Some students at MIT have developed a fold-up scooter for use primarily in cities in Asia, where car traffic is reaching staggering levels. According to a report in the New York Times, a scooter maker in Taiwan helped to underwrite the project. The students ame up with a silver, lightweight, easy-to-collapse scooter that could be driven from Point A to Point B, then easily warehoused.
"Their plan imagines a network of pickup and drop-off points for the scooters, which would fold to half their operating size. The scooters could then be stacked and recharged," the Times reports. "Computers would track scooter pickups and drop-offs to keep the system running smoothly. Each scooter would show its location with a built-in G.P.S. unit."
The scooters are indeed super cute, although I can't imagine people willingly giving up the cars they worked so hard for. Consumers don't always opt for the most convenient solution to a problem and, when it comes to computing, it seems that people are especially willing to make strange compromises, such as commuting three hours a day or taking a boat even when a train is faster.
What do you think? Is this device the next big thing--or a far cry from a beloved car?
Last updated: Dec 17, 2007
MIKE HOFMAN was previously editor of Inc.com and a deputy editor at Inc. magazine, which he joined in 1996. The site was nominated for a National Magazine Award for Digital Media in 2010, and was named the best business website by Folio Magazine. In 2006, Hofman was part of a team of writers nominated for a Webby Award for best business blog. He lives in New York City. @mikehofman