'Spider-Boy' spins his own wall-climbing device

Hibiki Kono, a 13-year-old in England, built and designed a vacuuming device that enables him to climb walls like his favorite superhero.

Hibiki Kono
Hibiki Kono scales a wall at his school, King's College School in Cambridge, England. Not to worry; there's a nice thick mat below in case the gadget comes unplugged or otherwise fails him. Geoff Robinson Photography

Meet Hibiki Kono, Spider-Man fan. The 13-year-old was no longer content to live out his Spidey dreams by dressing up in blue tights or watching superhero films. He wanted to climb walls. So he designed and built his own wall-scaling device and shimmied up a brick wall at his school in Cambridge, England.

As you can see from the excited applause of his peers in the video below, Kono--now known in some quarters as "Spider-Boy"--may have just surpassed Harry Potter as the superhero of young geeks everywhere.

Kono created his contraption for a school design technology project by attaching two $23, 1,400-watt vacuums to nozzle pads and plugging the suction machine in. He devised the gadget over the course of five months.

Those Cornell scientists working on an arachno-riffic palm-size liquid adhesion device should hire Kono stat. In the meantime, though, there are some walls the imaginative teen won't be climbing. "My mum thinks it's brilliant," Kono told The Sun of his device. "But she won't let me use it in my bedroom, as she's worried I may pull down the ceiling."

About the author

Leslie Katz, Crave's senior editor, heads up a team that covers the most crushworthy (and wackiest) tech, science, and culture around. As a co-host of the now-retired CNET News Daily Podcast, she was sometimes known to channel Terry Gross and still uses her trained "podcast voice" to bully the speech recognition software on automated customer service lines. E-mail Leslie.

 

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