Since 1980, hundreds of young engineers have entered the Igor I. Sikorsky Human Powered Helicopter Competition. Nobody has won the grand prize of $250,000 for demonstrating "a one minute hovering time, a momentary achievement of 3 meters altitude, and controlling the vehicle within a constrained box -- all in the same flight." But damn, they're sure trying. "Straight Up Difficult" (NPR)
David Pescovitz is Boing Boing's co-editor/managing partner. He's also a research director at Institute for the Future. On Instagram, he's @pesco.