After a few years of wishin’-and-hopin’, finally got a chance to spend quality time on a Segway today. Had a few hours before SXSW conference stuff began and took the opp to do what I wanted to do last year but couldn’t find time for – a six-mile Segway tour of Austin, TX with Seg City. Got super lucky and was the only one on the tour, which gave the guide and me more flexibility to go wherever.
Was amazed at how easy it was to ride. Absolutely intuitive — seems to read your body’s mind, if that makes any sense. The sensation is what I imagine hang gliding must be like – effortless and free and silent, as if you were born with wings and wheels. Was totally comfortable on it in under five minutes. Totally addictive.
The distance I live from work would make for an ideal Segway commute. Unfortunately, the infernal things still cost more on the used market than most people would be willing to pay new (think “as much as a decent used car”), which slows adoption and leaves them in the realm of the novelty. High cost of R&D and a bazillion patents supposedly to blame for the high price. Shame too. After you’ve ridden one for a while, it becomes easy to see why inventor Dean Kamen thought the device would “revolutionize urban planning.” But stupid reality got in the way.
Forgot to bring a CF reader with me; will try and get pix up before week’s end.