A new product

Some of you may have recently heard about this amazing secret invention that
will supposedly change the world. I’m sure this is already hype for the
product…at the end, you’ll know why I’m sending this. Some of you may have a
photo of this.

Uni-versally yours, Unicycle Lady http://users.aol.com/unilady/ “A Smile is A
Wondrous Thing”


‘Ginger’ more important than the Web? By Eric Auchard, Reuters January 12, 2001
4:35 AM PT

NEW YORK – A planned book about a mysterious invention said to be more
important than the World Wide Web and capable of generating fantastic riches has
gripped a down-on-its-luck technology industry in need of a miracle.

Harvard Business School Press is said to have paid $250,000 for a book detailing
“IT,” a device code-named “Ginger” that is set to be unveiled next year by
millionaire inventor Dean Kamen.

In a statement issued Thursday, Kamen, 49, declined to reveal much on the device
other than saying: ``While our projects are in the development phase and have
client confidentiality requirements, it is impossible for us to comment
further.’’

Details of the machine are contained in a book proposal by journalist Steve
Kemper, a freelance writer for publications such as Smithsonian, a popular
scientific magazine for which the author profiled Kamen in 1994.

Easy to assemble

Inside.com, the Web site of the recently launched media gossip magazine, was
first to report the story on Tuesday.

Much of what is known about Ginger is what it’s not.

The invention is said to take just 10 minutes to assemble using simple tools.
Ginger machines may cost less than $2,000 a piece when they debut in 2002,
Inside.com said.

With headlines bristling with news of the end of the personal computer era and
the destruction of many dotcom businesses, the technology industry has redoubled
its irrepressible search for the next big thing.

Technology leaders like as Apple Computer co-founder Steve Jobs, Amazon.com
founder Jeff Bezos and top venture capitalist John Doerr are said to have been
enthralled by a demonstration of a prototype device and to have invested
millions of dollars.

Investment bank Credit Suisse First Boston expects that IT can generate more in
its first year than any start-up ever, which would make Kamen richer than Bill
Gates within five years, according to details of the proposal reported by
Inside.com.

Jobs reportedly predicts cities will be built around the machines. Bezos calls
the product ``revolutionary’’. Kamen claims it will transform social
institutions and shake billion-dollar companies. None of those involved,
including the publisher, the literary agent or the backers, would comment on
the story.

Reputable inventor

Kamen, who lives in a house of his own design perched on a hill outside of
Manchester, New Hampshire, invented the first portable insulin pump in the
1970s.

For 20 years, Kamen has been at work creating several innovative healthcare and
technology products at DEKA Research and Development Corp. in Manchester. The
secretive company has more than 150 employees, a spokeswoman said.

``We are proud of our record of introducing many breakthrough products and we
continue to work on numerous products at any given time,’’ Kamen said in a
statement issued in response to the attention generated by the book offer.

Among his Kamen’s recent inventions was a wheelchair capable of climbing stairs.
He organizes a high school robotic invention competition that attracts more than
10,000 student participants each April to Walt Disney World’s Epcot Center.

Kamen was named for a National Medal of Technology award by the White House in
November for his invention of the insulin pump, joining the inventors of fiber
optic cable, the computer pointing device and data storage equipment.

      • What is Ginger? Dean Kamen applied for a patent on his invention, and the
        application is available on the web. I looked at it today.

Ginger is an electric scooter, used in the standing position. It could use two
wheels or even one wheel, or a “uniball” – like a mouse ball. There is a
version with several wheels that could climb stairs (Kamen already invented a
stair climbing wheelchair).

Some versions are very similar to a rolabola! Apparently it requires no effort
to balance on it, thanks to some complex physics and engineering.

The motor uses a control loop that adjusts its position so that you can’t fall
off of it. Some versions have a handlebar, others do not. Jump on and go like
a skateboard! It has a “kickstand” mode where it just stands there and
balances itself.

Has the unicycle been reinvented?

RE: A new product

Greetings all

The first message bounced, so here goes again.

I had the pleasure of seeing the wheel chair that Mr. Dean Kamen invented. In a
word, amazing!! I went to see a wheel chair that could climb stairs, which it
did with no effort then once on stage, Mr. Kamen commented on the fact that the
podium was to high for a disabled person. Going on to say that in a normal wheel
chair this would be a problem. So he drives the chair to center stage pushes a
few buttons on the joystick and the wheel chair STANDS UP. The wheel chair
actually stood up on two wheels and balanced itself. For the rest of his speech
he sat in that wheel chair, with it on two wheels, he would rock the chair, jump
in the seat, nothing, the wheel chair would correct its center of gravity to
compensate. At one point he even asked a fellow in the audience to try to tip
him over. The wheel chair won that shoving match! He showed a film of the
testing of the chair, a lady who had been confined to a chair after an
automobile accident, took the chair out for a test. She was able to reach items
on the top shelf of the grocery store, climb stairs, drive on the beach!!. Most
of all she stood the wheel chair up and hugged her mom. Not a dry eye in the
whole audience.

If Mr. Kamen says he is causing a transportation revolution believe him.

Joe West

P.S. Some of you may remember the adjustable cranks, I showed at NUC. Well I
have a new prototype ready by the beginning of Feb. I took the transmission
one step further and made an electric uni. Much to my chagrin my unistick
and Mr. Kamens’s Ginger have a lot in common. except the unistick is murder
to balance on :slight_smile:

Thanks for the help, with the post, Ken.

Re: A new product

Unilady@aol.com wrote:
>
> Some versions are very similar to a rolabola! Apparently it requires no effort
> to balance on it, thanks to some complex physics and engineering.
>
> The motor uses a control loop that adjusts its position so that you can’t fall
> off of it. Some versions have a handlebar, others do not. Jump on and go like
> a skateboard! It has a “kickstand” mode where it just stands there and
> balances itself.
>
> Has the unicycle been reinvented?

The competitors product: :slight_smile: http://www.gilby.com/unicycling/AutoBalance.html

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RE: A new product

I’m all in favor of new ideas. But hoaxes and hype can be easy to spot if you
look for the telltale clues:

> The invention is said to take just 10 minutes to assemble using simple tools.
> Ginger machines may cost less than $2,000 a piece when they debut in 2002,
> Inside.com said.

An invention that has an assembly time but no details about what it is has
definite problems. I believe this information “leak” was an intentional ploy to
generate publicity, though not necessarily in favor of the inventor. A look at
Inside.com today reveals this article:
http://www.Inside.com/jcs/Story?article_id=20834&pod_id=8

> Investment bank Credit Suisse First Boston expects that IT can generate more
> in its first year than any start-up ever, which would make Kamen richer than
> Bill Gates within five years, according to details of the proposal reported by
> Inside.com.

Whenever Bill Gates is mentioned, it kind of cements the fact that the
information is bogus or at least incomplete. Can a scooter, or even the
technology behind it, generate more income in five years than Microsoft has in
its entire history?

> Among his Kamen’s recent inventions was a wheelchair capable of
> climbing stairs.

This invention is real. I saw it on TV and was fascinated. It has for wheels of
equal size, and the wheel mechanisms on each side can rotate, lifting the chair
up onto its rear wheels while staying upright. It can then be rolled around in
this position, which I saw on the show (possibly Modern Marvels or another
show). The technology used to keep the occupant safely balanced is fascinating,
and I can’t wait to see “fun” applications of it.

I will wait for more information about products we can actually buy someday…

Still hoping for a motorized unicycle, John Foss, the Uni-Cyclone
jfoss@unicycling.com www.unicycling.com

“Our time is a most precious commodity, but it’s how we spend it that makes us
rich.” - John Foss