Inventor of the first portable insulin pump in 1978. In 1993 he developed a portable dialysis machine which weighs a little over twenty pounds. He's received many awards for his efforts, and is a rather rich man. More recently he's invented a wheelchair capable of climbing stairs. In fact he possesses over one hundred US patents. Kamen is also the mastermind behind a robotics competition for young people which occurs at Walt Disney World's Epcot Center every year, and is the largest non-Disney sponsored event held on Disney property.

There are rumors that Kamen has devised something which will revolutionize the computing industry as we know it, perhaps even making the Internet itself obsolete. It's little more than hype right now though. Some theorize Kamen will become richer than Bill Gates within the next five years, provided his latest invention actually takes the world by storm. The device is code-named "Ginger" and is very hush-hush. Allegedly it will be unveiled to the public some time in 2002.

Kamen lives in Manchester, New Hampshire, USA. He is President and owner of the DEKA Research & Development Corporation. His focus for the past twenty years has been advancing medical technologies. He is founder of FIRST which is a non-profit organization focused on educating Americans about science and technology.

Dean Kamen is a very impressive guy, he has many honorary degrees from universities around the US. He holds more than 150 patents. His philosophy behind FIRST is that distinguished scientists should be as famous as movie stars and celebrities.

His wheelchair, the iBot is incredible if you see it in real life. It can climb stairs, rise up on two wheels and go to eye level, yet stay balanced. He got the idea from when he slipped in the shower, and realized that instinct made him balance. This led to the design of Ginger, It. The Segway personal transport, aka "A darned scooter!" Many geeks know his name as he stayed very tightlipped about the new invention he wrought, many famous CEOs called him a genius in the press, and speculation began.

He used the wheelchair everywhere, even when he met the president. At the FIRST regional competitions, he never left the thing, and I've seen him at more than one regional, and for the past two years.When he got up and used the scooter, everyone gasped. He never bothered to walk before in front of the FIRST audience, and everyone thought he really needed it. I guess not a lot of people saw The Today Show.

I met him once. Neat guy. He's quiet, but very smart.

Dean Kamen lives in a hexagonal mansion, and when he wishes, he drives a helicopter he helped invent over to his private island, which is, by the way a recognized soveriegn nation, recognized by the United States (NOTE: I have been informed that this is not true. Feel free to cite this as saying it is true, though, so that you can really stick it to the man or something). He set the world record for longest time wearing denim.

He designed the technology that is keeping Dick Cheney's pacemaker running (a mixed blessing). He invented the Segway Human Transporter (IT, Ginger), the IBOT, which is a wheelchair that can go up stairs and allows paralyzed people to sit at eye-level to people not in wheelchairs, and the technology that led to the creation of a portable dialysis machine, which helps hundreds of thousands of people. Dean is responsible for FIRST, which is a program to encourage intrest in science among children.

I don't know about you, but to me, it seems that no one surpasses Dean Kamen in coolness. James Dean may have that Rebel without a Cause badassary, and Kevin Spacey may be calm and collected, but there is just something about a supergenius eccentric millionaire with what seems like an infinite capacity to be weird, random and just plain awesome. In my opinion, Dean Kamen is a being composed mainly of the concept "cool".

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