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From Barnes & NobleBarnes & Noble Discover Great New Writers
It's an unusual occurrence for us to feature a business book in the Discover program, but Steve Kemper's riveting account of a modern-day invention offers a perfect segue between the history of an idea and great storytelling. It also provides irrefutable evidence to the contrary for those who think that tales of eccentric inventors can only be found in the pages of dusty history books.
Code Name Ginger is the enthralling story of Dean Kamen, a New Hampshirebased scientist who is equal parts Thomas Edison, Henry Ford, and P. T. Barnum. Kamen came to the attention of the general public when he was caught up in a maelstrom of publicity surrounding his top-secret invention. Known by the code name "Ginger" or the acronym IT, Kamen's work-in-progress was touted by technology gurus as the most seminal achievement since the introduction of the internal combustion engine. In fact, Kamen was developing a self-balancing, battery-powered human transporter with a long-range plan to change the future of urban transportation.
Kemper's chronicle of the frantic and exhausting process of research and development that led to the introduction of Kamen's invention -- officially dubbed the Segway -- continually draws the reader ever deeper into this extraordinary story. And his engrossing book reveals Kamen as a 21st-century visionary who is remarkable as much for his paranoia and his ambition as he is for the sheer brilliance of his creation. (Fall 2003 Selection)