When the wheel was invented, most of society threw its hands up and said “this is it!” Not all inventors are so narrow-minded. These visionaries, who took one look at their own legs, made a decision to push forward down a different path. Here’s to those with an imagination that includes vehicles with legs!
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In the past, the world was an inventor’s oyster. Anything that could be thought up and cobbled together was the next new thing. Included in this mad scientist mentality were quite a few walking vehicles, such as GE’s Walking Truck (top right), and the mechanical horse.
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Theo Jansen is a Dutch artist who has made his name creating kinetic sculptures that roam the land on hundreds of feet like millipedes. These lightweight creations are wind powered, and crawl around as if they were organic beasts.
(Images via gurneyjourney, superpunch)
Children always seem to have a more open mind, and that’s one reason why their toys are less constrained by the need for wheels. What’s more fun than a special vehicle that walks around like a person?
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While these awesome machines haven’t been created yet, this concept art is the first step in throwing off the yoke of a wheel-bound culture. These military vehicles aren’t hampered by any terrain, as they march over every obstacle in their path.
(Images via streettech, thedailywh.at)
Walking vehicles have a stranglehold over the imagination of sci fi enthusiasts, possibly inspired by the walking AT-AT’s from the Star Wars filmed, but most likely inspired by the sheer “gee whiz” feelings these vehicles evoke.
(Images via wikipedia, scale4x4rc, likecool, neil.fraser)
Walking vehicles are not considered practical, but that hasn’t stopped a multitude of handy creators from coming up with their own crawling machines. Like giant mechanical bugs, these step across the land at a fairly slow pace, but with a grace that is mesmerizing.
The Burning Man festival always has a view crazy vehicles wandering around, as DIY superstars show off their novel means of transportation.
(Images via rayfowler, design-laorosa)
Want to push the envelope even further? How about a small walking house, or shoes that do the walking for you? Neither invention will get to point B very quickly, but it will require zero effort!
(Images via defensetech, morganzilla, joe-ks)
Some construction vehicles that are required to cross terrain that would be impassable with treads or wheels, have the advantage of true functioning legs. Others are just for decoration.