Few people have had as lasting an impact on today’s commuting culture as Englishman William Grout. Born in London in 1839, Grout revolutionized the bicycle by adding high-performance innovations like rubber tires. In 1878, he created a tire that could be removed from the front of the bike so it could be folded for storage. This was, by most accounts, the first foldable bike. The problem was that the process of disassembling the tire took nearly 10 minutes, and that was more time than the average commuter running late to work had to spare. Fortunately, the powers that be – meaning those brilliant bike innovators running the design departments at the companies of today – took Grout’s idea and modernized it, making it not only more efficient (and actually foldable without taking the frame apart), but also smaller, easier to store, and, for some, the addition of an electric motor.