> its just very interesting that electric powered vehicles dont produce
> any smoke around it , but a lot of it and other damages on the origin
> where that electricity is produced ( nuclear , gas , coal ,
> hydroeletric , whatever )
> You can never escape the consequences, there´s really no miracle
Sure you can. Just walk. The fuel needed can, if necessary, be
produced by illiterates using nothing more than wooden tools, water, and
dirt, for as long as the sun shines.
I don't see Segway-type vehicles as taking off in a general way, though
I am certain they will, contrary to the inventor's desires, have a huge
run as recreational devices and occasional youth transport. There are
several impediments to wide acceptance that I see (some of which other
listmembers have already mentioned):
1) No weather protection.
2) No, or limited, cargo capacity--probably less than that of a
well-configured bicycle (I've often carried sixty pounds or up to three
full grocery bags on mine, without trailer).
3) You have to stand on it. Standing without moving much is very
uncomfortable. If you're not going to be walking, you're better off
sitting. Especially true for older people. The legs are part of the
circulatory system. I doubt the Segway will provide the proper degree
of leg motion required for health as well as comfort.
4) Needs both hands to operate it but, again, has no racks or other
carrying devices (and I don't see quite how one would practically attach
such a thing to it).
5) With a 12mph capacity, it should, and probably will, be assigned to
street use, which means mixing with the cars it won't replace. Means it
will engender the same objections that street bicycling does among the
6) No status. Especially if it debuts as a postal worker and
warehouse vehicle. It will be seen as a utility device for hourly
workers, somewhat akin to a forklift, or as a toy for teens. I doubt
you'll see many suits commuting to work on it. A huge part of the
appeal of cars is the aura of power and status they confer. My friends
usually choose cars according to the impression they'll make on their
friends and colleagues, and the general public. Something that looks
like a push mower that you stand on, and that the postman uses to haul
around the mail, won't impress the Rolex crowd.
Besides, it's just more than we need. It facilitates, as some have
pointed out on this list, a smaller scale of sprawl. It allows
destinations to spread apart beyond walking distance. Its speed
sequesters the user from his fellows in the streets (as does that of a
bicycle). Sometimes you need such a thing, but not one that will
replace the healthy and social practice of walking rather than the
altogether dismal one of driving.
Has its uses here and there but I am neither optimistic nor
enthusiastic. Would rather build our cities around metros and walking,
with bikes as an adjunct and cars relegated to the 'tweenlands.
"Hope cannot be said to exist, nor can it be said not to exist. It is
just like the roads across the earth. For actually there were no roads
to begin with, but when many people pass one way a road is made."