No turning off Dyson's tap
WELL, now we know. Dyson's much heralded "mystery invention" has been revealed as a tap that doubles as a hand dryer.
The "Dyson Airblade tap dryer" – and the lengths the company was going to protect it – had become something of a cause celebre in recent days. 'The Guardian' newspaper carried out a number of vox pops around London asking people on the street what they thought the invention was.
It's easy to mock the invention which looks like a tap with wings, and it's probably easier to scoff at the £40m (€52m) James Dyson's company put into this and the new models of its "airblade" dryers, but there is a serious point here.
Dyson made the decision to spend this money in the depths of the financial crisis, when hardly anyone would even consider spending money, and this is the fruit of the labour of 125 engineers.
James Dyson, like most inventors and entrepreneurs, always seems to be looking for the next deal. No sooner has one project been completed than there is something else on the way. Some of these will be hits, some of these won't be. But that's part of the fun of it. Few people would argue that the Dyson vacuum cleaner hasn't been a roaring success, for example, and the "airblade" dryers looked bizarre when they first appeared five years ago. Now they are de rigeur in many bathrooms.
If the tap dryer is a success, Mr Dyson will likely carry on looking for new inventions, and if it bombs, he will probably do the same. That's the thing about people like him – it's the chase that matters.