Sometimes inspiration come from the most unlikely places.
Tucked into my seat on the train earlier this week, flicking through The Metro with the patter of raindrops on the window in the background, I came across this...
No it's not a version of MJ's Bille Jean video souped up for the cyber generation. It's actually the latest and greatest in the harvesting of natural energy sources.
Pavegen is the brainchild of Laurence Kemball-Cook, a young British entrepreneur who has combined a recycled rubber and polymer mix with a hybrid kinetic energy-harvesting system. Stepping onto the 'tile' generates between 5 and 8 joules of electricity - a small percentage of this is used to the light the tile while the majority is either stored in a battery or powers the surrounding area.
It might sound like small potatoes but Kemball-Cook took a Pavegen dancefloor to Bestival last year where the grooves of 50,000 festival-goers charged 1,000 mobile phones. They have been installed (Pavegen that is, not the festival-goers) permanently at a school and more recently at Westfield Stratford City.
It's extraordinary and exciting stuff. Imagine...our 'energy output' collected and tranformed into a unique - and boundless when you think about it - source of electricity.
Brings a whole new meaning to the term recycling, doesn't it?