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Heads-Up Displays Move From Cockpits to Cyclists' Helmets(7 posts)

Heads-Up Displays Move From Cockpits to Cyclists' Helmetsohmk1
Dec 10, 2003 7:35 AM
From the New York Times:


December 8, 2003

Heads-Up Displays Move From Cockpits to Cyclists' Helmets

AN FRANCISCO, Dec. 7 - Fighter pilots have long been able to view flight data projected onto jet windshields within their line of sight. Soon recreational motorcyclists and bicyclists will be able to take advantage of that technology.

Motion Research, a Seattle company founded in 1993 by a former racecar driver, Dominic Dobson, said that next spring it would begin selling an inexpensive information display system to be attached to a motorcycle helmet.

The Sportvue head-mounted display will allow riders to see speed, r.p.m. and gear position without taking their eyes off the road. The system gathers speed information from a global positioning satellite receiver attached to the rear of the helmet.

The design, based on a patent co-developed by Tom Furness, one of the pioneers of head-mounted display technology, uses a lens and mirror and backlit liquid crystal display to give the viewer the illusion that the information displayed in the periphery of one eye is projected in the distance.

Mr. Dobson founded Motion Research when he was racing Indianapolis and Formula One cars, and his initial idea was to use the display technology for racecar drivers. But the cost of producing such displays was prohibitively high a decade ago. He retired in 1998 and recently picked the idea up again because the costs of the technology have fallen significantly.

"We realized we could build it far more cheaply today," he said. "Not much changed in the technology itself. What happened was the cost of manufacturing changed."

Today, he said, the technology is beginning to appear in the consumer market, both in wearable systems and in some cars, like certain models of the Cadillac with systems that project driving information onto the windshield.

But Motion Research will be the first company to attempt a truly low-cost consumer application. The price of the motorcycle Sportvue will be from $249 to $349.

The bicycle version of Sportvue, which will be introduced sometime after the motorcycle system, will project speed, distance traveled and heart rate information, like current cyclometers, and be from $150 to $199, Mr. Dobson said. He said the company was also in discussions with helmet manufacturers to integrate the display systems into helmets.

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take it to conclusion...DougSloan
Dec 10, 2003 7:55 AM
Ultimately, it would be really great to have a head up display with not only the essential functions, but also power, GPS, and maps. We'll see it some day, I'll bet. Heck, might as well incorporate a rear view camera, too. Maybe even browse the internet with voice commands?

Might be good. . .Mike P
Dec 10, 2003 8:06 AM
but I'd hate to be in a paceline with someone watching a movie.

That's what you want to hear in a paceline...Scot_Gore
Dec 10, 2003 8:47 AM
Hey, I just sniped a great frame off e-bay !!!!!

take it to conclusion...wspokes
Dec 10, 2003 8:11 AM
Maybe even browse the internet with voice commands?

Maybe leave the above off for now...cell phones are hazardous enough ; )
Dec 10, 2003 9:50 AM
technology invades my private time again! I don't want to be wired when riding (though a cell is nice for emergencies). I need to unplug once in a while.
For people not frustrated enough by Flight Deck...Cory
Dec 10, 2003 9:05 AM
Hot stuff, an electronic gadget to save cyclists from having to move their eyes while they ride. If only they could include a cadence feature for people who can't tell how fast they're pedaling, and maybe an indicator for those who can't tell if they're in the right gear....