It is not enough if gear is "good." It needs a solid niche to survive in the market.
This man's suit, harness, web gear, and backpack are all fabricated at his base,
because his needs are special. His parachute is repaired in-house as well.

Like anything else, gear needs a niche to survive in. If people don't buy it, it withers and dies in the marketplace. When shopping for commercial equipment, it sometimes helps us to think a little about the ecology of gear. We see three basic types in stores:

Somewhere, somehow, every aspect of commercially available equipment is a conscious choice. While the specific motives may vary, the ultimate aim is to sell the product. Although many manufacturers are sincerely trying to make good products, their choices are market driven. "Innovative" can be new-and-improved, or just new-and-might-sell-because-it's-different.

Understanding gear ecology helps us inform our choices in the following ways:

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