If you've seen his vacuum commercials, you know James Dyson loves nothing more than solving a deceptively simple engineering problem. Oh, how it delights him. But when his company introduced its nifty but ultimately confounding Air Multiplier fan last year, it solved a problem suffered by no one: the "uncomfortable buffeting" of air flowing from a common, bladed desktop fan. The engineering involved in shooting air forcefully and smoothly from the Multiplier's eye-catching ring was impressive, but its reason for being fell flat.
As it turns out, all it takes to turn a good-looking but ultimately strange product into something legitimately, usefully innovative is the addition of hot air. The Dyson Hot—essentially an Air Multiplier fan with a heating element—is proof.
Even though the ring-shaped Air Multiplier fan isn't particular powerful at $300, it's still, well, a bladeless ring! And while the answer to what comes next can only truly be known in the jetstreams of genius cycloning around in Dyson's head, cartoonist Tobias Lunchbreath has taken a stab at what ring-shaped future luxuries we may have the pleasure to purchase in the future.
Ever since Schuyler Skaats Wheeler introduced the first axial-bladed electric desk fan in 1882, fan technology has remained remarkably conservative. But that classic bladed design wasn't good enough for the innovative people at Dyson. With their new desk fan, Dyson has thrown out over a hundred years of axial desk fan technology to create the first fan that provides a continuous stream of smooth air.