Posts Tagged ‘bicycle’

Bike Maps

Wednesday, March 10th, 2010

The Register is reporting that some company in Mountain View includes cycling directions in some areas of the world. Old hat, I’d say, as the Dutch national cyclists union has had a really good bike trip mapper for quite some time already which makes use of the cycling infrastructure we have here. Too bad the editor to add data to the system seems to be a Flash app.

Speaking of apps, there’s an app for cycle route planning, which prompted the MOMC to say “I want an iPhone!”. To which my knee-jerk Free Software response was “No, you don’t. Really, you don’t.” But how do I make it a little less knee-jerk and a little more reasoned? Or how do we get pseudo-community organizations like the cyclists union to produce apps in a more open fashion so that they’re easier to port to all the platforms we use? I’d like that cycle mapping app on my n810, for instance.

Low tech

Wednesday, June 3rd, 2009

It’s hardly rocket science, but I have derived satisfaction this evening from changing the tire on my bicycle. It no longer goes wobble and bump — the sidewalls were tearing on the old tire — and my bike feels a good deal faster again. The previous tire lasted two years and several thousand km of touring and commuting.

I broke the work down into little steps: remove wheel from bike (quick release axle); remove old tire; put new tire on; reinsert inner tube; mount in frame. Between those steps I installed three different Free Software operating systems on a new laptop. My old Thinkpad is giving up the ghost — it overheats regularly when it’s warmer than 24 degrees or when I run any kind of compile on it — so it is time for a new one. Especially with the Gran Canaria Desktop Summit upcoming, and I want to be able to work while somewhere warm.

Somewhat to my surprise, OpenSolaris works best on the new machine; Kubuntu 8.10 (admittedly that’s an older version) is ok and FreeBSD 7.1 just doesn’t go. I gather that’s related to SATA DVD drives, and FreeBSD 8 snapshots don’t like the drive either. Unfortunately, this whole thing leads to a dilemma: given a nicely working new-ish bicycle and a nicely working new laptop, which do you choose? It’s not safe to code and cycle, kids (unless you’re riding something like this).