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Unread 07-31-2004, 12:20 PM
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Re: So YOU Think You Have a Modded Segway?

Quote:
Originally Posted by M. Krass
The unfortunate thing, as if it's not entirely obvious, is that this Segway is a toy to show off. It's not being used at all for its intended purpose, nor is its owner doing anything to encourage the redesign of cities or the protection of the environment.

The picture doesn't make this clear, but the Segway rides on a trailer attached to an enormous, yellow Hummer. Whoever owns it drives it into the city each day behind their enormous gas guzzling monstrosity and, as far as I've seen, doesn't bother to actually ride the Segway anywhere.

Oh well.
Yes, it's unfortuante, but what's going to stop people like that? I guess nothing....
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Unread 07-31-2004, 01:38 PM
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Re: So YOU Think You Have a Modded Segway?

As of now you can not touch any of the programming inside the segway.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Lisa Perez
Did they have to modify the programming for the gyro and such and such?
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Unread 07-31-2004, 01:41 PM
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Re: So YOU Think You Have a Modded Segway?

Quote:
Originally Posted by M. Krass
The picture doesn't make this clear, but the Segway rides on a trailer attached to an enormous, yellow Hummer. Whoever owns it drives it into the city each day behind their enormous gas guzzling monstrosity and, as far as I've seen, doesn't bother to actually ride the Segway anywhere.

Oh well.
Well, going by the website below the segway:

They RENT them for special occasions apparently.

So, it seems they do get used, just maybe not by this person.
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Unread 07-31-2004, 02:05 PM
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Re: So YOU Think You Have a Modded Segway?

Quote:
Originally Posted by M. Krass
The unfortunate thing, as if it's not entirely obvious, is that this Segway is a toy to show off. It's not being used at all for its intended purpose, nor is its owner doing anything to encourage the redesign of cities or the protection of the environment.

The picture doesn't make this clear, but the Segway rides on a trailer attached to an enormous, yellow Hummer. Whoever owns it drives it into the city each day behind their enormous gas guzzling monstrosity and, as far as I've seen, doesn't bother to actually ride the Segway anywhere.

Oh well.
I didn't really know people thought of the Segway as such an environmentally friendly invention. Though I don't have precise figures, the premium that a hybrid car has over a similar performing regular car is almost definitely less than the price of a Segway. Considering Segways can not replace cars for a large amount of people, a car and it makes much more sense to just buy an environmentally friendly car. Additionally, if hybrids become as widespread as Segways would need to be to have an effect on the environment, hybrids would be able to be even more helpful to the environment by making selling power back to the power grid useful. This could significantly increase efficiency of power plants by not requiring them to have the capacity for greater power output than needed.

Of course hybrids are only a temporary solution, oil will run out regardless. Fuel cells or something else must be brought to a usable level of efficiency within the next 25 years or so. The point is that a Segway isn't going to realistically replace cars in a country like the US.
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Unread 07-31-2004, 02:19 PM
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Re: So YOU Think You Have a Modded Segway?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Max Lobovsky
The point is that a Segway isn't going to realistically replace cars in a country like the US.
It has replaced at least 2 car trips a day for me adding up to more than 12 miles a day (and that is just back and forth to work- nevermind about other trips)
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Unread 07-31-2004, 10:49 PM
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Re: So YOU Think You Have a Modded Segway?

Quote:
Originally Posted by M. Krass
The picture doesn't make this clear, but the Segway rides on a trailer attached to an enormous, yellow Hummer. Whoever owns it drives it into the city each day behind their enormous gas guzzling monstrosity and, as far as I've seen, doesn't bother to actually ride the Segway anywhere.
Dean Kamen also drives a huge gas guzzling hummer to work everyday... except his is black and thats when he's not flying into work on his helicopter. He really wants to save the environment...huh?
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Unread 07-31-2004, 10:52 PM
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Re: So YOU Think You Have a Modded Segway?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Pamela
Dean Kamen also drives a huge gas guzzling hummer to work everyday... except his is black and thats when he's not flying into work on his helicopter. He really wants to save the environment...huh?
Pam shouldn't you be taking pictures of baby dolls!?!!? And I have not seen dean fly in one day this summer. But yes he does drive a huge Hummer that gets about 6mpgs
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Unread 08-01-2004, 08:12 AM
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Re: So YOU Think You Have a Modded Segway?

Coming to MTV this fall: Pimp my Segway
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Unread 08-01-2004, 03:56 PM
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Re: So YOU Think You Have a Modded Segway?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Francis-134
Coming to MTV this fall: Pimp my Segway
you really dont need to do anything to a segway, they're cool as they are , and also i dont think there are enuf old or just plain UGLY segways to actually start a tv show on
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Unread 08-01-2004, 08:13 PM
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Re: So YOU Think You Have a Modded Segway?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Max Lobovsky
I didn't really know people thought of the Segway as such an environmentally friendly invention. Though I don't have precise figures, the premium that a hybrid car has over a similar performing regular car is almost definitely less than the price of a Segway. Considering Segways can not replace cars for a large amount of people, a car and it makes much more sense to just buy an environmentally friendly car. Additionally, if hybrids become as widespread as Segways would need to be to have an effect on the environment, hybrids would be able to be even more helpful to the environment by making selling power back to the power grid useful. This could significantly increase efficiency of power plants by not requiring them to have the capacity for greater power output than needed.
Efficient personal transport embraced by the population will lead to the redesign of cities, eliminating the need for roads and automobiles altogether when traveling short distances. The Segway HT isn't the answer, it's the first step.

No car at all is far better than a hybrid, isn't it?
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Unread 08-01-2004, 08:31 PM
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Re: So YOU Think You Have a Modded Segway?

Quote:
Originally Posted by M. Krass
Efficient personal transport embraced by the population will lead to the redesign of cities, eliminating the need for roads and automobiles altogether when traveling short distances. The Segway HT isn't the answer, it's the first step.

No car at all is far better than a hybrid, isn't it?
That depends.

If it's a good day outside and I'm just going around with a couple of books in my backpack (although that combination would most likely be more than the advertised limit of 250 lbs), then sure, I'll take a Segway.

But if the weather is lame, we had a power outage, I've got to haul something that requires a hand, or it's just too much stuff to worry about moving it and keeping me from falling onto the pavement, then I'm going to have to drive a hybrid...or in the meantime, my CR-V. (You know, the CR-V is based off of the Civic platform (which has a hybrid), with plenty of under-the-rear-cargo-area storage where a spare tire would be (but is mounted to the back of the car)...so why isn't there a CR-V hybrid?!)

Personal transportation to me often means more than just transporting the person...therein lies the problem of a Segway. (That, and the lack of a cupholder.)
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Unread 08-01-2004, 10:24 PM
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Re: So YOU Think You Have a Modded Segway?

Right, I agree with Billfred. It is unlikely that cars can come even close to being totally replaced in the US. You might argue that public transportation can solve the problems Billfred stated, but that is unlikely with the relatively low population density (compared to Europe, for example, which is supposed to be leading the world in public transportation but still has great amounts of cars). But most importantly, more so than any other country Americans value their independence. A car, though it might be wasteful for the majority of the time, lets a person really go anywhere, anytime.
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Unread 08-01-2004, 10:36 PM
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Re: So YOU Think You Have a Modded Segway?

Quote:
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A car, though it might be wasteful for the majority of the time, lets a person really go anywhere, anytime...
... screwing their fellow man over



Now watch this drive!
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Unread 08-02-2004, 12:54 AM
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Re: So YOU Think You Have a Modded Segway?

The evolution of the design of cities is a fun subject to study. Urban planners have, for centuries, sought to develop city plans that are at the same time efficient and entertaining, beautiful and bustling, clean and convenient. each feature different iterations of city designs and each has had unique problems in In these evolutions, a number of different strategies have been used to achieve those goals and all have been met only with mixed successes. London, Barcelona, and New York represent different iterations in the history of city design.

No change has had a greater impact upon cities in the last century than the advent of the automobile and the middle class exodus to the suburbs. The independence offered by the car coupled with the still increasing recreational time available to the middle class decimated American narratives of previous decades that told of cohesive neighborhoods that could fulfill our every need. There was, however, one obstacle to suburban expansion and the automobile – roads.

Lack of infrastructure was truly the problem, insofar as there were roads in existence by the time of the middle class flight, but they couldn’t effectively handle the large increase of traffic that comes with commuting from the suburbs to jobs in the city. A dirt road that winds through the farm towns of Long Island was simply not enough to handle the flood of cars headed for the sandy beaches every weekend. Someone had to step in.

Enter Robert Moses. Moses was head of the Long Island State Parks Commission and responsible for, among other things, the New York World’s Fairs. A key part in bringing the Fairs to New York was improving the city’s infrastructure so that it could handle the crowds anticipated to attend; and I say anticipated only because the ’64 Fair was largely unsuccessful.

These events – providing access to Long Island parks and the World’s Fair – paved the way, forgive the phrase, for the birth of suburbia. It assured the dominance of the automobile in the American way of life.

The Federal-Aid Highway Act of 1956 (co-authored by Al Gore, Sr., father of Vice President Al Gore) funded the construction of our interstate highway systems, providing mainline, high speed access into and between major cities for automobiles – facilitating easier travel between these destinations and changing the ways we distribute freight and goods. It also put the last nail in the coffin of passenger rail travel in the United States and was the initiating factor in the demise of all but three freight-hauling railroads.

Tired of the history lesson? Well, I think it’s important that we have a reasonable understanding of what’s happened to get us to today so that we can best decide how to get where we’d like to be tomorrow.

Circa 1966, ten years after the Federal-Aid Highway Act, serious discussion about implementing an experimental city plan again began in earnest. Walt Disney’s EPCOT was conceived as a utopian community design that eliminated the need for automobiles for everyday use by ensuring that access to jobs, services and entertainment was convenient and reliable to everyone residing within the planned community. Of course, we’re all aware that Walt Disney’s vision died on December 15, 1966 with him. His company then envisioned Epcot as a permanent World’s Fair and another great experiment in urban planning was forever abandoned.

The Segway is, in my opinion, the opening shot in the next salvo of efforts to redesign our cities – to again attempt to correct the errors of the past. Where Robert Moses sought to build roadways upon roadways to keep up with the demand to use the automobile, modern planners seek to eliminate that demand altogether. Pollution and the upkeep of our environment is now a widespread, valid concern among those charged with establishing positive precedent for our future to draw upon. Therein, however, also lays the largest challenge to the Segway and its successors.

The people who do the most damage to the environment in the residential context are the people who seem most apt to criticize the Segway and the potential redesign of cities to accommodate it. People are unwilling to give up the perception of freedom that their automobiles offer in trade for a cleaner environment and that decision is crippling the planet and the potential devices, such as the Segway, have for effecting change. Better the devil you know than the devil you do not.

As use of the Segway increases – both due to greater availability and further market saturation through time – demand for its accommodation in cities will rise. It took nearly fifty years before our culture was sufficiently saturated by automobiles such that cities became acclimatized to their presence. The Segway HT has been available only moments by comparison, having debuted in late 2001. It is far too early to accurately predict what impact it may have in future years.

Furthermore, cars are not only problematic as pollutants, but also in that they occupy considerable space for the function they serve. The volume of an automobile is only useful as long as its carrying passengers or cargo. Seeking to minimize or eliminate such unused volume is attractive in urban planning because it benefits efforts to create more open spaces in urban areas with high population and infrastructure density. It is for this reason that we now encounter city improvements designed to remove these things from sight – underground utilities and even things such as Boston’s Big Dig being obvious examples.

The Segway is a solution to many of these problems, but it’s not perfect. It is without emissions and relatively compact and lightweight. It requires less space to operate because of both its size and its zero turning radius, and though its capacity is currently limited to one person, the overall volume of four Segways is still smaller than that of a compact car. It is still best suited for short trips in urban environments. It represents, at this point, only one link in the chain that can make transportation more efficient and environmentally friendly.

All of that having been said, it is clear that the Segway is nothing if not an environmentally friendly invention. It will not replace the automobile so much as it will render it obsolete. In the future, as cities change to accommodate a growing population of Segway and mass transit users, you will be unable to drive your car – whether it be a Hummer or a hybrid – into the heart of a city. Our avenues will be replaced by greenways; our highways by rail lines. Cities will change, just as they have time and time again. It is impossible to guess if those changes will result, finally, in the perfect utopia or if another series of problems will appear, with solutions to those problems causing yet another shift in how we view our interactions with the environment and with one another.
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Unread 08-02-2004, 02:31 AM
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Re: So YOU Think You Have a Modded Segway?

I think the real problem with the Segway is that it's a solution to a problem that doesn't exist. Sure it's a fun toy, but it's not practical. If you live in the extreme rural areas of the US there are literally miles seperating you from your destinations.

The big seller was supposed to be people in the city. I live in Boston and we have a decent public transportation system, as do most residential cities. I wouldn't take a Segway to class, it's a 5 minute walk. If I was going out for the night I would just take the T or bus (public transportation). Plus, there's the question about where to put your Segway and keep it secure. Do you think some bum or drunk idiot knows that the thing won't work with out that specific key? Of course not, it would be stolen. Unless you're going somehwere you know it will be secure, you better have good insurance on it.

The best applicant for a Segway is people who live in suburbs. When you want to go to a friends house or run down to the corner store. Basicly, when the distances are about 1 mile. Anything further and you'll probably take a car. If you can't afford a car, you certainly can't afford a segway.

The group of people who the Segway is best for is an extremely small percentage of the population. Teenagers who aren't old enough drive and parents are wealthy. Chief Delphi contest winners. The opulent who enjoy buying toys. People with revoked drivers licenses. Un-athletic police officers. On a serious note, US postal service employees in the suburbs or city.
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