Saturday, 15 December 2007

Electric Dreams

I'm annoyed and sorry because I should have posted about this at least a week ago, as it’s a really sexy idea. As ever with Web 3.07 triggers, I've been reminded by a post over at the excellent John Grant's Greenormal to get my shit together, because it’s really important. John who along with Mark Earls' book Herd, published possibly one of the most constructively important marketing books of the millennium so far, also recently did a post on how so many good ideas from the past haven't been utilized properly. I really got thinking about this when Matt Catt turned up to a party in a Sinclair C5 because not only did he tip up (and leave) in the coolest manner ever, but did so in an environmentally responsible way.

Beijing is looking very zippy with these electric bikes come bicycles that I photographed above. They may not look like a Hummer but then only cocks drive Hummers right? I want to look into these funny electric bikes a bit more and possibly buy one because I think they are a terrific urban transport solution.

I think we really messed up when we built our cities around the car and sent our kids into bedrooms instead of out to play. But if we could champion transport ideas like the above and the Sinclair C5 again we'd not have to worry so much about our children getting run over and they'd be able to learn all those social skills that we had a chance to. The ones that prevented us from turning into socially alienated school killers that love to post their dark obsessions on the internet.

OK rant over, but if as one global planner shared with me recently you're one of those advertising types who are in this business for the money can I suggest you buy John’s book or maybe read his blog and see how you can be both a 'legend' and do good at the same time. Otherwise you’re not part of the solution. And I got a problem with that.

Bikes for rent in preparation for the 2008 Olympic visitors outside Jianguomen Subway Station Beijing


  1. The electric bike is really sturdy. I am wondering why don't they put that electric bikes for rent instead. More cooler, isn't it?

  2. That's a really good idea Oakie. It makes a lot of sense for me too and I'll be thinking about it a bit more. Now whats with your twitters? Its a constant stream of Oreos, ice cream, cake and all that sweet stuff. We're going to have you on the Som Tam Boo Para and Cow Niaow diet as soons as we get you back to Krung Thep :)

  3. hi charles, thanks for kind words, have you seen the zippee, I met them recently at a green event, it looks very cool and from pov of license insurance etc it counts as a pushbike I think

  4. The new style in eco-efficiency might come more from the developing markets than those of us in smug western Europe!

  5. Electric Bicycles and Electric Scooters

    Elmo The Electric Bike and Electric Scooter Guy

    This is an excellent blog for electric bicycles. There are not too many around like this. Thanks for making this such an interesting subject. Oh, by the way, Wired Magazine has a great article on hybrid cars this month. (Jan 2008 issue).

    God Bless,

  6. Thanks for the link John. I've checked it out and its very interesting. Particularly the lack of usual road taxes and legal requirements with the Zippee.

    Thanks for dropping by Mark Linder, Elmo, John and Oakie. I'm going to do a series of posts about electric bikes in Beijing. It's too important not to blog.

  7. I just heard a report on the radio that either there was going to be a very high tax or a ban completely on electric scooters and bicycles. I got so damn mad I thought my head was going to break open. The reason for the ban was because of studies showing that the batteries on these vehicles were too volatile and were prone to explosions.

    I think they are initially going to say there is a ban when there really isn't one, so that the tax on them won't seem so bad.

    Anyway, I wrote an article on the story on my blog at

  8. Hey Mark. Check out electric dreams part two post. Alas it got stolen yesterday :(