Floormats that suck
From MSNBC (no date):
[T]his floormat [...] vacuums dirt off the soles of your shoes when you step on it.
No. It really does.
Each mat is about 20 by 40 inches, and comes attached to a vacuum unit and sensor. The sensor detects when someone gets close and turns on the vacuum, but no air is actually sucked in except where a foot depresses and opens the tiny nozzles.
Naturally it's not quite as useful for snow, mud and other sole hazards, but it could probably handle those with some modifications. As it is, it could be useful in labs and clean rooms where outside particles are carefully safeguarded against; the bottoms of feet are popular vectors for contaminating dust and bacteria, so a system like this might be considered by places making such considerations.
Actually, I think we’re missing a trick if it’s only being considered for specialist applications in labs and hospitals.
I think it would be very useful for more widespread use. How about removing excess wetness from the public’s shoes in wet weather – something soggy doormats fail miserably at? That could be invaluable in high street shops where visitors routinely, um, visit and shoppers tend to slip ‘n’ slide about like they’re on ice during wet weather.
It might also prove a nice way of keeping those nasty pollen grains in check in hay fever season. Ahh-chooo!
As well as reducing the risk of being sued, (I’m sure you’ll be diggin’ those lower insurance premiums!! --ahem --) is the shed-load of money a business can save on reducing vacuuming duties. Heck, you might even be able to
sack streamline your cleaning team.
Now that’s what I call spend management!