I am getting ready for another busy day of work in China, but before I head down to breakfast I want to quickly pass along a few of the links that have been accumulating in my inbox.
A few readers alerted me to Cyglo tires (pictured here) which have LED lights embedded in the tread or tire wall. A motion sensor within the tire turns on the lights, which can either flash or remain steady. It is an interesting product, and with the Tron sequel to be released later this year their timing couldn’t be better, but I wonder about the idea of embedded lights in a component that needs to be replaced often with heavy use. Cost and durability of the tires will be the key factors there, and I wonder about recyclability with the extra electronics.
Wired Gadget Lab, The Huffington Post, and Fast Company are just a few of the sites mentioning the Apple patent for a “smart bike”, which Patently Apple posted last week. I know a few people who already use an iphone, with various GPS mapping apps, for some of the functions listed in the patent. It is nice to have one device for that type of data, but durability and weather proofing are the key disadvantages now compared to bike specific products like the ones from Garmin. It is not clear whether Apple would address those types of hardware issues if something like this were to actually move forward, but I don’t think it is likely that they would. If Apple does decide to pursue this idea though, it will be interesting to see how they address the user interface design (an area where many of the cyclo-computer and power meter manufacturers are lacking).
The ThinBike was designed by TreeHugger founder Graham Hill in partnership with Schindelhauer. The bike is a single-speed with handlebars and pedals that fold flat to save space. Learn more about it in this interview and video demo with Graham. You can also see a photo slideshow here.
Finally, I want to mention ‘Bespoke: Creative’, a design event to be held in Brick Lane, London this October. The event is a collaboration between 2Xanadu (a creative media consultant), LUMA (a carbon bicycle manufacturer) and McFaul Studio (a London based Design Agency). The event will feature an exhibition for which they are inviting well known designers to design graphics for the frames of LUMA’s fixed gear bikes. There is also a competition where you can submit an entry following the same brief as the handpicked designers. The winning entries will be featured in the exhibition. In addition the best overall design entered wins the bike it is transferred onto. Find out more and enter the competition at the ‘Bespoke: Creative’ website.