Check out The Fig Rig, a camera mounting apparatus designed by Mike Figgis for use on his whacky experimental film Hotel (and some others). It’s designed for use with small digital video cameras, but I find myself wondering if it might be useful for a still camera. :)
Actually, whatever the next DSLR I get will be, it’s almost certain to have video capability, so that would make something like this more useful. For a still camera, it would basically be just a stabilizing device, inferior to a solid tripod, but more convenient and easy to move. I wonder how well it would work, compared to just hand-holding the camera with VR on. The Manfrotto site has a video where Figgis demonstrates usage of the rig, including with a fairly long zoom lens. He uses his thigh to brace the bottom part of the rig just a little off the vertical, and uses that point as a pivot for a long shot as his actors move around. It’s quite interesting.
What does it cost? About US$300, and that’s just for the wheel part and some cable clips. A bit pricey, but if you consider what a halfway decent tripod and head costs, I guess it’s not that bad. However, since both hands are occupied with holding the rig during use, you’re going to probably need some remote control equipment too.
A pic, showing a Fig Rig with camera, mic and what I assume is a remote controller for the camera (small object on the upper left side of the wheel):