Kare did describe one launch technology I'd never heard before, it involves the Grand Canyon.
Apparently one side of the top of the Grand Canyon is higher than the other. You put your craft on the lower edge and run a cable to the higher edge into a pulley system. You then attach a giant bucket of water to the end of the cable and let it drop. This will pull the craft across the canyon and launch it into the air. You detach the cable and have obtained the equivalent of a first stage rocket.
At the bottom of the canyon you open the bottom of the bucket to let the water out and haul the empty bucket it back up for another launch. He said this is a great 16th century launch system.