Innovation with bicycles

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Wednesday, January 09, 2008
By Yokota Fritz


What a really really cool idea: Ride your bike to the store, grab a shopping cart and fill it with groceries, pay for the groceries, then roll the cart out to the parking lot, where you hook it to your bicycle.
Shoppers at a Cambridge supermarket are being asked to saddle up for a new green initiative.

Waitrose in Hauxton Road, Trumpington, has teamed up with the city council to provide special trailers to allow cyclists to transport their shopping home using pedal power.

Shoppers will be able to fill up a trailer as they walk around the store and simply hitch it onto the back of their bikes when they have paid.

The free-of-charge trailer will then have to be returned within three days.
Read the full story here. Via Grist.

A fun bicycle powered tennis ball launcher. Via.

Here's something cool I saw today: A backpack with a built in solar panel.

Solar powered backpack

I can potentially use this to recharge batteries for my lights or camera while I'm cycling to work. It will be available at the company store in a few weeks, I'm told. Seen at the 2008 Eco Summit.

Urban Velo describes Bilinky's S & S couplings, while James @ Bicycle Design contemplates breakaway frames for biking during his travels.

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Comments:
A couple months ago I saw somewhere about flexible solar panels that could be added to jackets, etc for charging gadgets. One of the examples was charging an iPod while skiing. My first reaction was that it was just crazy. I go into the backcountry to get away from gadgets.

Then I thought of self supported races like the Great Divide Race where you either need a huge number of batteries or a way to charge them. That's when I decided they could be cool.
 
don't care about the solar panel, but I'd love a backpack with a Sun Logo.
 
...props to everyone involved w/ the shopping cart project...people are thinking outside the box (literally) & that's a good thing...

...i saw what looked like a flexible (roll-up) solar panel laid over the rear pack of a well equipped touring bike (wish i could remember the site)...i'd leave the i-pod at home, but lights & a cell-phone for emergencies would definitely benefit...
 
I've been waiting for little solar options to keep evolving... saw the backpack a year ago or so online somewhere, and Larry Varney had a solar kit he used on GITAP to keep his gizmos charged.
Now, the tennis ball launcher... obviously that design was commissioned by somebody in the military or an underground group who really wants to launch somethign entirely different. A mobile version would be nice - could take care of those pesky mutts if you had good aim!
 
You want a bike-powered ball launcher? I gotcher ball launcher here, pal...
 
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