Half a croissant, on a plate, with a sign in front of it saying '50c'
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Individual Zeppelins.

Cable Led Airship Backpacks - could take you to Kashmir and back.
  (+7, -1)
(+7, -1)
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Each 'passenger' is given a backpack that is then inflated with helium/hydrogen/whatever to a level where the lift generated is just over the total weight.

They are then hoisted up to a giant cable that is continuously being pulled around a massive cable-pulley-like system. The connection to the cable is managed by a computer and lever system to gracefully enter passenger onto the cable and maintain cable speed.

The passenger is clipped on and whisked away to their destination. The range of destinations is probably city-city to limit the spiderweb effect of the cables.

Possible variants: No clips, passengers must hold on themselves; they can then reach for other cable systems as they pass by to change direction/destination.

Jinbish, Mar 01 2007

Personal Blimp http://www.personalblimp.com/images.html
[hippo, Mar 01 2007]

Halfbakery: Balloon Backpack Balloon_20Backpack
Close, but doesn't describe the towing infrastructure. [jutta, Mar 01 2007]

Wikipedia: Zeppelin http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Zeppelin
Unlike this invention, a Zeppelin is a -> dirigible with a -> rigid frame. Ahem. [jutta, Mar 01 2007]

Scandanavian Immigrants http://www.vikingkittens.com/
(sort of!) [gnomethang, Mar 02 2007]

[link]






       Over the Hills and Far Away, eh?
gnomethang, Mar 01 2007
  

       It might make immigration control a bit more tricky.
theleopard, Mar 01 2007
  

       They have a song for that.
angel, Mar 01 2007
  

       For immigration control?
theleopard, Mar 01 2007
  

       Yep. Scandinavian immigration, mainly.   

       The main job balloons in this idea is to reduce the weight experienced by the cable, rather than simply being personal blimps. (Although I love just how oversized those blimps have to be - they're a lot larger than I estimated.)
Jinbish, Mar 01 2007
  

       And when something goes wrong, it rains flaming people.   

       Please don't get me wrong, if it were possible -maybe at a theme park- I would do it.
Newo Ikkin, Mar 01 2007
  
      
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