 years ago | (#2645566)

Wasn't there a thing named IT in an episode of South Park? Mr. Garrison was pissed at airline companies and invented his own form of transportation involing a gyroscope and an anal probe.


Yep... (3, Informative)

Greyfox (87712) | more than 12 years ago | (#2645581)

And it was in part spoofing the original IT stories. It was a good episode, well worth watching. As far as I'm concerned, their comments about air travel were dead on ("Will people go through that just to get around?" "It's still better than dealing with the airlines" "Oh... Yeah... Yeah...")

It's a damn scooter (1)

WildBeast (189336) | more than 12 years ago | (#2645568)

What advantages does it bring that the bicycle doesn't? And what exactly will people do in winter? Sure they say that it works well on snow, but I don't feel like riding it when it's -40 degrees outside. I agree, it's a technological marvel but I don't see how it can help me in my day-to-day live. At a speed of 8 miles an hour, it's clearly not enough. I can walk faster than that.

Re:It's a damn scooter (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2645584)

You walk 8 mph?

Re:It's a damn scooter (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2645592)

Don't get me wrong, I think "IT" is stupid, but 8 mph is 2.66 times faster than you or I walk on average.

Re:It's a damn scooter (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2645597)

What do people on bicycles do during the winter? And secondly, you can't walk faster than eight miles an hour. Most people break into a sprint at around five, depending on the length of their stride.

Re:It's a damn scooter (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2645625)

I'm sure everyone else will call you a dumbass for saying you can walk 8mph, so I'll get to more important things. Why the HELL would you live anywhere where it gets to -40 degrees?!?!?! Jesus, now THAT'S is stupidity!

Re:It's a damn scooter (1)

gimple (152864) | more than 12 years ago | (#2645633)

I can walk faster than that.

Man, you must be tearin' it up when you walk. That is roughly 7.5 minute miles. When I ran marathons, I ran just under 8 minute miles--nowhere near world-class, but in about the middle of the pack. You must be some kinda walkin' machine.

not a scooter (2)

Alien54 (180860) | more than 12 years ago | (#2645689)

To make the machine even safer, it comes equipped with three computerized keys that set speed and performance limits. The slowest setting, now called training mode, used to be jokingly referred to around DEKA as CEO mode.

Not just a scooter, but similar. with computer controls to slow down the boss and allow you to track them

I guess we'll just have to see it to "get it". From everything I see, there is a big cooness factor involved. And I gues it doesn't have an engine. which makes me say "HUH?!"

The most important... (2, Redundant)

banky (9941) | more than 12 years ago | (#2645569)

The most important part of this is the "just think about stopping" part, the advanced system that mimics human movement.

While I predict this will be at BEST a fad, we can now finally take the core technology and start building robotic war mecha.

Re:The most important... (1)

RogrWilco (522139) | more than 12 years ago | (#2645624)

That's about the only positive point I see in this whole thing too. Just like the Aibo-Icybie thing, Someone will build a cheaper model, pushing the component costs down to a reasonable and tolerable level, where they can be used for much more inventive/exciting things like the personal flying vehicles we were promised by 2000 in the 60's or the robotic maids a-la Jetsons.
Maybe I can use this technology to give inebriated college students the ability to walk the straight line and amass a fortune... Now that's worth $3000.00 a pop!

The Great RW

And if you don't believe that I'm great, go ahead and ask me.

Re:The most important... (1)

Xoro (201854) | more than 12 years ago | (#2645644)

While I predict this will be at BEST a fad, we can now finally take the core technology and start building robotic war mecha.

Well, it is made of Gundanium...

huh? (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2645570)

i thought it made calculators

What a big yawn (2, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2645571)

What a load of hype. So the Segway has no engine or brakes, but it has motors. So, it uses gyros and the motors to maintain stability/locomotion (doing away with the throttle), and it uses a wrist control to go left/right. The motors must use regenerative braking to stop and recharge the batteries. Looks like the Segway is an imaginative, very high-tech, very expensive.... electric scooter.

Hmm... If the Segway is allowed on sidewalks, there would be instant competition in the form of conventional electric scooters. They wouldn't be anywhere near as cool, but they also wouldn't cost $3000 or more. And, they'd run longer since they would not need to expend juice to feed the gyros and microcontrollers.

everybodys doing it (1)

m00s3m4n (539936) | more than 12 years ago | (#2645572)

Hey, if everybodys doing it, it must be cool. Kinda like smoking, drinking, screwing, etc...

Re:everybodys doing it (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2645604)

Everybody's not screwing. I smoke and I drink because I can't screw. I'm an ugly bastard and no sane being, human or otherwise, would ever screw me. Maybe I can screw "IT."

Well... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2645629)

Screwing is pretty cool, actually.

Just what we need (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2645575)

Another thing to make Americans more lazy. I mean come on if you cant bring yourself to walk the 25 feet between your living room and bathroom to take a leak, you should be shot. 7 deadly sins - sloth.

Necessity breeds innovention. If your 500lbs boss cant seem to walk the distance between his/her limo and office then use Ginger!!!! Think of all the pain on his/her knee joints.

My sig (if i could remember my login): Je m'en fiche!

Re:Just what we need (1)

fishebulb (257214) | more than 12 years ago | (#2645650)

how do you know its JUST americans, you think this wont be avail in europe?

7 deadly sins, hahaha

Re:Just what we need (1)

RogrWilco (522139) | more than 12 years ago | (#2645686)

Europe has a much improved public transportation infrastructure over North America, and a slightly higher level of self respect than to be seen on one of those abominations. To top it all off, the cost of living is considerably higher, especially in the urban areas, which is where the product is marketed for.

cities eh (2, Insightful)

jonnycowboy (515894) | more than 12 years ago | (#2645576)

It just be super-revolutionary,but do we all really beleive Steve Job's comment that "cities will be built around it?" taking a looking at Time's 'scoop', i find that hardly possible.

Re:cities eh (1)

WildBeast (189336) | more than 12 years ago | (#2645593)

From now on I'm gonna stop listening to what Steve Jobs says. Man what a disappointment.

Re:cities eh (0, Flamebait)

fishebulb (257214) | more than 12 years ago | (#2645669)

i stopped listening to him, oh wait, i never did, he hasnt dont anything amazing (besides marketing hype) for as long as i can remeber. Imac, POS in a pretty case.

The iPac, its the next logical step in mp3 players, wow thats real revolutionary.

Steven King, DEAD! (-1)

Fecal Troll Matter (445929) | more than 12 years ago | (#2645577)

This is IT []

I think it's dumb. (1, Troll)

methangel (191461) | more than 12 years ago | (#2645578)

Ok, it's a scooter, it goes slower than a moped, yet a little faster than walking. Big deal. Are we all willing to shell out that much cash to go slightly faster than walking? Don't even get me started on how it looks like the person is riding on an old fashioned push-mower.

I doubt this will revolutionize anything, all the gyro's and balance monitoring aside, it isn't that practical. It looks gay.

Re:I think it's dumb. (4, Funny)

zhensel (228891) | more than 12 years ago | (#2645626)

"It looks gay."

Frankly, I don't see how this is possible. As an 'IT', it is neither male nor female and is thus not capable of homosexual activity.

Re:I think it's dumb. (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2645662)

im gay and I wont even ride it.

Too bad Google disregard uppercase letters (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2645579)

A search for IT [] will find about 410,000,000 results, most of which are about the lower case "it". Didn't they learn from the DIVX/DivX confusion?

Cute but... (1)

Irvu (248207) | more than 12 years ago | (#2645583)

It's not like they've discovered flight or built the first boat or the wheel [] . All they've done is engineered a nice electric scooter. Cool but it seems harly "earth shattering", perhaps "earth nudging."

WTF? (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2645585)

fuck micheal, what's with the fucking contempt? excuse me and the 8000 or more other /.'ers who are curious if not excited about finding out what IT is. "good morning consumers" -- oooh, you really gave it to abc there, didn't cha. why doesn't /. thumb it's nose at a media organization more on it's league, like a highschool newspaper somewhere.

fuck you, i'm sick of this holier-than-thu, too cool for anything but what taco says is cool bullshit..


Quiditch Match Anyone? (1)

Sgt_Nikon (131875) | more than 12 years ago | (#2645588)

This thing is alost a flying broom so I say we start the NQL, National Quiditch League.

Re:Quiditch Match Anyone? (-1)

Retarded_One (518093) | more than 12 years ago | (#2645614)

Shutup, you faggot-assed hairy pooper fanboy.

Ginger...WTF?!?!? (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2645591)

Maryann was more of a babe, by far!

Miss Emily Littella reports... (1)

Geek In Training (12075) | more than 12 years ago | (#2645594)

Wow, that Dean Kane guy sure has been busy since the young Superman series ended. Who would have though a handsome actor could also be such a brilliant scientist and inventor??

What that's you say? Dean KAMEN?



Re:Miss Emily Littella reports... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2645628)

not funny.

just dumb.

you try too hard.

Re:Miss Emily Littella reports... (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2645675)

Spank you very much, wakka wakka wakka, I'll be with you all week! :)

technology (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2645596)

Although I'm sure that many /.ers are disappointed in IT, IT is a practical application of new technology. While it is not the pollution powered rocket ship that some had envisioned, it is a definite step forward.

I personally think that more efficient forms of transportation could be very important, especially considering the fact that we get the fuel for our cars from the middle east. While the war in Afghanistan is going well, it will not eliminate strife in the area, and oil prices could well rise. After the Middle East is largely under the control of the USA, oil companies will likely gain a monopoly on Middle Eastern oil, another event likely to drive up oil prices. I'd love to see the big oil companies lose a bunch of money encouraging this war, only to find out that everyone's moving around on little scooters and the Middle East oil isn't very valuable anymore.

Not gonna work (1)

Null_Packet (15946) | more than 12 years ago | (#2645599)

These will never be successful as long as people are scared of 10 year olds.

Besides, many cities, counties and states do not allow vehicles of this description on sidewalks.

Help I broke a leg ! (1)

SpaceKow (24359) | more than 12 years ago | (#2645600)


Can I drive this thing with crutches ??


That's IT??? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2645601)

I guess the rumors were true.
I for one am very disappointed. How is this more important than the internet? But what is?

these will revolutionize the internet. (1)

tcd004 (134130) | more than 12 years ago | (#2645603)

they'll be a very efficient way of delivering AOL signup cd's door to door.

Soon, @home will be our victim, but right now, it's only Michael Jackson, Verizon, the Pentium 4 and Ain't it Cool News []

I can't wait! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2645606)

I can't wait to run one of these with my now useless 4000 lb piece of metal.

Worthless peice of shit (1)

HowIsMyDriving? (142335) | more than 12 years ago | (#2645610)

If this came out when scooters were still "in" it might have been some what cool, but I live in Wisconsin, and I am sure as hell not going to use this in winter. What is the point of this? I am sure its nice, but riding your bike would be easier. Also, many municipalities do now allow anykind of wheeled transportation on sidewalks (wheelchairs are allowed). I would not go down main street at 10 miles per hour on one of these with people pulling in and out. I doesn't even look that manuverable. I am sure what is left of the Silicon Valley techies that have jobs will get these, but no one else.
Why doesn't he bring out his stirling cycle engine that he is also hyping. That would have been alot more useful.

This should amusing. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2645613)

I swear, I'm going to get sued when I'm crashed into by a corporate CEO who gets his $4000 suit ruined.

Even the sight of corporate monkeys riding around on these things on sidewalks will be hilarious.

It's world-changing! (3, Redundant)

szcx (81006) | more than 12 years ago | (#2645616)

Steve Jobs has seen it and he said it would change the world. Remember the last time he said that? He was introducing the iMac.

Re:It's world-changing! (1, Troll)

zhensel (228891) | more than 12 years ago | (#2645639)

Actually, I think the last time was with the G3 Cube, unless you count the iPod, which has yet to play out. Note that he was actually right with the cube - it changed the world of plastics quality assurance.

This reminds me of... (0, Redundant)

zoombah (447772) | more than 12 years ago | (#2645617)

Does anybody else remember the South Park in which Mr. Garrison builds a device which goes at 300MPH and 150MPG? He does this because of the piss poor service at airlines. The government bans use of his device because otherwise the sagging airline industry will suffer.

Hey, it could happen.

stopping power (1)

FrenZon (65408) | more than 12 years ago | (#2645618)

The real strength of this, wasn't really focused on in the articles - it's easy to use.

Obviously, having never ridden one, I can't say for sure, but it seems that all the gyros et al will lead to this being a very simple getabout.

Of course, being a mountain biker, if I see any of these on the bike paths, I will be throwing magnets at you .. let's see your fancy gyromajig work then. AHAR!


Why all the hype? (1)

LibertarianCrackSmok (536453) | more than 12 years ago | (#2645619)

Why does everyone assume that "IT" is going to be the next great product that will solve everyones problems? Sure, this guy has made some great stuff in the past but that doesn't at all mean that "IT" will be great or useful. IT could be a useless piece of shit. It could be some product that looks great on the surface(e.g. Parking meters that were first made to ease parking and traffic problems and now are used to make cities tons of money and not help with traffic or anything else now) but turns out to be just another product destroyed by the human desire to make money. I hope it's great but why the hell fall into the hype just to be let down and upset about what IT really is later?

um... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2645621)

And this is better than my decked-out 2.8-liter Audi A4 HOW?

I thought... (1)

nettdata (88196) | more than 12 years ago | (#2645623)

Coke was "It"?

My brain hurts.

No Engine? (2)

Alien54 (180860) | more than 12 years ago | (#2645630)

Developed at a cost of more than $100 million, Kamen's vehicle is a complex bundle of hardware and software that mimics the human body's ability to maintain its balance. Not only does it have no brakes, it also has no engine, no throttle, no gearshift and no steering wheel. And it can carry the average rider for a full day, nonstop, on only five cents' worth of electricity.

Anyone got a better idea what this is about?

No Engine?

Why do I suddenly feel like Homer?

IT -- successor of the banana peel (2, Funny)

iskander (9699) | more than 12 years ago | (#2645632)

Apparently, balance is attained with the help of sensors and logic boards and powerful electric motors. I think it'll be fun to watch an IT malfunction (perhaps as a result of a bug in the firmware) or run out of juice while someone is riding it. Will she fall forwards or backwards? In any case, I am sure it will be a very characteristic and, after a while, instantly recognizable motion. IT will be the high-tech version of the banana peel -- instant laugh for everybody who's watching at that fateful moment.

Can't help thinking about Transmeta (3, Funny)

jkovach (1036) | more than 12 years ago | (#2645634)

When I look at the hype surrounding this thing, it reminds me of Transmeta. Transmeta had some of the world's brightest computer geeks working on a s3kr1t pr0j3k+ that would change the world, and it turned out to be yet another x86 clone (whoo hoo.) Now there is another company with bright scientists working on a s3kr1t pr0j3k+ that would change the world, and it turns out to be a motorscooter. (whoo hoo.)

Moral of the story: Don't believe the hype.

It doesn't look like much but... (2, Insightful)

Da VinMan (7669) | more than 12 years ago | (#2645635) gotta admit, it could solve some real problems in big cities. Kamen's genius lies not only in his engineering, but in his realistic viewpoint. He knows that, except for the early adopter crowd, people aren't going to want these. However, that won't matter. If you read the Time article, he tells you straight up that he's going to focus on postal carriers, police, etc. first. Once Ginger is proven in those capacities, people will want one. Also note that he's seeing it as a middle ground commute vehicle. I personally would've shelled out the money to be able to be in traffic with a Ginger instead of my pig of a car that takes so much space and had a payload of exactly 1 person. (And don't even get me started on car pooling; what a frickin waste of time!)

Jews (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2645636)

Seems like the Jews have finally decided to release more of their advanced technology. Of course, this probably means that they've developed something new, so they feel comfortable giving us this now outdated electric scooter. I hope Osama Bin Laden bombs Israel.


kungfooguru (522172) | more than 12 years ago | (#2645638)

wasnt this a south park episode. 511_The_Entity Yup it is from that episode, hehe, no really watch it.

is IT cool? (1)

mattvd (44096) | more than 12 years ago | (#2645640)

Yes, I think Segway is cool. Of course, it's been so overhyped that unless it has the ability to teleport people across space it will feel like a disappointment.

IT's not for you! (5, Insightful)

rufusdufus (450462) | more than 12 years ago | (#2645641)

This thing is not for rich suburban white guys who hang out on internet all day. Its for postmen and chinamen. Ever been to a crowded asian city? What a nightmare. The elites will definitaly prefer a Segway to other vehicles. The american consumer is probably the last market for this thing.

so what? (2, Redundant)

truesaer (135079) | more than 12 years ago | (#2645642)

This thing is probably expensive and weighs a ton. Oooh, it stands up on its own, how have I lived without it! If you want an electric personal transportation device, TH!NK [] about one of these instead.

Replace the car? (1)

Rareul (537940) | more than 12 years ago | (#2645643)

Unfortunately not.

Make us fatter?

Yes -- 8 miles per hour replaces only a single mode of transportation that I am familiar with: walking. Not true -- elevators go O(10^1) mph, safest mode of transport too, unlike these death traps! (sp?)

Close sources speculate... (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2645645)

It might be a semen-powered vibrating hand. Can we still add items to the geek with list?

Might not be funny, but it's not a troll.

Motorization (0, Redundant)

BelDion (109503) | more than 12 years ago | (#2645647)

I hate to complain, but this seems a little unnecessary doesn't it? My progenitors have spent millions upon millions of years evolving all these groovy body parts. More relevantly, I've evolved these nifty LEG things to which comes attach an even niftier FOOT. Not only that, but I have two of these wonderful appendages.

What does this mean? Well, in simple terms, if I want to go somewhere, I don't need to friggin trumped up little scooter because, thank's to these nifty legs... I can get in a car and drive.

What, You thought I would walk? Are you mad?

Can this really be a cost saver? (0, Flamebait)

nysus (162232) | more than 12 years ago | (#2645649)

The NY Times article seemed just a tad tolerant of the hucksterism going on here. In addition to the cost of the vehicle, throw in maintenance costs, insurance costs, extra insurance for worker's comp payments when your postman goes down on this thing and the 3 mph that he loses when carrying a 50 lb bag of mail on his back because he "doesn't need" a truck and you got yourself a great big worthless fleet of hype machines on your hands. Someone has friends in high places to get the USPS to want to take these contraptions for a test spin.

what if people don't have good imaginations? (1)

supernova87a (532540) | more than 12 years ago | (#2645651)

1. Ok, I'm visualizing moving forward on my new scooter.

2. Hey, look at that -- this is pretty neat!

3. Ok, now I'm visualizing turning the corner...

4. Wow, it knows what I want!

5. Ok, let's go a little faster.

6. Cool.

7. Umm. That tree is coming towards us awful fast, visualizing not hitting it.

8. Hello, anyone there?


10. Ok, visualizing getting out of the hospital bed...

Wrong answer (0)

countach (534280) | more than 12 years ago | (#2645652)

We do need a revolution in transport. Something
like a low three wheeled bike with a mini petrol
motor, weighing about 30kg would do the trick.
Keep it simple will solve our transport problems.
This segway gimmick won't.

COULD be exceedingly useful (2, Insightful)

Ephemeriis (315124) | more than 12 years ago | (#2645653)

I must admit that I'm fairly disappointed by "IT". I was somehow hoping for giant war mecha or something of that type. I don't electric scooter like this just lacks something...especially after all this hype. Reading through the posts here, I can see that most of you are in agreement with me. However, I really think we're missing the point. Steve Jobs could be right.
We Americans have never really been very much interested in public transportation. Trains, busses, subways...they all take second place to our cars. Our nice, inefficient, polluting cars. Now then, could you imagine if these things genuinely cought on? Imagine having our cities interconnected with high-speed railways, not highways. Imagine replacing all the roads in our cities with smaller pedestrian walkways, populated with people on Segways. Imagine how much less polution there would be, how much less noise would be generated, and how much less space would be wasted.

Yeah, I know...I'm still waiting for my flying cars and giant robots...but this could actually be useful technology.


Quick! Register :) (1)

MickyJ (188652) | more than 12 years ago | (#2645654)

Quick! Register :)

Why can't anyone see the implications of this? (5, Insightful)

drivers (45076) | more than 12 years ago | (#2645656)

You say it is "just a scooter". That is like calling the automobile just a "horseless carriage." It's just the closest concept you have to fit. As far as hype, Kamen tried to downplay the "hype" none of which was advertisement, but statements "taken out of context" from the likes of Jobs and Metcalfe (you know the guy who said linux would "fade away"). Can't you see that a vehicle which uses Dynamic Stability to be driven as an extension of your own body movements is a great innovation? What the hell happened to Slashdot, where putting linux on the dreamcast is cool, just because it can be done, yet the Segway is "just a scooter." What the hell?

anonymous cowards UNITE! (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2645658)

and use this NEW goatse link! here it is! []

Begging Questions and Urban Planning (0, Insightful)

Donut (128871) | more than 12 years ago | (#2645661)

I think that this is a pretty cool invention, and this guy is the real thing. But I was extremely disapointed when he started commenting about how it was going to "change cities" and get rid of cars.

This assertion begs several questions (which are extremly relevent to someone living in, say, Austin, where I am):

1. How many people live close enough to work that they can afford the time to communte on a device that moves at walking speed? (no one I know)

2. How many people live in places where the weather is neither too warm or too cold to spend the time outside?

3. How many businesses have the infrastructure to handle storing and charging these things?

4. Is it really going to share the sidewalk with pedestrians? Where are they going to go now?

5. What about security? Riding around on a $3000 device that can't move faster than walking speed is a huge crime oppurtunity.

I really get disapointed when people who are smart in one are (ie fantastic engineering) think that they can easily solve all the problems (real or not) for the rest of us. The market of ideas, economics, and labor always decides what happens based on the aggregate effect of the millions of small decisions made by the individuals.

If his device really is good enought to get rid of cars, it won't be because he SAID so, it will be because he made something that has the same (or better) combination of convinience, speed, economy (both $$ and time), and security as the car. And, unfortunately, this cool device is not "IT".

Donut, glad "IT" doesn't make you DP and ski-pole to operate.

Emission free engine? (1)

//violentmac (186176) | more than 12 years ago | (#2645664)

Yeah Time, it's called a fucking electric motor.

I couldnt use it daily, but I would like one. (3, Redundant)

BrookHarty (9119) | more than 12 years ago | (#2645666)

My street is 45mph, it only does 17mph. I only live 5 miles from work, but we dont have bike lanes or sidewalks for me to use it. Most of the people at work live 20+ miles, not doable. And my laptop bag is too heavy to carry that far.

Really, the only thing I could use it for is short trips to the store, but where would I carry my groceries?

Before I could use it daily, need the roads to have bike lanes, and I need to carry a payload.

Neat idea but.... (2, Interesting)

MtViewGuy (197597) | more than 12 years ago | (#2645668)

While Dean Kamen's Segway scooter is an interesting technological achievement, I have two concerns:

1. Because using Segway is so unlike anything out there in terms of personal transportation devices, the reseller better really teach people how to use it correctly. I have visions of clueless Segway riders crashing into other pedestrians and larger vehicles because they're not used to how to stop this scooter.

2. The US$3,000.00 cost for the personal version is way too expensive, IMHO. Kamen should seriously talk with the one company that produce a Segway-like scooter at a reasonable cost: Honda. Using its motorcycle and electric vehicle expertise, Honda could build such a scooter for US$1,800.00 or less per scooter.

Clunky (1)

astrotek (132325) | more than 12 years ago | (#2645672)

This thing looks big and clunky, it will never become popular.

Unless it can be carried around as a handbag and is light enough for grandma to carry it might accually be popular. Those razor scooters seem like a pain in the ass to carry around when your in the store. The same goes for bikes and rollerblades when you arent using them.

On the other hand, the same can be said for a car. Except that cars have parking spots and bikes have bike racks and that explains why they are more popular to use than any other type of mechanical transportation.

I can't believe it is so lame.... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2645673)

Steve Jobs reckoned this thing was going to change the world. Ladies and Gentlemen, I think we have been conned!!

Can't imagine why you'd want one (0, Flamebait)

beth_linker (210498) | more than 12 years ago | (#2645679)

It's heavier, cheaper and slower than a bicycle, not to mention 10 times more expensive. Why bother?

A step forward? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 12 years ago | (#2645681)

How is this any different than the motorized scooters that kids are using these days? Looks to me that scooters have the advantage of folding up and taking up less space. Now if they were powered by nuclear waste using thermonic devices that would be cool.

Wanna see something completely fscked? (3, Offtopic)

SimJockey (13967) | more than 12 years ago | (#2645683)

Go to [] and you'll get the standard IE "This page cannot be displayed" form with all sorts of helpful advice on why it can't.
Which is all well and good, except I am using Omniweb. Damn that freaked me out.
Let the conspiracy theories begin!

I'm horrified (1, Flamebait)

geek (5680) | more than 12 years ago | (#2645685)

This is yet another way for people to remove themselves from nature. Just another reason for people to get fat and lazy and ride a scooter around the shopping mall instead of use the tools god gave them that just so happen to be attached to their legs.

It's trendy, gauranteed to be over priced and basically useless. It steers itself, yeah great ok. Steering was so hard, it's about time someone put an end to all this steering nonsense. I mean actually having to turn the handle bars, god forbid. This is the greatest invention since power steering.

Gimme a break. How long before the sillicon valley yuppie is spotted at Yosemite park in their BMW SUV with a Ginger strapped to the back so they can ride through the park at 12 miles an hour to digest the sites faster so they can talk on their cell phones at the next stop and plug more data into their PDA before they shuffle off to their mobile office (BMW SUV) and cellular fax machine.

I'm sick to death of this crap. To all lazy people, get a mountain bike!!! Go hiking!! Do something with those patheticlly weak limbs attached to your flabby body.
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