I remember being a fan of Super Dave Osbourne when I was a kid. In many ways he filled in the self-inflicted pain humor that Wile E. Coyote did for a generation before. I recall at one point (and I’m possibly remembering something else … something similar) Super Dave had “invented” airbags for his motorcycle. This would have been around the time that airbags were being introduced for cars … and of course, he got hurt.
If I recall correctly, Super Dave’s airbag deployed in front of his bike, but he was thrown free. And probably crushed to just feet sticking out of his helmet … that’s how these things generally went. I can’t believe I can’t find that picture.
Anyways, since then, many types of airbags have been invented. Volvo has talked about airbags on the front of your car to protect pedestrians. Several motorcycle manufacturers have come up with airbags that work better than Super Dave’s. Cars no longer list the existence of an airbag but rather how many of them and how sophisticated they are.
So today, I want to introduce you to whole house airbags. These have been invented by the Japanese to protect your house from earthquakes. No really. The plan is an “earthquake sensor” will trigger and a large and fast air pump will inflate an airbag beneath your house to “float” it above the foundation and protect it from the worst of the earthquake. I say “the worst,” because they’re aiming to float your house about 3cm above its foundation… and the oscillation of many earthquakes is much larger than that… but still, it will reduce the worst of the effects.
Good thinking outside-the-box … err … house.