UAE hoteliers desperate for staff could get a little help from Italian engineer Enrico Berruti who has invented a bed that makes itself.
After three years of planning, his first prototype was on show at a five-day International Exhibition of Inventions held last month in Geneva.
AFP reported that the bed includes a contraption at the sides with tubes on which one wraps the sides of the duvet linen. A button will then activate the tubes to smooth over duvet linen, while straps at the side will tighten the sheet itself.
'To be honest, I am a little bit lazy so I thought of something to do the job (of making a bed) for me,' he said, adding that the application could be practical for people with back problems who may not be able to bend.
Like many other inventors at the show, he was seeking a deal that would eventually lead to the commercialisation of his project.
More deals were negotiated at the show than ever before. In 2006 over 3$0 million worth of deals were struck, while in 2007, licenses worth over $40 million were negotiated, according to a fair organiser. There were with 72,435 visitors in the five days of the show.
Jean-Luc Vincent, founding president of the exhibition, said that companies were increasingly 'looking for ideas outside their walls'.
'Procter and Gamble, for instance finds 40 percent of its innovations outside its own research and development department,” he said. 'The old idea that the invention which will make a profit for the company should emerge from its own technical department is being abandoned.'
This year, about 720 exhibitors from 45 countries hoped to get similar deals with venture capitalists or even businesses. The rule of the exhibition is that the invention can only be exhibited once in Geneva, and must have some form of intellectual property rights protection.
Inventions range from food products such as a non alcoholic beer jelly, to motor car parts - a device aimed at helping drivers to parallel park. Wei Feng, who came up with the latter device said, 'In China there is a massive problem with parking. Every time I pass by cars struggling to get into parallel parking lots, I think there must be a better way to do things.'