Whenever and wherever we go, we always feel that the people who go around on a scooter, a Segway or anything else that has wheels that are not a car or a bike are still immature, and very childish, simply because of their mode of transportation. Our minds are filled with contempt for these people as soon as we see their, dare I say, vehicle, and their seeming dependence on it. We tend to think of these people as children that didn’t grow up, and thus that have maturity, and the intellect of just that – a child.
On the other hand, we sometimes think of these people as nerds and hipsters, who just try their hardest to get some attention by using a non-conventional mode of transport, and we thus perceive them as shallow. Either way round, we do not think of the people who use these vehicles in a good way, not by any stretch of imagination. This especially applies to anyone whose mode of transport costs a lot of money or seems to at least. This can include anyone, from people with fancy new electric bike with those advertised carbon frames that cost as much as a lower-middle end car (although they are likely just to be a knock – off) to people who make their daily commute on roller blades of all things. Such modes of transportation are:
Rollerblade, Segways, and Scooters
Rollerblades, Segways, and scooters are great to take with you on public transport, but when you are a pedestrian they are very scary (especially if it’s the roller blades or the scooter) – as the person has next to no braking ability, especially downhill. Combine this with their little rolling resistance and you get a person flying down to you at a huge speed. To us, normal humans, these people seem just to try and go for something expensive and useless, to impress (but mostly annoy) the plebs that go around on foot, bike or via car with their fancy Segway, roller blades and especially scooters that make every adult look like a man-child with the aid of a (generally neon colored) helmet that is just too easily associated with 5-year-olds.
We tend to look at these people and wonder, why on earth do they drive such silly, inefficient and overall weird modes of transport that could just as well be replaced by a normal, cheap and overall acceptable and respectable bike – all while not wasting tons of money (We are looking at you Segway and Unicycles). These people who just have to do this always try to push through the crowds, or occupy lanes on the road, or otherwise make life much more difficult for us, simply to satisfy themselves, and look ‘cool’ and ‘edgy’, despite these modes of transport making almost everyone either believe that the users of it are weird or get annoyed at them for trying (and failing) to be attention seekers.
Despite these significant popularity drawbacks, and the increased levels of theft among these unconventional modes of transportation, a clear trend seems to emerge – with this interesting tendency showing: as our cities grow and get filled up with traffic (especially various vehicle traffic), people started using more and more of public transport system, which, while slightly easing the congestion, gave us a large demand for personal transportation like bicycles and scooters, but despite this, sometimes there is simply a hill in the way, or too long of a walk, and a general ride. Whichever it is, it can be conveniently filled by electric transportation – which allows you to get up those pesky hills with a breeze, and get you to your destination without a sweat.
Basic modes of electric transportation
A whole lot of electric transportation devices are simply bikes or scooters with an electric motor attached, and allow you to add around 250W to your general output, which can get you up to speed. Despite these benefits, almost every electric bike or scooter, or even an obscure electric skateboard are definitely not crash-proof, and even a slightest knock can disturb the battery, which can lead to hazardous effects, such as a leak, which can lead to a fire in the worst case scenario.
The electrical modes of personal transport basically allow you to solve the problem of connection between rails buses and your destinations – which would otherwise have to be walked on foot. For example, a 2 mile distance (which is nothing for current electric bikes and scooters) can take an average human half an hour to forty minutes to walk, while with these new modes of transport it can take just over 10. These little pauses and gaps in our daily commutes is what increases dissatisfaction with public transport and often, especially when you are rushing, it can make you arrive with sweat pouring down, and still late (as you probably will not be able to run 15 miles an hour for the whole journey).
With all these difficulties, and the overall huge wastes of time that public transport gives you when you don’t live directly near a train or a bus station can push you to get a car, but cars are expensive, cost a lot to maintain and service, as well as are quite theft prone. Let us not forget about various traffic jams and the like that can slow you down quite a lot. Cars also need to be secured (which often draws even more money from your budget) and also requires a lot of practice to drive safely.
Alternative solutions to the last mile problem
A very common solution to this issue, often called the ‘Last mile problem’ is the classic, light, and cheap bicycle, but despite these redeeming qualities it has a set of very serious drawbacks, which are more and more challenging to manage in our busy lives that require a lot of time, and where every minute matters. Firstly, bikes are quite large, which automatically limits their usefulness in public transport (and especially buses) where you either have to secure it to the bus, or somehow fit inside the bus with your bike. This problem is becoming more and more prevalent, as more people flood into cities and more people use public transport, which is often full. This fullness of public transport makes it very challenging to accommodate oneself inside, and the rush during the peak hour makes the securing problematic. Due to its size, storing a bike can be impractical as well as really difficult, as most of us live in apartments, where space is an issue.
Folding bikes certainly do seem to mitigate these immediate problems; they have a set of drawbacks of their own:
- Firstly, they are not reliable, and can easily break from a simple collision or a fall, due to the nature of their frame where they fold. This joint is the weakest part of the bike, and thus a single tumble (if you drop your bike while walking) can be really bad for your bike.
- Secondly, they still have the same problems as every non-electrical mode of transportation has, from roller blades to scooters to skateboards to bikes – when you arrive somewhere, if there was a hill beforehand you are going to be incredibly sweaty, and there is nothing you can do about it. While this is OK if your code of dress is informal, but if you have to wear a shirt or a suit to work, this becomes a large problem.
- Finally, the folding bicycle , even while folded, still occupies a lot of room, which makes your daily commute during rush hour quite difficult, earning you some hostile stares from your fellow commuters, whose personal space you would be invading.
Ultimately, you would want to find something that makes your daily commute easy, without making you invade other people’s space, easy to store and overall make it easy to carry and store virtually anywhere, while, preferably, not making you look weird. These solutions are generally in a form of a skateboard or a scooter modified to include a motor and battery, with a remote controller that will allow you to accelerate and slow down at will. These various modes of transports save you from arriving to work sweaty and tired, even before any actual work began. Furthermore, they save our oh-so-precious time, which we just can’t get enough of. As well as the benefits above, electric vehicles can help people with various muscle and joint problem to get to their destinations without having to drive a car, or walk.
The ultimate solution – Boosted Dual
Arguably the best of such solutions is the Boosted Dual – an electric skateboard designed to fit elegantly into your backpack wherever you go.
- It accelerates up to 20 miles per hour (just a bit under Usain Bolt speed)
- Keep you moving even at a 20-degree incline! This allows you to get to your destination quickly and without the possibility of running late – as this will allow you just quickly to zoom to your destination without you even breaking a sweat. This incredibly futuristic and nearby magical invention is operated by a cylindrical shaped remote controller which will allow you to control acceleration.
- Weighing just 15 pounds, and under 40 inches long,
This device can be strapped onto any backpack, carried in public transport, be it train or a bus, and be safely stored inside your apartment or under your desk, unlike a bicycle that will need a whole lot more space. With this amazing skateboard, the only upgrade that you can get is the hover board from Back to the Future.
Despite all these excellent features, unless you have already done some skateboarding and are comfortable with gliding around the city on an unpowered version, this beast will make you very, and very scared, as you will easily get to the advertised 20 miles per hour, and the falls at this speed can be quite damaging. Coupled with this tremendous speed, turning (and especially sharp turns) are going to be nigh impossible unless you are a professional, as people tend to report only long, wide and nearly useless marks even when they learn with all their weight. If they learn more, they either lose balance, or the board does nothing.
However, this can be very dangerous when you are going downhill and hit an intersection. Coupled with these turning problems, the brakes are incredibly sharp on the Boosted Dual, and so if you switch your thumb at the wrong moment, expect to fly off the board with a potentially lethal outcome, as there is nothing to hold on to when you are breaking. This, coupled with the companies warning of ‘Remember that your board may lose power and brakes at any moment’ makes this board quite dangerous, and needing a significant amount of time getting used to before taking it round for a quick trip to work, least you can suffer a significant injury.
Despite the gloomy picture, all these dangers are known in the skateboarding world, a lot of armors is available to protect you from any and all of these impacts. The video about this board on the producers’ website shows us a very unrealistic situation, with a completely abandoned city with no traffic or lights, with riders able to make long and easy turns on empty streets, unlike our busy and mostly square streets in modern cities. The board in these conditions performs amazingly, with riders just zooming past you at breathtaking speeds with stunningly great moves.
After reading some reviews of this board, I have found that public agrees with this, and that the bard is amazing when it comes to long stretches of flat or uphill road, with little to no turns, and preferably no traffic too, as avoiding people is quite difficult, even with this invention. Thus, if your commute is through a mostly empty streets or parks, you will find this board to be perfectly matched for your needs, however, if you have to go through the CBD, or other similar locations with high amounts of traffic, using this board is not a devices, as it’s speed and bad maneuvering capabilities can put you into serious danger.
Overall, electric transport, especially in today’s highly congested cities is a must, but you should not forget that they reach speeds much higher than what we expect their non-powered counterparts to reach.