Shweeb first surfaced last summer as a gimmicky but eye-catching tourist attraction. It's a monorail system in which the "cars" are clear plastic pedal-powered bubbles, hanging under the monorail. The cars, equipped with seven gears, supposedly travel very quickly, nearing 30 mph over short distances, as tracked on a 218-yard test track built at the company's New Zealand headquarters.
An invention that's been around for two decades, but is only now getting any real attention, could change the way millions of people drive -- if people ever have the good sense to adopt it, its inventor says. Japanese inventor Masuyuki Naruse claims that placing the braking and acceleration pedals in our cars side-by-side, just inches apart, is a dangerous design flaw. The solution: his Naruse pedal, a unified pedal design that puts accelerator and brake on the same foot-activated lever.