Working in Manhattan is not without its challenges. Having to circumnavigate the throngs of directionally challenged people is
a part-time job in itself. But, there is a certain zen to it all.
Looking around I can see so much technology used for both business and personal means. Cell phones, tablets, eReaders, and even selfie sticks (my favorite was when someone referred to them as the wand of narcissism). In recent weeks I have been seeing a rise in devices beyond that which fit in our pockets, devised used for transportation.
New Toys, Boldly Going Where Pedestrians Reign Supreme
Each year there is some new big product that everyone just HAS to have. New phone, computer, video game, etc. Whatever the item is, people will line up to purchase it.
The same is true for transportation. A much more narrow niche than the electronics community but still has a band of loyal followers.
Let’s take a look at some of the new personal vehicles that are available:
This company is great. I have been seeing a lot of their products around lately and have contemplated buying one of their products. The cost would pay for itself in less than five months if I could cancel my monthly subway ticket.
A unique spin on the scooter, this uni-wheeled device may take some getting used to but is compact enough to get you where you need to go without any hassle.
It’s self balancing and electric so that means safe and low cost to maintain & operate.
The distance is almost 10 miles on a single charge so that should be more than enough to get around the city in one day. My Fitbit says I average almost 5 miles a day so I don’t think I need to travel that far…but nice to know I would have the option to.
It’s like a cross between a Segway and a skateboard. The R2 has a sleek design and looks easy to operate.
Like the R1, the R2 is self balancing with two separate motors. It can travel roughly 14 miles on a single charge and just looks awesome! I mean, c’mon, it’s a sideways skateboard.
The previous devices are great because they offer little to no effort from the person operating them. The next one requires a little more work but is still a great item to own.
Other Means of Transportation
Yes, it’s a bicycle that folds up. How cool is that?! So incredibly convenient, especially in a city where we are limited on space. One of the more popular brands I’ve seen around the city is Dahon. It could be because of the lower price point but it actually has been getting great reviews.
Bicycles do require more effort to operate than electronic scooters that are self-propelled but a little exercise is good for you!
The bike folds in a few areas making it easy to transport on subways or commuter trains. Weighing in at 24lbs it may not be the lightest thing you carry on your commute but you can add the extra lifting to your AM workout.
These products are all available now but what about the future of travel? Where will personal commuting be in ten years? Let’s take a look at some proposed methods of travel in the near future.
The Future of Personal Transport
Depending on where you live in proximity to your job, travel may take up a lot of your time in the morning. Here are some theories on how we’ll be able to get to work in the morning from some futurists:
More so meant as a means to travel around large office spaces, the UNI-CUB by Honda is available today. I haven’t seen any of these on the streets of Manhattan yet but wouldn’t that be a unique spin on travel. The seat you get on the train doubles as your trasportation to the office an your office chair.
I want one. It’s that simple. I’m pretty sure this won’t be commercially available for a while and will require the user to have a pilot’s license but will be worth the wait.
The Terrafugia is both car and plane that convert to fit in your garage.
Imagine living in New York and working Boston. That’s typically a four hour drive but only a 29 minute flight.
Sure, they’ll be security concerns over this but once all the details are ironed out I’ll be excited to see this product roll out.
Escaping the realm of “personal transport,” the hyperloop looks to offer a high speed alternative to our current rail system here
in the United States.
Elon Muck’s spacex team is consulting on this project, which is designed to hold 4-5 passengers, and they have even begun construction of a test track.
The theoretical high-speed train will travel at 760 mph and will be able to get from San Francisco to Los Angeles in thirty minutes.
This is going to be a permanent fixture on my Christmas list until I get it. The Martin Jetpack is a futuristic means of travel that will no doubt leave you feeling like a superhero as you fly through the air.
With a max speed of 74mph at a height of 3,000ft, the Martin Jetpack offered 30 minutes of flight. With those speeds I could be at work in no time (weather providing).
This will be commercially available in 2017 and I can see this quickly becoming very popular. The price point is a little high but all the fun toys usually start out that way.
We’re all thinking it. Every since Back to the Future 2 we have all wanted a hoverboard and that time is almost here. While I’m not entirely sure of the logistics behind this, I know I want one and I’m not alone.
Lexus have allegedly created a hoverboard that we have been not so silently wanting since 1989.
I have a pretty strong feeling that there are going to be a large amount of middle aged men flocking to buy this as soon as it becomes available, I just hope everyone will has great health coverage prior to said purchase.
I intentionally left off any sea related tansport as I can’t imagine many commuters wanting to get wet before they start their day. I could be wrong and bring a change a clothes isn’t all that difficult; I may update this post at a later date with some developments on that front.
If you have tried or are looking to purcahse any of the items mentioned in this post I would love to hear from you. I’m currently eyeing the MonoRover R2 but not sure New York has the best climate for that year round.