Top 25 Inventions of 2006
March 22, 2006 8:47 PM   Subscribe

The Modern Marvels Invent Now Challenge named 25 finalists (selected from over 4,000 entries) in a competition to find the greatest invention of 2006. The winner will be named during History Channel's Great Inventions Week (May 24-27th), but you won't have to wait to check out the finalists. MAKE: Blog briefly profiled each invention in a series of posts this week: Part 1, Part 2, Part 3, Part 4, and Part 5. The inventions will also be on exhibit at the California Science Center in Los Angeles (April 7-15th), the Museum of Science and Industry in Chicago (April 20-30th), the Museum of Science in Boston (May 5-14th) and Vanderbilt Hall in Grand Central Terminal in New York City (May 22-27th), and finally, the National Inventors Hall of Fame in Akron, OH (through August 2006).
posted by paulychamp (10 comments total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
First post to the blue. Please be gentle.
posted by paulychamp at 8:48 PM on March 22, 2006

WAY better than American (re)Inventor
posted by ernie at 9:20 PM on March 22, 2006

My favorite is the Shift Bicycle from part 5, but there's a lot of cool ones. I wonder how they will judge.
posted by thirteenkiller at 9:22 PM on March 22, 2006

That's weird. I could have sworn that bike was posted to the blue in 2004.
posted by dobbs at 9:28 PM on March 22, 2006

Pauly, awesome. Thanks.
posted by dougunderscorenelso at 10:14 PM on March 22, 2006

I've seen that bike before... and I still don't get how the 2 rear wheels "become" one..? Any video clips?
posted by mhh5 at 1:01 AM on March 23, 2006

If I have to see that bike again I'm gonna puke. Nice computer generated mockup, but where is the prototype? It has been around for at least a year. What will this beast cost? Who is gonna buy this?
posted by fixedgear at 2:41 AM on March 23, 2006

I liked the floating arrow. Not very useful to most of us, but it has that geeky "neat" factor :)

For "useful to the rest of us" that Contour Clone patternmaker is a classic "Why did no one do that 100 years ago?!? Hell, why didn't I think of that?!" invention, so simply and brilliant it makes you kick yourself :)

A lot of the rest were not what I'd consider in the league of greatest inventions of the year.
posted by -harlequin- at 3:04 AM on March 23, 2006

Yeah, the arrow was pretty cool. It's a neat list, and admirably balanced between serious industrial inventions (the carbon, the bridge anchors, the bricks), and personal commercial inventions.
posted by OmieWise at 6:03 AM on March 23, 2006

I've seen that bike before... and I still don't get how the 2 rear wheels "become" one..?

I had this same thought last night. what I finally came up with is that the wheels will eventually meet at the bottom (when the bike speeds up) like they do at the top (when the bike's at rest).
^ || V
kinda like that.

Behrokh Khoshnevis, Professor of Industrial Assistance Engineering, Los Angeles, CA. Contour Crafting: Contour Crafting is a computerized fabrication technology for the automated construction of whole structures as well as sub-components, allowing a single house or colony of houses to be automatically constructed in a single run.
(from the Part 3 link)

I read a book called Fab last year that described something very similar to what this invention looks like. Neil Gershenfeld (the author) has some interesting ideas about info/comm revolutions vs. production revolutions, the latter being the idea behind his Fab Labs.
posted by carsonb at 6:45 AM on March 23, 2006

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