In the department of cool inventions you'll probably never use, the inventor of the Segway has come up with an idea for an inflatable wind turbine.

Reader support helps sustain our work. Donate today to keep our climate news free.

Its main advantage is that it's mobile: imagine parking your EV and sending your inflatable wind turbine up into the sky to charge it while you're at work. It could be moved to take advantage of the best winds as they shift, and, more to the point, It could also be mounted on top of a building or on the side of the road in order to double as a billboard.

Like the Segway, this seems like the sort of tech toy that is a little too expensive and a little too ridiculous to catch on, but that your kooky, overpaid boss might cotton to and allow you to borrow when you're visiting his country estate. (On the other hand, the Segway has also been adopted by tourism companies and police departments — maybe corporations and municipalities will also develop a fondness for mobile inflata-turbines.)

Grist thanks its sponsors. Become one.