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I Want To Ride My Bicycle—Into The Future

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Aerofex hoverbikeFuturists think a lot about what transportation might look like. Will we travel via bullet train or hyperloop? Who and what will take us to space? Are those hoverboards coming anytime soon? jetpacks? In the future, I plan to keep riding my bike, I’ll pass on that smartwheel, thank you very much. The bike as we know it, however, might look drastically different, and they’ll likely be able to do all kinds of things bikes of today can’t.

For cyclists who think that turning wheels on the ground has gotten old, there’s a hover bike in the works. Aerofex is working on a “bike” that looks more like Annakin’s pod racer from The Phantom Menace. Powered by ducted fans, it reaches heights of approximately 15 feet. There’s a conceptual prototype, and the company is now developing a usable version. But unless you’re on Tatooine, the hover bike probably won’t ever enter the consumer market.

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Smart Bike Wheel Takes The Sweat Out Of Your Bike Commute

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FlyklyAs a biker commuter and general cycling enthusiast, I’m excited to see a spate of bike-related gadgets hit the scene. First we had the smart bike lock, which I really wish had been around a couple years ago (RIP, best bike ever). Then we got the awesome, if pricey (though still cheaper than a new noggin), invisible bike helmet. And because good things come in threes, there’s now a smart bike wheel that will help us get to wherever we’re going without getting sweaty.

I’ll admit that the sweat factor is somewhat of a deterrent to biking, and while helmets are obviously important, standard helmets make bike rides even warmer. In the spring and early fall, I show up to work at least 10 minutes early so I have ample time to stop sweating and to make myself look presentable. I also never use one of those old overhead projectors.

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Two Swedish Entrepreneurs Develop An Invisible Bike Helmet

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Hovding helmetI’m an admitted Swedephile. I don’t even care if I made up that word. My ancestors come from Sweden, and when I traveled there, I was overwhelmed by the competence of everyone and everything. Trains are on time to the minute. Every house I saw, even the hostels, had recycling and composting bins. They have electric buses. They’ve got universal health care, free education, and the smallest discrepancy in pay between men and women doing the same jobs. And every Swede I met spoke better English than I do. So now add to the list of Swedish accomplishments the invisible bike helmet. The gal above is wearing one and the guy below is too. If you look really, really hard, you just might be able to make it out.

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Smart Bike Lock Will Thwart Bicycle Thieves

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BitlockAny invention that will help keep my bike safe immediately gets my attention. Sure, Kryptonite locks are all well and good, but they’re not foolproof and I’m always scared about losing the key. It was only a matter of time in this age of smartphones and smartwatches that someone would come up with a smart bike lock.

BitLock uses Bluetooth technology so riders can lock and unlock their bikes with their smartphones. Bitlock’s keyless system connects to a user’s smartphone and ascertains proximity so a user can simply press a button on the Bitlock to lock or unlock it without even taking the smartphone from a pocket or purse. Users can also use the smartphone application to lock or unlock Bitlock if they prefer.