Of course, great political and social will is still required and essential in the prudent and judicious acquisition and distribution of technology, but score one for scientists and engineers!
I need to find out more about how this device works (vapor compression distillation ?!?), but his accomplishments are an inspiration to me. I'm lucky and glad to have met Dean Kamen in my product design class at uni.
But Dean, give us our Sterling engine, puleeeeeeezzeee. (And throw in a Segway, while you're at it!)
UPDATE: Okay, I did some digging around after the initial enthusiasm had subsided. From a Google search, I've found many hits for "vapor compression distillation" which is an old technology for getting back some of the energy used to evaporate the water for distillation, and using it to evaporate more water. So if Kamen's device uses this process, I'm not sure what's so novel about it. Still, if he can increase the efficiency / reduce the price to levels affordable to the developing world, then bravo!