Native Affairs - Inventing Kiwis

By Wepiha Te Kanawa

What do the eggbeater, the jet-pack, and bungee cord all have in common? They were invented in Aotearoa.

Native Affairs wanted to know if the New Zealand public had more innovative ideas. So we visited Sylvia Park, Auckland’s largest shopping mall, to find out.

We asked if you could invent something to make your life easier what would it be? Participants had to work hard for an answer bu many had creative ideas. 80% of respondents answered the same, devices to help people. “A robot that will do my homework, so when I got home I can just relax,” said one teenager. “A device that would cook anything I ask them to make,” said another.

Everyone we spoke to agreed on the best invention to date. The mobile phone. All except one person said they couldn’t live without it. “You can send emails, browse the internet and check social media.”

What will Marae look like in the year 2500? Some thought a futurist Marae with interesting architecture or floating in the air would be the next Māori meeting house. Most preferred to stick to traditional Marae but one hoped for at least wifi.

Finally, family secrets were shared when asked about their best whānau invention. One man’s father had fashioned a back scratcher out of a stick and a Waikato beer bottle cap.

What’s your best family invention?