- Category: Volume 87 (Fall 2015 - Spring 2016)
- Published: 14 October 2015
- Written by THE OUTLOOK STAFF
Years ago, many of us thought that by 2015 we would live in a world where people vacationed on the moon and everyone traveled by way of flying car. Although both of those things have yet to come to fruition as the final months of 2015 quickly approach, it seems as though we have moved one step closer to the future thanks to the creation of what many people are referring to as a “hover board.”
Although this new tech toy may be the closest thing that we currently have to a functional hover board, it has wheels. So what is it? A skateboard? A scooter? A Segway? It turns out that it’s mostly a mix of all of the above. Using your feet to guide and balance you, this gadget rides similar to a Segway without the wheels. A self-balancing scooter, if you will.
These scooters seem to have first appeared in the spotlight when Justin Bieber posted an Instagram video of himself using one to ride around in circles in his home. Not long after, they then began to show up in six-second video clips posted by “celebrities” with millions of followers on Vine. Chris Brown, Wiz Khalifa, Skrillex, and Jamie Foxx are among many of the other famous people who have been caught riding these self-balancing scooters in public.
This faux-hover board phenomenon has apparently also reached the University campus, with a number of students utilizing these scooters to make their way to and from class. “I see them around campus all the time and I don’t understand why,” said one editor. Another added, “Our campus is small and you should be able to walk.”
Prices for these self-balancing scooters range from $270 all the way to $699 on Amazon, making many editors wonder about the true necessity of this product. “I think they’re pretty cool but I don’t understand the practical use for them,” explained one editor. “They’re really expensive so I think it’s a status thing.”
One editor observed that regardless of the price, people will continue to buy these self-balancing scooters just to keep up with the current trend. Another mentioned that because there truly is nothing else like them on the market right now, many people are willing to dish out hundreds of dollars just to get their hands on one of these wannabe hover boards. “You’re basically flying to work or class, which is actually awesome,” said one editor.
Only one member of The Outlook staff has ever been brave enough to attempt riding one of these gadgets, claiming that they’re actually “quite fun.” Many other editors admitted that they would fear for their own safety if ever given the chance to use a self-balancing scooter. “I suck at all things on wheels, so I don’t think floating around would be any better for me,” one staff member commented.
Although The Outlook staff is mostly impartial on the use of self-balancing scooters, they have relatively high hopes for the future of technology. “The next big thing realistically might be cars that drive themselves, although that thought is actually terrifying,” commented one editor. Another staff member hopes to see fingerprint credit and debit cards “so I don’t have to keep dragging my wallet around with me everywhere I go.”