In Detail: Ben Gulak and BPG Motors
It's not just Ben that's responsible for the Uno, he has a competent team under his command, but the most crucial piece of assistance may have come from Ben's grandfather. Werner Poss was an inventor who developed and refined complex machines that process meat. His company is still in business although Poss passed away in 2004. With tools and materials willed to him by his grandfather, Ben put together the first Uno prototype using angle iron and wheelchair motors. Ben readily admits that his grandfather essentially paved the way for the Uno. "Without his generosity, I wouldn't have the resources available to continue my work," Ben said.
As we see in Translogic 47, the Uno has grown into more than just a kid's experiment. Each year the Intel International Science and Engineering Fair (ISEF) attracts more than 1,500 top high school students from 50 different countries. In 2007, Gulak won a Grand Award from ISEF thanks to the innovative design of the Uno. Popular Science also put their stamp of approval on the Uno calling it one of the year's Top 10 Inventions in 2008. Gulak has appeared on The Tonight Show as well as Dragon's Den, a Canadian reality show where contestants pitch their invention to a panel of investors trying to raise money – Gulak convinced the panel to invest $1.25 million in BPG to build the Uno.
And in his spare time, Ben's company BPG Werks also developed the DTV Shredder. The company calls it a "an all-terrain, adrenaline pumpin', mean lookin' board." We see a future episode of Translogic in the making.
But it's the Uno that seems to have the most practical application and might be an excellent transportation alternative for those who live in urban areas. BPG says the Uno could be on sale as early as 2012.
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