The BioLite CampStove: an ingenious example of human intellect identifying a need and finding a way to meet that need.
The Daily Beast reports on how technology is being used to bring relief to victims of Hurricane Sandy's wrath. Originally intended for use by hikers, the BioLite CampStove uses dry wood to provide heat and, at the same time, electricity to power consumer electronics.
The BioLite CampStove is about the size of a coffee urn. Developed as the hot new toy for hikers, the stove houses a small fire that burns from hunter-gatherer fuel sources—dry twigs, pinecones—and, in addition to warmth, generates electricity for users to charge mobile devices. You can cook on it, too. But with hundreds of thousands of people without power for days following the wrath of Sandy, and many in the New York region still in the dark, a serendipitous new function of the CampStove—disaster relief—has come to light.
Isn't that the mark of a great product? Giving people something before they know they needed it?
A device that allows them to cook and charge up simultaneously is invaluable, he says, because it helps keep morale high and tensions low.
The article goes on to explain how engineers of the product experimented with its use in the aftermath of Hurricane Sandy, particularly in Manhattan, Staten Island and the Rockaways.
This brand of socially responsible innovation is a segment of the economy of the future.