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Flying Cars Ready To Take Off

timothy posted more than 9 years ago | from the they're-already-late dept.

Technology 819

Ant writes "CBS News has an article, images, and a free streaming video clip of Elwood (Woody) Norris' invention of a working flying machine, AirScooter. He asked one of his test pilots to demonstrate it for 60 Minutes on a hilltop outside San Diego, California. It can fly for 2 hours at 55 mph, and go up to 10,000 feet above sea level. This week, he will receive America's top prize for invention. It's called the Lemelson-MIT award -- a half-million dollar cash prize to honor his life's work, which includes a brand new personal flying machine. Woody Norris' and others' inventions are for NASA's 'The Highway in the Sky.' It is a computer system designed to let millions of people fly whenever they please, and take off and land from wherever they please, in their very own vehicles."

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60 Minutes (0, Redundant)

CypherXero (798440) | more than 9 years ago | (#12268205)

I saw this on 60 Minutes last night, it was pretty interesting.

Headline is wrong (4, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12268208)

Should say:-

Flying cars to be made available in fifteen years time

This is just a sickening attempt to get our hopes up.

Fifteen years is nothing.... (3, Funny)

lottameez (816335) | more than 9 years ago | (#12268243)

If this thing is "real", we're going to need 15 years to get things straightened out so people aren't flying drunk, teenagers aren't racing their air scooters in public air corridors, and Starbucks has a chance to start opening outlets at 10,000 feet.

Re:Fifteen years is nothing.... (5, Funny)

bmw (115903) | more than 9 years ago | (#12268320)

15 years? Try 1500... We've had cars for over 100 years now and we still haven't found a way to keep people from driving drunk and teanagers from racing in public. We probably never will. Now, Starbucks at 10,000 feet... well... there's something that wouldn't surprise me. They've already run out of space on the ground. I know of a place where you can sit in one Starbucks and look out the window across the street at guess what... Another Starbucks!

Mirror?!? (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12268347)

I know of a place where you can sit in one Starbucks and look out the window across the street at guess what... Another Starbucks!

Just curious, this Starbucks doesn't contain remarkably similar looking people to the one you are currently in?

Re:Mirror?!? (2, Interesting)

JustOK (667959) | more than 9 years ago | (#12268378)

Tim Hortons is better in every way.

Re:Fifteen years is nothing.... (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12268374)

Thank you Lewis Black...

Re:Headline is wrong (4, Funny)

eclectro (227083) | more than 9 years ago | (#12268358)

No, it should say;

Gas prices take off, flying cars left behind.

Re:Headline is wrong (2, Insightful)

gl4ss (559668) | more than 9 years ago | (#12268381)

what would you do with a flying car?

kit-planes are already cheap and pretty as much usable as "flying cars" would be in the next 50+ years anyways..

Skycar (5, Informative)

dsginter (104154) | more than 9 years ago | (#12268209)

Moller Skycar Info [moller.com] .

Re:Skycar (3, Informative)

Gr8Apes (679165) | more than 9 years ago | (#12268334)

My problem with this one is that it was listed as a prototype, and the only one they had.

I recall reading about the Moller sky car in Popular Science years ago (5? 10? 15? it was a long time ago;) except then it was a 7 engine beast able to fly 400mph, get 20 mpg with 4 passenagers, along with VTOL. I guess that was merely a paper proposal, although it wasn't presented as such.

Re:Skycar (4, Informative)

Issue9mm (97360) | more than 9 years ago | (#12268432)

Mr. Moller's been building flying cars since forever ago. I saw his cameo on "Invent This!", and he had relatively working prototypes of various models of flying cars in the 60s and 70s.

Really, it's quite amazing what he's accomplished, and has to be the first to market on these things. I can only wonder why it's never "taken off" (pun only slightly intended.)

I want to say I've heard him mention that being the first to market on something so "seemingly" dangerous was his downfall, but I could be misquoting.

Interesting aside: Moller has acres and acres of pecan trees, which he eats as a staple of his diet, because he believes they slow the aging process (and he's quite old now indeed.)

-9mm-

Re:Skycar (2, Informative)

thisisauniqueid (825395) | more than 9 years ago | (#12268390)

I remember seeing an episode on "That's Incredible" in the 80s in which Moller was about to release this to the public, as the most earth-changing invention ever...

slashdotted already! (-1, Offtopic)

jrrl (635743) | more than 9 years ago | (#12268216)

Wonderful... new article, no comments, and it's already slashdotted. -John.

Re:slashdotted already! (2, Funny)

RealityMogul (663835) | more than 9 years ago | (#12268282)

Yeah, I know. If the guy was really so smart he should have invented a decent web server!

Just what the world needs (3, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12268217)

Each person having their own flying machine....can you imagine the waste of fossil fuels and danger involved? It's bad enough with cars!!

Re:Just what the world needs (3, Insightful)

age3.141592 (730565) | more than 9 years ago | (#12268265)

And people complain now about SUVs. This is just what we need, even less fuel efficient modes of transportation. These vehicles can represent a small niche market, but getting to a "highway in the sky"... forget-about-it

Re:Just what the world needs (2, Insightful)

ghoti (60903) | more than 9 years ago | (#12268279)

That's a very good point! I can only hope that parent will get modded up so that people actually get to see it ...

It's a bit like free love: sounds good in theory, but the STDs kill the fun even before you try it ... ;)

Re:Just what the world needs (3, Interesting)

Lumpy (12016) | more than 9 years ago | (#12268331)

you can get that now. it's called a private pilots license. unlike a drivers license it actually requires an IQ and SKILL to get and hold onto one. Hopefully in the future either a pilots license is required or they are automated so the braindead morons owning them will not be allowed to control it..

Personally, I have held my pilots license. I let it lapse cince family has taken precedence. but I remember that going from mid-michigan to chicago meigs was a super quick jaunt in that Piper Aero... having a quick lunch in downtown chicago between classes (2 hour break) was very doable when the school had their own grass airstrip.

Re:Just what the world needs (1)

Solder Fumes (797270) | more than 9 years ago | (#12268435)

Sounds about right: use two-hour jaunts to trendy downtown Chicago restaurants with yourself as the pilot to garner female companionship. Obviously it worked!

Re:Just what the world needs (2, Funny)

SpongeBobLinuxPants (840979) | more than 9 years ago | (#12268403)

All of them talking on their cell phones at the same time

Whenever they please? (5, Funny)

meringuoid (568297) | more than 9 years ago | (#12268222)

let millions of people fly whenever they please, and take off and land from wherever they please, in their very own vehicles

Homeland Security will have a fit!

Re:Whenever they please? (2, Insightful)

Mr.Dippy (613292) | more than 9 years ago | (#12268248)

Your basic Homosapien biped can barely handle vechicles that have 4 wheels and stay on the ground. I can't wait for these flying contraptions to hit buildings, fall out of the sky, and cause 80 flying car accidents 500 feet in the air. All because somebody spilled their coffee or were changing the radio station.

Re:Whenever they please? (1)

jackb_guppy (204733) | more than 9 years ago | (#12268256)

Than add the gas mileage issues...

So Homeland will kill by shutdown ANY alternive to gas.

Re:Whenever they please? (1)

Daengbo (523424) | more than 9 years ago | (#12268292)

That is a real concern, but I suspect that it will be the FAA which gets involved. They won't let millions of people take off and land wherever they please, and the chance that they'll allow it in the future is pretty slim.

Re:Whenever they please? (0)

HPNpilot (735362) | more than 9 years ago | (#12268363)

Local zoning is usually the issue. The FAA does not tell you whether or not you can have an "airfield."

/. dash (1)

holzp (87423) | more than 9 years ago | (#12268224)

Next on his list, the unslashdottable webserver!

Hoverboards... (5, Funny)

xyronix (254256) | more than 9 years ago | (#12268227)

I'm still waiting for my hoverboard...
Fooget Flyin Cars!

Hoverboards mathematically possible, anyway.. (1, Informative)

xtal (49134) | more than 9 years ago | (#12268286)

Check out this as a good starting point;

http://www.amazing1.com/grav.htm

There's some good stuff out there, and some people have gotten decent lift results with ion containment approaches.

Re:Hoverboards... (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12268398)

Wait no more! [futurehorizons.net]

This company also sells a flux capicitor [futurehorizons.net] for all your time travelling needs.

Just don't come crying to me if it doesn't work.

Let me be the first to say... (-1, Redundant)

metlin (258108) | more than 9 years ago | (#12268229)

...about bloody time!

public roads (4, Insightful)

FidelCatsro (861135) | more than 9 years ago | (#12268233)

Im fairly sure these device wont be valid road going vehicals for a while atleast.
I am wonder (fairly sure they will)if they will need to introduce a new license scheme for them and a whole new set of transit laws .
The potential problems that machines like this could cause is immense if this is not as tightly regulated as standerd aircraft not to mention the cross with auto mobiles

However if these things are avaliable for 50k from people like Mr Morris then I will definantly be rather tempted to get when if i ever have money like that laying around(Lets hope some unknown rich relative dies).

Re:public roads (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12268250)

Im fairly sure these device wont be valid road going vehicals for a while atleast.

Who cares?

They fucking fly.

Where they go, they have no need for roads.

Re:public roads (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12268254)

let me be the first to grammar troll myself , i hit save instead of preview "I am wondering " not to mention the rest... Fcat

Re:public roads (4, Insightful)

menace3society (768451) | more than 9 years ago | (#12268302)

They won't ever be "valid, road-going vehicles". They fly.

Re:public roads (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12268329)

metaphore

Re:public roads (0)

Zorilla (791636) | more than 9 years ago | (#12268348)

metaphor

Re:public roads (1)

grqb (410789) | more than 9 years ago | (#12268312)

Sure they're $50,000 but you'd be spending at least as much on the fuel even though oil has gone down in price a bit lately [thewatt.com] .

Re:public roads (1)

spottedkangaroo (451692) | more than 9 years ago | (#12268319)

introduce a new license scheme

Nope. No new pilot's license scheme will be required.

Re:public roads (2, Insightful)

FidelCatsro (861135) | more than 9 years ago | (#12268360)

I can't be 100% sure but i doubt these would fly in the same manner as standerd light aircraft , and if they are ment for the masses then .. well before we know we would have a rather cloged airspace and without tight controls that is a potential Disaster area , so some rather tight new license would be required

Re:public roads (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12268385)

I will definantly be rather tempted to get when if i ever have money like that laying around(Lets hope some unknown rich relative dies).

ROFL.. The only way a guy whose nick is "FidelCatsro" can imagine ever coming up with $50K is a rich relative dying.. ahh what rich sweet chocolaty irony.

Hey Fidel, ever heard of actually EARNING the things you want?

Re:public roads (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12268402)

oh right ,he forgot the dollar was down the toilet right now and $50k is worth about 20 pesso.

About time (1)

isotpist (857411) | more than 9 years ago | (#12268234)

I'm reminded that we were romised flying cars and video phones in the 21st Century every time I introduce a new person to video chat.

Re:About time (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12268293)

Be it a helicopter rotor blade, or an unprotected prop, let the Jack Newton awards begin. If every 100 hours require a complete strip-down plus flight taxes, this one is as dead as a dodo. This is why private light planes have been pushed to the edge.

big deal... simpsons already did it... (4, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12268240)

wonder if it looks like that hover car on the Simpsons last night... hmm...

Speeding ticket (3, Interesting)

superswede (729509) | more than 9 years ago | (#12268252)

So, will you get a speeding ticket flying 55mph on a 35mph road if you don't touch the ground?

Re:Speeding ticket (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12268296)

Indeed they will, notice also that current commercial airliners brake at "Give Way" signs, and how the pilots throw change out of their windows at toll booths.

All laws of the road need to be followed in the air.

Quickly . . . (3, Funny)

JJ (29711) | more than 9 years ago | (#12268267)

Buy one now before the air commute becomes congested as well.

Yup, flying cars/scooters available tomorrow. (1)

Colin Smith (2679) | more than 9 years ago | (#12268269)

Yeah, i'll sign up with my $50k today. Oh wait... You mean not *all* of the technology to do it is in place? I'm sure that's just a minor oversight and won't matter a jot. $50 grand cheque coming up.

The two reasons these didn't take off *ages* ago: (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12268270)

(1) the oil companies and car manufacturers like things the way they are.
(2) You need a PILOT'S LICENSE, not just a driver's license, to fly one of these things.

Re:The two reasons these didn't take off *ages* ag (2, Informative)

RichMeatyTaste (519596) | more than 9 years ago | (#12268287)

Did you read the article? Stay under 400 feet in non-restricted airspace = no pilots license

Re:The two reasons these didn't take off *ages* ag (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12268357)

a pilots license is not that hard to get, just most drivers are too stupid to pass the tests.

THANK GOD the pilots license is not given out like candy just like the drivers license.

400 feet but it goes to 10k! (3, Interesting)

garcia (6573) | more than 9 years ago | (#12268273)

Norris says you won't need a pilot's license if you fly it under 400 feet in non-restricted air space. And he's going to sell it for $50,000.

But the car will fly to 10k feet right and it will sell for $50k right? That means that a lot of idiots will be flying one of these things and they will have the ability to go over the 400 foot limit.

Looks like a serious issue.

Re:400 feet but it goes to 10k! (1)

Cthefuture (665326) | more than 9 years ago | (#12268321)

That's not the worst of it. Just think of all the obsticles at house?!

Re:400 feet but it goes to 10k! (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12268350)

You misspelled 'testicles'.

Re:400 feet but it goes to 10k! (1)

Mahou (873114) | more than 9 years ago | (#12268342)

people buy cars and motorcycles that can go like waayyy over the speed limit, it shouldn't be that much of a serious issue

Re:400 feet but it goes to 10k! (1)

geoffspear (692508) | more than 9 years ago | (#12268369)

So, do you advocate all cars being unable to accelerate beyond 65 miles per hour? Or all guns being able to sense if they're being used in self defense? How about MP3 players that can detect copyrighted music and refuse to play it? The lack of these features sounds like a "serious issue" to me.

Re:400 feet but it goes to 10k! (2, Insightful)

00squirrel (772984) | more than 9 years ago | (#12268405)

...fly it under 400 feet in non-restricted air space.

Flying at low altitudes (esp. less than 400 feet) is extremely dangerous, at least in conventional aircraft. This is known in pilotspeak as nap of the earth (NOE) flying. NOE flying is dangerous for a number of reasons. A couple of big ones are hitting objects like power lines, trees, towers, etc. Poor visibility can make this even more dangerous. Another reason is you have much, much less time to react if something goes wrong if you are flying close to the ground. It may seem counterintuitive, but the higher you fly, the safer you are.

bigger problems exist (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12268440)

You can already fly ultralights under 400 feet with no license.

I think a bigger problem would be now runnign out of gas means crashing instead of just blocking a lane of traffic.

I can see it now.

"75 dead as hover car runs out of gas and crashes 400 feet into local school."

Fuel Efficiency and Oil Dependence (0, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12268275)

How many equivalent 'passenger miles per gallon' will these get versus a car? While the "as a crow flies" distance may be shorter than driving, I can't imagine that the fuel usage is less than or 2x a car.

With gas refining capacity already strained, personal flying cars would be like taking one of the worst effects of SUV usage and mulplying that effect again.

Re:Fuel Efficiency and Oil Dependence (3, Interesting)

RichMeatyTaste (519596) | more than 9 years ago | (#12268306)

It depends on what you commute is like. If traffic and an out of the way route are part of your daily commute, it might be more efficient.

Needle hits E (2, Informative)

justforaday (560408) | more than 9 years ago | (#12268276)

I can't wait for the first accident report to come in because someone forget to fill it up...

Re:Needle hits E (1)

Zorilla (791636) | more than 9 years ago | (#12268327)

I can't wait for the accident reports caused by rotary engine failure. There's a reason most general aviation uses piston engines.

(Assuming things are even half as bad as they were back when my brother owned an RX-7)

Energy requirements (5, Insightful)

grqb (410789) | more than 9 years ago | (#12268278)

Damn...and I thought people were finally getting the idea that we have to conserve energy. Imagine how much oil/jet fuel that flying car would go through? It has four sets of rotary engines! I'd much rather see people driving an electric vehicle like this Reva NXG that can go 200km after a 6 hour charge [thewatt.com] .

Re:Energy requirements (2, Insightful)

Zorilla (791636) | more than 9 years ago | (#12268310)

It could very well be more efficient for long distances if there could be a way to have it extend wings so all engine power can be directed to the rear in level flight.

Re:Energy requirements (2, Interesting)

grqb (410789) | more than 9 years ago | (#12268392)

I don't know much about how that flying car works but if you consider the engine, it's limited by the carnot efficiency (sure carnot can get pretty big theoretical efficiencies at say, 900C) but I'd have to think that a car running off of a battery would be more efficient since the engine is MUCH smaller (I mean, that flying vehicle would need an engine much larger than any SUV on the road today) and batteries are not limited by carnot and could probably get maybe 40-50% efficiency.


If the flying car was a glyder, then maybe it would be comparable but it probably wouldn't go 300mph. Actually, if the flying car had a micro-turbine then perhaps, but still, it would use a lot of fuel.

Re:Energy requirements (2, Insightful)

kureido (830125) | more than 9 years ago | (#12268414)

It's stated on Moller's website [moller.com] that the Moller Skycar, linked above and also featured in the article, that it can "achieve up to 28 miles per gallon." That's better than I'm getting.

Yeah, but.... (5, Funny)

dcigary (221160) | more than 9 years ago | (#12268285)

....can it fold up into a briefcase after you land at work?

yeah Yeah, anyrthing but PR buzz? (3, Insightful)

Lumpy (12016) | more than 9 years ago | (#12268291)

He does a good job at getting the press attention every year or so yet no real advances are made. the Moller skycar is still the same point it was 5 years ago. he still has not flown it (tied to a crane is not flying it) or anything else other than his PR stunt shows.

Lots of promises are made but nothing solid or real is ever shown or demonstrated, it always feels like the snake oil or perpetual energy people. Look at what I did! no you cant see how it works or it actually work in real tests.

how about he untether it and fly it across the country? Experimental aircraft licensing is really easy to get.

A bit late (2, Funny)

fizban (58094) | more than 9 years ago | (#12268294)

Hey, timothy, get your act together! April 1st was two weeks ago!

Sheesh... Flying cars... As if...

I for one... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12268295)

... welcome our new, Skynet(r) Compliant Overlords!

submitter should RTFA :) (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12268297)

The CBS news article has images and a video clip of Paul Moller's skycar NOT the airscooter, and this seems more to be a small aeroplane not a flying car in any sense of the term. I want my flying cars to look like cars (preferably a delorean) which take off akin to that in Back to the future II (vertically) like a harrier jumpjet, propellars are for planes!!

I like the idea that flying cars might soon be a reality because software has been written to keep track of everyones self made vehicles. I have just finished writting a system to keep track of timetravellers. Name, address, year travelled back or forward to and what event they hope to see. I can only see CBS news declaring that time travel is now taking off too! :)

/.ed (1)

SolitaryMan (538416) | more than 9 years ago | (#12268300)

Cached [mirrordot.org] version.

I'm surprised these haven't happened sooner. (2, Funny)

91degrees (207121) | more than 9 years ago | (#12268304)

Hover technology has been around for over a decade. The basic principle was used for the hoverboards in Back To the Future, but unforunately the hoverboards were not made avaialable because of safety concerns.

But still - The technology is there. It shouldn't require a lot of extra work to have these hovering much higher. I'm surprised there isn't more inniovation in this area. I suspect that the rubber manufacturers have been suppressing the technology, because they know it will put an end to their business.

Re:I'm surprised these haven't happened sooner. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12268377)

did you see the mythbusters episode where they used vacuum cleaner motors to try and create personal hovercraft(later changing the motors for leafblower engines)

Re:I'm surprised these haven't happened sooner. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#12268399)

Ah, that's pure gold. You are joking, right? The hoverboards in BTTF are pure works of fiction, they are not based on any existing technology. You didn't RTFA, did you?

Re:I'm surprised these haven't happened sooner. (1)

deimtee (762122) | more than 9 years ago | (#12268408)

Actually one of the main problems with hover technology is trying to turn corners. You can rotate the device about the Y-axis, but due to inertia it just keeps going in a straight line, only now you're going sideways. With the small hoverboards you could tilt them to introduce lateral forces in order to corner, but the amount of tilt needed isn't feasible for a full size car.

Re:I'm surprised these haven't happened sooner. (1)

Eclypser (618863) | more than 9 years ago | (#12268424)

My friend tried to sell me that same load of crap years ago that the hover boards were possible. If they actually existed and safety was the only concern, then you would see this technology being used in warehouses for transporting goods.

Yeah, but.... (-1, Redundant)

dcigary (221160) | more than 9 years ago | (#12268305)

...can it fold up into a briefcase after you land at work??

Re:Yeah, but.... (1)

phirzcol (447454) | more than 9 years ago | (#12268341)

how big is your briefcase?

Does anyone else not like the end of this sentence (1)

jlmcgraw (140716) | more than 9 years ago | (#12268316)

"Look how quickly it stops, hovers, sideways, sideways, straight down," Norris tells Simon.

Idea good, math not so good... (5, Funny)

DrWhizBang (5333) | more than 9 years ago | (#12268328)

From TFA

"...But if we sold say a couple thousand, $50,000 a piece, that's a billion dollars."

If that's how this guy does math, I think I'll wait for some other manufacturer to create these things before I buy...

Hiller XH-44 clone (2, Interesting)

heli_flyer (614850) | more than 9 years ago | (#12268336)

Why'd they give him an award for that? It's a virtual copy of the Hiller XH-44 invented in 1944...that's sixty years ago. http://www.hiller.org/hillerXH44.shtml Someone needs to get a clue.

Can't help wondering... (1)

Eyeball97 (816684) | more than 9 years ago | (#12268337)

What happens to passports and international borders if (when?) "personal" flying machines ever take off (pun intended)...

Makes borders somewhat obsolete...

Making it safe (2, Insightful)

nxtr (813179) | more than 9 years ago | (#12268339)

Everybody assumes that everybody will start flying these things as soon as they will hit the market. That's scary.

The only way I see these things being actually safe for use is if the license can only be gotten through intensive training, akin to a private pilot certificate. Pilot training is expensive, but maybe it'll come down in price as methods of effective mass teaching are invented.

Flying Cars? Bah! (2, Funny)

j0e_average (611151) | more than 9 years ago | (#12268361)

I'm just looking for a webserver that can withstand 50 minutes of Slashdotting!

Cheap way to get one (5, Funny)

aapold (753705) | more than 9 years ago | (#12268362)

Buy a piece of land. And wait.

Yeah, right (2, Funny)

JoeD (12073) | more than 9 years ago | (#12268370)

As though idiots on cell phones weren't bad enough on the ground...

Public transportation (1)

Reignking (832642) | more than 9 years ago | (#12268376)

It sounds like a good alternative for public transportation. You wouldn't want some 16-year-old zit-faced teenager flying you around in a helicopter, would you?

55 Knots (1)

unique alias (862076) | more than 9 years ago | (#12268394)

Not 55 MPH, according to the page http://www.airscooter.com/pages/airscooter_main.ht m That equates to about 63 MPH.

Deja vu again (0)

baomike (143457) | more than 9 years ago | (#12268407)

Sounds like someone rewrote a Mechanics Illustrated
article from the late 40's or early 50's.

Homeland security ? (1)

AwaxSlashdot (600672) | more than 9 years ago | (#12268410)

Will FBI let people fly those freely around ?

uh oh (1)

phoenix42 (263805) | more than 9 years ago | (#12268413)

what happens when you run out of gas at 2500 feet?

Obvious, but should be said. (3, Insightful)

guido1 (108876) | more than 9 years ago | (#12268415)

About this "car".

It's a one seater.
The driver/pilot position is open to the elements.
It has no cargo carrying capacity (as far as I could tell.)
Max speed 55mph, 2 hours of flight per tank.
Skids only (no wheels), so you can't park it in a ramp/underground garage, so can't fly it to the city...

Cool toy? H3ll yeah. If I ever win the lottery (unlikely, as I don't play it) I'll be all over one of these. Replacement for a car? Bah.

I can just see the advertising campaign (2, Funny)

Colin Smith (2679) | more than 9 years ago | (#12268418)

Having looked at the thing I recommend the following:

"AirScooter, the Segway of the air!"

Sound projection device. (4, Interesting)

Bnderan (801928) | more than 9 years ago | (#12268420)

Woody Norris' company invented a device to aim sound, something like a laser does light. There was a good article in the NY Times about it a couple years back. This Popular Science article appears to cover it as well. http://www.popsci.com/popsci/bown/article/0,16106, 388134,00.html [popsci.com]

ya but... (1)

SpongeBobLinuxPants (840979) | more than 9 years ago | (#12268422)

does it fold up into a briefcase? Otherwise, I'm not interested.

Honey, let's take the flying car down to Wal-Mart (1)

newrisejohn (517586) | more than 9 years ago | (#12268441)

And we thought suburban sprawl was bad before.

Now people will move farther and farther away from civilization to waste their weekdays in traffic on the skyway [imdb.com] and waste their weekends looking for their lost hover car on the tarmac at Wal-Mart.

What about uncommanded rolls? (3, Insightful)

jerryasher (151512) | more than 9 years ago | (#12268445)

Looking at the AirScooter video, and at thinking about the motorcycle handle and the lack of foot pedals, how does the pilot correct for uncommanded roll, as might occur in turbulence, or thermals, encountering wake turbulence, ...?
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