Good point. The single speed bicycle is probably the best, simplest and most energy efficient vehicle invented to date, a perfect compromise between carbon-fiber electric assist Uberbike and the Draisine...It's not just a matter of simplicity. It's where on the spectrum of simplicity to complexity you want to operate. Using Kevin's example of a coaster brake cruiser, there are simpler machines, e.g., a draisine, a 19th century two-wheeler that the rider pushed along with his feet on the ground (like the balance bikes now popular among toddlers). And there are more complex machines, e.g., a carbon-frame bike with disc brakes and electronic derailleur shifting. We won't even get into electric bikes.
As costs rise, benefits rise. But the benefit curve tends to flatten out (after a while, no matter how much you spend, it's only a little bit better) and the cost curve tend to shoot up (it's easy to spend more). The goal is to pick the optimum point where you get adequate benefit without spending too much. Spending includes not just the initial cost of purchase but the cost (and labor) of maintenance. Of course, it's hard to put a price on coolness.
LOL yep- I have a brakeless wonder coming. I did buy a Boomerang for the fork in case I can’t live without brakes!Many modern street BMX don't use brakes. Simple bikes. I was taught by kids various methods for stopping quickly. Useful to know. I brake almost half the time now without conventional brakes. I've gone through a pair of sneakers in the process. It's kinda fun too. Best without fenders.