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New Zealand

The Romotow, folded up and ready for transport.

If you're like me, you probably find it difficult to get excited about caravans. The Romotow's designers felt the same way, so they've put together a unique design concept – a luxury caravan that folds out like a flick knife (or a USB key) to reveal a deck area that expands the floor space of the unit by some 70 percent. Will it make production? Who knows – but it's certainly a remarkable design. Gizmag spoke to W2 Director and Romotow designer Stuart Winterbourn in Christchurch, New Zealand.  Read More

Porter, world's first driving dog

A cute canine is something that shouldn't need much marketing – it pretty much sells itself. Or so you'd think. According to the ASPCA, around two million dogs are euthanized each year after finding their way into shelters. People simply don't adopt these abandoned and lost dogs at the same rate they find their way into shelters. For this reason, the SPCA in Auckland, New Zealand, which estimates it alone has anywhere from 50 to 100 dogs eagerly awaiting new owners each week, decided it was time to advertise with the launch of an advertising campaign that put the dogs back on the streets ... behind the wheel of a specially modified car.  Read More

The Martin Jetpack is now regularly being flown at speeds of 50 km/h (31 mph)

When we first covered the Martin Jetpack back in March, 2010, the creators were hoping to get it on the backs of buyers sometime in 2011. While 2011 has come and gone, the New Zealand-based Martin Aircraft Company is continuing test flights and is now seeking investors to help bring the manned Jetpack to market in mid 2013.  Read More

Workers install a solar array in Tokelau, an island nation that will be powered with renew...

Adopting renewable energy sources such as solar and wind power is a great way to reduce emissions and produce energy locally. In places like remote Pacific islands, however, those benefits are potentially a key to independence. For that reason Tokelau, a 10 sq. km. (3.86 sq. mi) island nation that lies around 500 km (311 mi) north of Samoa and which is a territory of New Zealand, is about to ditch diesel as a source of electricity and switch to solar power.  Read More

Hut on Sleds: the mother of all beach huts? (Photo: Jackie Meiring)

Fighting coastal erosion is a little like fighting aging. One can can make endless expensive artificial enhancements, but one day those enhancements will fail, and when they do, things will get ugly. In the case of erosion, for many that can only mean packing up and heading off for pastures new (or at least inland), for the owners of the Hut on Sleds, it's as simple as remembering where you parked your tractor. The Hut on Sleds, you see, is designed to be moved in the more literal sense.  Read More

What will be pulling into the station in 50 years time?

Public transport systems offer many advantages over the personal alternatives when it comes to getting large numbers of people from A to B in style and safety - less congestion, less pollution and lower costs for starters. But while we certainly see plenty of impetus on the personal transport front here at Gizmag, fresh concepts for the future of mass transport don't seem to enjoy the same level of exposure, despite the fact that many cities around the world are still saddled with public transport infrastructure that's been in place for over a century. There are some radical plans in the works, however, and the 21st Century will undoubtedly bring with it a raft of people moving projects that redefine our notion of public transport. So just what will be pulling into the station in 50 years time? Read on for our pick of the most tantalizing concepts out there.  Read More

Up, up and away ... the BEXUS 11 balloon, all 12,000m3 of it, just before take-off. The ba...

An off-the-shelf camera from Axis Communications has set the world record for the highest wireless network camera delivering high quality images to Earth. The PTZ (pan/tilt/zoom) dome network camera was sent into the atmosphere to a height of 35 km (21. 7 miles) from the Esrange Space Center, north of Sweden, as part of the BEXUS 11 program.  Read More

The Martin Aircraft jetpack is the first commercially-available jetpack

It's been a long time coming. While Arthur C. Clarke's satellites have taken to space, and James Bond's futuristic mobile technology has become common place, still the legend of Icarus has captivated us and the dream of sustained personal flight has eluded us. But the future is here! Finally we can all take flight as Martin Aircraft in New Zealand releases the first commercially-available jet pack!  Read More

The Cranklock in action

Seconds are everything in cycle racing. A 10-second gap on the nearest guy behind you means he's got to work his butt off just to stay in touch. So a device that can reliably give you an effort-free 20-second advantage on a 3km twisty downhill stage is clearly going to be dynamite in the racing market. It's called the Cranklock, and it allows cyclists to enjoy motorcycle-style lean angles and massively improved cornering speeds by putting your center of gravity low and to the inside of the corner, like you can on a motorcycle. And if initial reactions from pro racers in New Zealand are any indication, it's going to revolutionize the world of competitive cylcing. Oh - and there's safety and security benefits for your average road rider, too. This is a sensational idea.  Read More

Sealegs during its record crossing of the English Channel

December 5, 2007 Sealegs International is gearing up for a world record attempt as the fastest amphibious vehicle over 500m on-water.  Read More

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