For Fun a Couple of friends (Martin, Victor & Dave) and I entered into a Hackathon in London, it was an excuse to visit some friends in London. Turns out we actually met and worked with some pretty cool people and ended up not just winning 1st place in London but also took 1st place in one of the Categories in the Global Hackathon.
Below is a Summary from our project entry page.
Social Cycle is an integrated platform to improve urban cyclist safety and empower the cycling community with wearable technology and a mobile app.
The number of urban cyclists are increasing all over the world as more people recognise the health, environmental and other benefits of cycling. The cycle use in London has increased 176% since 2000*. As urban cyclists ourselves, we want to take on the challenge to improve the safety of cycling in our cities while the infrastructure is slowly being upgraded. We also want to share the joy of cycling with as many people as possible by connecting the cyclist community.
###The cape - Improve urban cyclist safety On the over-crowded roads where urban cyclists are fighting against other vehicles, the last thing you want to do is to lose control of your bike. We designed the cape to help the cyclists be more visible to other road users as well as to navigate through the city without taking your hands off your handle bars.
We wanted the cape to be flexible like fabric but also have some physical volume to it. The structure draws inspiration from the soles of trainers. The LEDs are contained and protected within each triangular node and the breathable fabric acts as a flexible matrix to hold the cape close to the contours of the body. The profile was designed to accentuate the human form but also efficiently cover any backpack to which it’s applied. It is designed to not interfere with the cyclist so that s/he can focus on riding safely.
Once it’s put on, the rider has access to the following features:
Hands-free indication The cape automatically indicates for you before you turn based on your predefined route.
Smart navigation Cycling is the best way to explore new places in the city. Tell the Social Cycle app your chosen new destination, it can then sync with your cape that flashes on your left or right shoulder to guide you along the way.
Rear light The cape also glows just like your rear light by default, so that you can be always visible to other road users.
Brake Light Using GPS data and accelerometer, the cape lets other road users know when you are slowing down. The cape has a scaling red strip to indicate light/heavy braking.
##The app - Connect and empower cycling community
Although your bike can only take one person, cyclists share a natural bond. From individual cyclists, bike shops to cyclist cafés, cycling is more than a mode of transport but a lifestyle. We believe that the stronger this bond is amongst the cycling community, the more cyclists there will be.
Community support wherever you are
It’s inevitable to have punctures, loose pedals or other troubles while you’re on the road. Sometimes you might forget to bring the right tools, and sometimes you might simply not have the knowledge to fix it yourself. The Social Cycle app connects you to other cyclists nearby to lend you a hand with a smile. Alternatively, it will also show you the closest bike shops if no one happens to be around.
Real-time road condition report
Pot holes, Constructions, road closures or accidents, our cities can be unpredictable. Cyclists can easily alert others with the Social Cycle app, which will then link with the cape to guide you through the alternative route and get you to your destination.
Helping others not only feels good but it’s also rewarding in a very real way with Social Cycle. Everyone who receives help from other cyclists can choose to give them badges so their good deeds are recognised by the community, also to tip them points that can be exchanged into exclusive offers and gifts from participating stores and organisations.
Billy (Product Design), Silvia (Experience Designer)
Dave (Hardware Engineer), Victor & John (Software Engineers)
Arduino setup and our Iconic Mobile App can be found on Github