A treadputer is a workstation which includes a treadmill for walking or running, and a computer which is set up to be used while working on on the treadmill. Treadputers are designed to address concerns about physical fitness among people who work extensively on computers, allowing them to exercise while working. For people who spend long hours behind the computer every day, a treadputer can be a more workable solution than an entirely separate fitness schedule.
Potentially, a treadputer could also be set up with exercise machines other than treadmills, such as stationary bicycles. In addition to being used for fitness, a stationary bicycle could also be used to power the workstation and part of the office, assuming that the user wanted to take the time to hook the treadmill up to an electricity generation and storage system.
The treadputer reflects a growing trend which emerged in the late 1990s. Prior to the 1990s, office environments tended to be very inflexible, without notable innovations or repurposing to fit unique needs. With the rise of the technology industry, however, offices began to be reimagined, with businesses beginning to think outside the box to increase employee efficiency and comfort. One of the most radical changes of the 1990s came in the form of individual workspace innovations, with businesses recognizing that the old fashioned desk and cubicle weren't always ideal.
For people in the tech industry, extremely long days in front of the computer are very common, and prolonged computer work clearly has a number of physical disadvantages which create strain on the body. In addition to creating physical discomfort and associated health problems, computer work also promotes a highly sedentary lifestyle; after a 10 hour day working on code, for example, tech industry workers do not generally want to work out, even if they care about physical fitness.
Rising concerns about physical fitness and comfort led to the development of the treadputer by several enterprising tech industry workers, and the concept spread among the tech community through social networking sites and tech industry news sites. So far, no manufacturer has produced a treadmill specifically designed for treadputer use; instead, people modify existing treadmills and workspaces.
In case you're curious, treadputer users report that it is possible to use the computer while walking and running, although a trackball is recommended, as opposed to a mouse. Some people also take advantage of voice recognition software to manage their computers while they run or walk, and many treadputers include a space for phones so that users can make calls while working out.