By Yokota Fritz
I've been having some fun with the GoPro Wide Angle Hero Cam. Steve Woo captured his spectacular Wente Criterium Crash over the weekend and was able to do a post-mortem of the crash with his front and rear mounted GoPro.
My rear view of part of my commute isn't nearly as exciting, but it occurs to me that constantly running video of my rides might be helpful in determining fault in bike vs car collisions, and may even assist in catching hit and run drivers.
That red tire, by the way, is Hutchinson's Fusion 2 Pro. Carbon bead makes this folding tire a snap to install, Kevlar belt seems to provide good puncture resistance (though it hasn't gone through my East Palo Alto test road yet), and sticky compound on the sidewalls provide good grip for cornering. This fast tire enabled me to take two minutes from my personal best for the 10 mile trip from Menlo Park to Mountain View.
Here's the second half of my commute, where I cross the Ringwood Avenue pedestrian bridge into Belle Haven then cut across a parking lot and a dirt trail to avoid a couple of lights.
By Yokota Fritz
Stunt cyclists in San Francisco in a Japanese soft drink commercial for Kirin Beverage's Millenium METs soda.
METs is a grapefruit flavored beverage. I'll need to run to my local Japanese supermarket and see if they carry it. Urban Velo.
Urban Velo and Streetsblog also mentioned this old news about the proposed "Idaho stop law" for the state of California. I seem to recall hearing that the MTA BPAC already gave up on looking at this after a flood of negative input from both cyclists and the general public.
I imagine the news that the MTA BPAC was taking a preliminary look at the Idaho stop law was probably released prematurely. For those who want to advocate for this law, I have a couple of ideas:
Get motorcyclists on board. I frequently see motorcycles who are stuck *forever* at a red light. It's a fairly common problem for them. I believe the Idaho law came about from the efforts of groups like ABATE, and bicyclists in the state just happened to sign on and asked to have the law amended for their benefit as well. In California, the motorcycle lobby is fairly influential and well connected.
As a result of a new law that passed last year, Caltrans is required to develop standards to ensure that all new and replaced traffic actuated signal lights are able to detect bicycles and motorcycles. (Though CABO was influential in getting this law passed, the motorcycle lobby was vital in getting this pushed through.) Caltrans is still working on developing these standards, but the fiscal impact of requiring signal actuators that can detect bikes will be extreme -- there's an order of magnitude difference, for example, in the cost of installing loop detectors versus video detectors. If the law was changed to allow cyclists to street red lights as stop signs, I imagine many municipalities would sign on to promote an Idaho stop law, especially if the Caltrans stop light requirement was written to take traffic volumes into account. Bike detecting actuators, for example, might only be required for certain traffic volumes (i.e. high volume throughways like ECR where it's impossible to cross without a light).
By Yokota Fritz
Transportation Alternatives in New York City held its 7th annual Commuter Challenge yesterday. Streetfilms had cameras on each of the car driver, cyclist and public transit user and Elizabeth Press stayed up all night to create the video of the challenge in less than 24 hours!
By Yokota Fritz
The song "Handlebars" by Denver hip hop group the Flobots is amazing. The subtle theme of the song caught me by surprise, and the animated music video accompanying the song serves to drive the point home.
I'll be on the Santa Cruz rail trail bike train tomorrow with my children. I hope you're having a good weekend. And for a final word for this Friday night I give you this recipe for pain: Ride 30 miles on a fixed gear bike in hot weather + jump into a cold pool = excruciating leg cramps!
By Yokota Fritz
The NRDC video demonstrates the correct way to navigate your bike through heavy pedestrian traffic on the sidewalk.
State Farm Insurance shows us what it's like to "swap four wheels for two" in this ad, suggesting an excellent way to save money on insurance and gas prices! (Via, with numerous mentions all over the place.
Farmers Insurance demonstrates a cyclist wearing his business suit assertively taking his place in traffic, taking the lane and signaling his turns on his bike commute. The office worker rides a practical, small tire bike (prefect for multimodal commutes) equipped with fenders.
This more serious video is a cyclist instruction video on The Rights and Duties of Cyclists, from Cyclist View. The video shows cyclists making normal vehicular maneuvers including lane control, lane sharing, left and right turns, through movements and a freeway ramp crossing. This video is intended to show cyclists and motorists how it looks when cyclists act and are treated as vehicle drivers in normal urban traffic in the City of Long Beach, California. I've seen this video posted in a few places over the past few weeks, but I'll give props to Velo Chimp for the reminder.
By Yokota Fritz
Do you want to know your dropout from your downtube and your seat collar from your seatpost? Watch this guide and you will be talking bike in five minutes. The music, created from sampled bike part noises by Greg Johnston, is also really cool.
By Yokota Fritz
I'm a fan of Lucas Brunelle's alleycat cycling videos. Here he is in Stockholm, Sweden.
I found this at Pierre Requiroule's blog, where he writes: "Complètement malade et ça ressemble à une compilation de ce qu’on peut faire de pire à vélo." That's French for "These guys are freakin' maniacs on bikes!" Those Swedes sure like their car horns, and those articulated buses look scary.
And I love the name of Pierre's blog, which is "Tant de belles choses à vélo." That's French for "Cyclelicious" :-)
By Yokota Fritz
I'd like to remind everybody that Steephill.TV has a video clip of the day feature. Just subscribe to the RSS feed there for a bike video of the day. Right now, they feature my ugly mug with a link to the (in)famous "Lost Episode" of the Spokesman podcast.
This video by filmmaker Matt Goldman features great footage of San Francisco DJ Ted Shred bombing down the hills of San Francisco on his singlespeed (freewheeling -- not fixed!) brakeless bike. Shred stops by pushing his shoe into the rear wheel to "Fred Flintstone it." Set to Ted Shred's music, the excellent videography makes this suicidal practice look kinda cool, just like TV forensics dramas make dead bodies look hot and sexy.
By Yokota Fritz
The San Luis Obisbo County Bicycle Coalition has created a series of "Share the Road" public service announcements for broadcast on local TV stations, reminding motorists and cyclists that the roads are for all users to share.
Props to Diane, who saw the ads on television, and Al in Arizona who found the videos on the SLO Bike Coalition website.
San Francisco cops tell cyclists to "take the lane" for safety.
The San Francisco Bicycle Coalition and the San Francisco Police Department worked to create this outstanding police training video on the rights and responsibilities of cyclists in San Francisco. Cyclists are instructed to ride "about four feet away from parked cars when you're riding your bicycle," to report instances of driver intimidation, and report injury accidents. This video is used at the San Francisco Police Academy and at district stations around the city.
By Yokota Fritz
A note from SweetskinZ, makers of some very interesting colorful, reflective tires.
SweetskinZ is asking riders to submit their videos featuring SweetskinZ tires (and you and your buds catching big air or taking some mean spills). What’s in it for you? A cool grand.
The rider who submits the best footage of SweetskinZ tires during the day and night will receive the grand prize - $1,000 bucks. And, the winning video will be shown to thousands of industry insiders at the SweetskinZ booth during Interbike, in Vegas from September 26 – 28, 2007.
The winning video will also be featured on the SweetskinZ website, www.sweetskinz.com. But the best part - anyone who submits a video that meets our contest requirements will be eligible to receive a rebate on every tire featured in the video or a free pair of tires. Yeah, not too shabby, huh?
So what are the requirements? Videos must be at least 1 minute long and clearly feature SweetskinZ tires bold graphics during the day and the reflectivity at night. Entries can be submitted by uploading the video at YouTube.com and by sending them directly to SweetskinZ. Entries must be received by August 17, 2007 to be eligible for the $1,000 grand prize.
Note to SweetskinZ: 3 weeks isn't much time to make a decent video.
Bat for Lashes is the stage name of British songwriter, musician and multi-media artist Natasha Khan. She studied film and music at university, both of which strongly influence her work. I copied that last sentence from a blog somewhere because it's so inane. Enjoy.
I forgot to mention earlier that Doc Logan posted this video too.
By Yokota Fritz
Carlton Reid brings us this amazing video of fixed gear trick riding from 1899. The cyclist rides backward, spins his bars, trackstands and does other tricks for filming by Edison's "Kinetograph," an early motion picture camera. The cyclist would fit right in at a modern alleycat.
By Yokota Fritz
Natasha now has her driver’s licence, so that pretty much makes her an expert. Watch the video for important safety tips for cyclists from a car driver. Natasha tells us why we should avoid opening doors ("I've had to replace mine three times!"), why motorists throw insults and objects at cyclists, and complains about bearded guys on those "lie-down" bikes.
Rear view of my commute
Stupid question which you've probably answered a billion times already: how do you have your camera mounted? Whenever I try to do something like that (with my GorillaPod) the video is unwatchable because of all the vibration and bouncing.
Wow! That looks speedy and car-filled! The footage might come in handy some day for fault determination purposes, but I hope you're never in that situation.
Your lucky that you have bike lanes the whole way. Here in DC I have only a .25 mile stretch on my commute.
@ethan: the quality of GoPro's video is pretty poor, but their genius is in their mounting options, and they've thought of *everything*. In these examples the video is mounted to the wishbone above the seat stays. It's not going anywhere. I'll post more about GoPro's mounting options later, but it works really well.
@Missy: This video shows my low traffic route!
hah, is that Christian rock you're righteously battling the traffic to?
I'm, err, coveting this toy now. Can you post pictures of the GoPro mounted on your bike?Hawk Nelson, "Let's Dance."
I prefer peaceful co-existence to battle. :-)
I'll post photos later, maybe this week if I get a chance.
Good stuff Fritz.
While I *never* ride a bike (I say that every post) I find myself yelling at bicyclists to "*take the lane*" every once in a while. Silly amateurs.
Bicycle kung fu video
They need some studded Nokians.
=v= BMX movies are better when they star Nicole Kidman at age 15. For skinnier-tired celeste-colored bikes, Jackie Chan is da man.
Whew. I thought I was the only person who kept running into and knocking down those blue, empty plastic barrels.
David Byrne's bike racks
Very cool. Would be nice to see some municipality do a public art project that incorporates artist-designed racks. As with SF's "Hearts of San Francisco" or Chicago's "Cows on Parade," but with utility built into the art.
but the racks look awesome!
Crazy urban cyclists sell soft drinks in Japan
I have never understood Japanese commercials (and their accompanying music).
Urban Velo and Streetsblog are like totally behind the times. Cyclelicious is where it's at!
...you are quite right...the scofflaw article is a very good & truthful read...
...wondering what kind of impact it would have if only 'certain' municipalities allowed for the idaho rule...perhaps one more opportunity for more bicycle/ vehicle negativity...
...& not to be negative about the situation but i have noticed more confrontational situations lately even though i stop at 99% of the stop signs i encounter & make sure i acknowledge any driver w/ a wave & a thank you, when i'm offered the right of way...
...some folks seem to work w/ the simple concept of common courtesy but i'm finding more & more of the old "i'm bigger & surrounded by metal, so get outta my way" attitude...
...perhaps now that there are more published articles regarding the situation, folks are "sensitive" in regard to it, but awareness notwithstanding, whether it's group rides, single commuters or unaware 'newbies' on any kind of bike, riders constantly blowing stop signs does nothing towards creating any common goodwill...
...& i'm not condoning in any way, shape or form, the behavior of the motor vehicular public, in general (read that article) but perhaps the rising cost of gas, in particular & living, in general is adding to the mix...
For getting the Idaho laws passed elsewhere: don't bother with the red light part (except maybe clarifying that road users may proceed safely through an intersection if their vehicle is not sensed).
The stop sign law gets far more support from the cycling community, while the red-light part brings up the cracks within the community.
Yeah, but the kewl thing about the commercial was the it was SO '80s! Did you see the cars, and the "transit" bus; of course, the clothes, especially the Fresh Prince rip-off.
Yeah, I thought the buses were weird. They're tour buses, aren't they?
I wonder if it's an old commercial for an old product? Busy week for me so I won't be able to drop by the Japanese market until this weekend.
San Francisco fixed gear riding
Great. A Mash SF look-alike glamorizing asshole bike behavior. Freestyle tricks are cool, no doubt, but PLEASE keep 'em out of traffic!
The annual car vs bike vs transit challenge
This reminds me of a short I saw at the Bicycle Film Fest a few years ago called Yogurt vs. Gasoline.
I had missed that Neistat production -- pretty good!
In California the motorcyclist would have filtered through to the front of the line at every red light.
...lovely jamie kicked as w/out even trying...props...
bikes rule... in the beginning she was holding a gray helmet, in the end there is a blue helmet on the bars, and during the middle she rode with no helmet?
Can we see specs on the bike? Close up would be nice too. How about stats from her computer? Tire pressure? Heck, what kind of tires? Personally, here in the west I like Panaracers but I imagine on the East Avocets are still popular.
I can ride my bike with no handlebars
...just riding in this heat (it IS only may, right ???) is painful or at least quite uncomfortable...climbed a few miles up the backside of the ridge here about mid-afternoon w/ the intent of going further but wussed & decided "nah, think i'll just go back down & spin on the flats for a while... ...definitely left me feeling toasted...
...btw, fritz...you better be careful...do that in the ocean & you might get yerself in some serious trouble...
...& please give us the full skinny later on about the bike train thingy...sounds like it could be fun...
Thanks for posting this song! I ended up buying the album but now I can't get that freaking song out of my head. I was riding up Old La Honda this morning singing "I can ride my bike with no handlebar... with no handlebars..." I can't decided what's worse, the burning of my legs or the burning of that song in my ears.
I live to serve, Chris. I'm glad you enjoy the song enough to drive you nuts.
Panda portrait how to video
what's a panda?
"What's a panda?"
Oh yeah, different social circles. Sorry about that. I should explain.
Megan rides here bike around Austin, Texas. Online, she goes by the nickname "Chainsaw Panda Kill Kill." She started posting self portraits of parts of herself and her bike to Flickr. Somebody (I think it was Timmy but it could have been Yohei Morita) started calling these "Panda Portraits" and thus a new form of artistic expression came into being.
Kinda like having a penguin on the porch (whihc is our "means anything you want!" phrase... is that your real hair or just a penguin on your porch? )
What, no "shadow panda" ???
Shame on you, riding with no hands in traffic.
Hope you have a great weekend too.
Fun bicycle commute video
Pretty cool view of the commute. Although what did the coworkers think of wearing a helmet through the office?Here's the coworker reaction photo.
Bicycle propaganda videos
I always felt the State Farm commercial took slight digs at bikers.
The first time I saw the one where the guy is on the kids bike going through traffic it really ticked me off. It essentially says that bikes are toys and cars are "real" transportation...and who would ride a bike unless they were forced to due to a car wreck...I'm in the opposite position now :(
Bicycle parts video
BIke more, drive less
Lucas Brunelle in Sweden
Hi Fritz, thanx for the link! Velicieux does not sound very good and Cyclelicious was taken, so I had to find something else... I'm glad you like it!
That was some pretty impressive riding there! I think some of the horns were warranted though :)
Fixie hipster rock anthem
Bicycle video clip of the day
Brakeless singlespeed in San Francisco
...O M G...i concur...INSANE...
...& i hardly ever capitalize...
that is so freaking stupid it hurts.
At least the guy wears a helmet! Oh, wait... nevermind.
Yeah.... I would have to say that is not even "cool-stupid" just stupid.
I am not quite getting the significance of the shoe. With all that testosterone and GUTS, shouldn't a building or a moving bus SUFFICE?
Please don't feed the pigeons!
I remember seeing this at last years Bicycle Film Festival in Chicago. It's insane and yet, it makes a compelling film.
So dumb, so dumb.
It's really not cool, because he is endangering any pedestrians he is near. I hope he realizes that he is going to hurt somebody some day.
This was made in 2005. If he's either dead or maimed or not riding anymore.
Chain snap video
'Share the Road' TV ads
Excellent! Ads like these should have been common on tv for years...what took so long? Jack
SFPD bicycle training video
Yes a step in the right direction. However, rules and enforcement are two different things... let us know when the latter is used to defend and support cyclists' rights. Thanks, Jack
We need an initiative like that here in Melbourne. There is quite a bit of agro between motorists and cyclists at the moment.
A few criticisms:
1. San Francisco Police Officers - not that good at acting.
2. "I'll catch up to the motorist, you catch up to the guy on the bicycle." simply means "I'm going to stop up here, you go ALL THE WAY down the street to get that guy". He was greedy by taking the easy catch.
3. When the police officer catches up to the guy down the street, if you look further down the street, there is a car parked facing the wrong direction. I know in many cities that is an offense that can be ticketed.
4. "Bet you coffee" is illegal gambling. The police are not setting a good example.
5. At 6:16 remaining, there is obviously a car with it's hazards on in the bike lane.
6. At 4:56 remaining, you can clearly see the same car parked illegally in the street.
7. The cyclist who was intimidated should have kept what was thrown at him. A littering fine would add insult to injury.
8. The girl hit that hit the car is wearing a microphone on her sweatshirt. Seems sketchy, maybe she's working undercover for the SFPD in some type of insurance fraud scheme.
9. When the group exclaims "Bikes Belong In Traffic, Share The Road", they are obviously taking up the entire road. This can create an unsafe environment for all and is probably illegal.
In all seriousness, it's a great training video for SFPD.
A good initiative. Thanks for sharing. I enjoyed it very much. Let's hope that drivers get a taste of it as well.
Thanks for the post; cool video. It would be nice if they'd include something along those lines in driver's education courses. I've had 3 kids go through driver's ed and none of them have every gotten any information on how to drive around cyclists. I'll try to remember this link for the next 2 kid sessions.
Three CONSTRUCTIVE criticisms:
1) Dooring is NOT the most common bike/car crash. The left-turning car clipping the opposite-direction bike is the MOST common.
2) NOBODY, cops included, is using rear-view mirror.
3) If bikes are allowed the FULL use of traffic lanes, wat up with da bike lanes? Suppose SF just lose 'em!
Win $1000! Sweetskinz video contest
Bicycle used to move GMail
Short skirt and shimmery tights
Haha. Aren't we all just bastions of originality.
Let's see ... mix some Bjork with Phil Spector and throw in a little Ditty Bops (the cycling, of course) and you get this!
I like the Ditty Bops, too. Less angsty.
Cyclist fashion show video
1899 trick cycling video
I just love this. Very cool.
Cyclist tips from a car driver