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Week in Review–November 17th, 2014

The Week in Review is a collection of both all the goodness I’ve written during the past week around the internet, as well as a small pile of links I found interesting – generally endurance sports related. I’ve often wondered what to do with all of the coolness that people write, and while I share a lot of it on Twitter, Facebook, and Google Plus, this is a better forum for sending it on to y’all. Most times these different streams don’t overlap, so be on the lookout at all these places for good stuff!

So with that, let’s get into the action!

DCRainmaker.com posts in the past week:

Here’s all the goodness that ended up on the main page of DCRainmaker.com this past week:

Sunday: Week in Review–November 9th, 2014
Monday: 5 Random Things I Did This Weekend
Thursday: The 2014 GoPro’s In-Depth Review: Hero4 Black, Hero4 Silver, GoPro Hero
Friday: Photo of the day: My Gigantic Dubai Palm Tree Run
Friday: Polar rolls out connection for developers, Apple Health & Google Fit integration
Monday: 5 Random Things I Did This Weekend

In case you missed it: My Interview On The Real Starky

Last week I did a podcast with The Real Starky, which is a bit like Howard Stern meets triathlon.  Fun stuff, most of my focus wasn’t so much on gadgets, but on more of my background/college/job/etc and random other tidbits that non-gadget focused readers might find interesting.  Go forth and enjoy here!

Stuff that I found interesting around the interwebs:

Here’s a not-so-small smattering of all the random things that I stumbled on while doing my civic duty to find the end of the Internet:

1) FIFA Looks at Itself and Nods in Approval: Ahh yes, no better way to investigate wrong-doing, than to investigate oneself.

2) Fitbit data being used in court: Pretty interesting case, though, I think the logic behind the usage data is pretty thin from a conclusions standpoint.  But still, fascinating nonetheless.

3) Triathlete PROFile for Callum Millward: I’m sure many of you tri-focused folks will have seen some of Callum’s interview series (where he interviews others).  Good stuff.  This interview/profile of him is actually pretty interesting. Not your typical pro fluff piece.

4) USAT Lawsuit Fiasco: Dan Empfield gives a good primer as to the current mess going on with USAT and the disagreement with some of the board members.

5) Solar Panel Bike Path: As pointed out in this article, while perhaps well meaning, this isn’t exactly…a shining example of funding efficiency.

6) Garmin sells Kansas City Chiefs Vivofit bands: Ignoring the annoying fact that the Chiefs beat the Seahawks on Sunday, this move is interesting. They don’t appear to offer any other team bands (i.e. NFL/NBA/MLB/etc…), but I like the idea.  I’d imagine that having Garmin.com only sales of team bands would be pretty interesting.  Albeit in this case it appears only bundles are sold, and not just the band itself.  There’s many 3rd parties that do pretty bands for the Fitbit lineup (The Girl just bought one actually), so this seems like a logical direction for Garmin.

7) Germany threaten jail for athletes under new doping law: Very nice, I like the way my neighbors think.  Now, can we get the Italians onboard?

8) My Life Vs…a GoPro: I saw this a while back, but a friend reminded me of it this morning. Hilariously accurate.

9) Thieves using Strava data to pinpoint bikes? That’s taking it to a whole new level.  Of course, you can easily enable Strava privacy settings to hide your home location. (via CyclingTips)

10) How they install a Capital Bike Share Station: Cool to see the system continue to expand, especially into/near where I lived while in the DC area.  This post goes step by step on how they install a Bikeshare station.

Crowd Funded Projects of Athletic Note:

I regularly sift through Kickstarter and Indiegogo (plus a few others on occasion) looking for sports projects.  If you’re unfamiliar with projects, read my detailed post on how I decide which projects I personally back.  Note that as always with crowd funded projects, assume the project will be late and will under-deliver on features. Thus far, on the numerous products I’ve helped ‘fund’ (except a leather bike handle), that’s been the case.

Impossible: A folding bike that can fit in a backpack

Bamboobee Build It Yourself (BIY) Bike Kit

Sports Technology Software/Firmware Updates This Week:

Each week I quickly highlight some of the new firmware, app, software and website service updates that I see go out. If you’re a sports technology company and release an update – shoot me a quick note (just one liners is perfect, or Tweet it at me is even better) and I’ll make mention of it here. If I don’t know about it, I won’t be able to post about it. Sound good?

TrainerRoad releases iOS app: Yup, go forth and download.  Preview back here in this post.  Now, if only they’d release that nifty mount attachment…

Garmin Edge 1000 Beta Firmware: Adds in new landscape mode, plus a slew of other things.  As always, remember, it’s beta. Might not be a smooth ride.

Garmin VIRB Edit Update: Another huge slew of features. I continue to be really impressed with how much stuff this team has added in the 12 months since release.

Polar V800 Swimming Update: This adds in indoor swim mode.  I’ll be touching on this later in the week as well in a full post.  Also note that Polar is expecting an update as well shortly that should address some power drain issues a small portion of the population is seeing with last week’s update.  The update also brought daily activity updates and a few other items.

Thanks for reading!

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31 Comments

  1. Yucko

    Does the “impossible” bike only coast? Or can you actually go uphill? Does it have actual brakes or just “Flintstone-style” stopping? In the video, it looked like a “balance bike” (kid’s pre-learn-to-ride bike). Nonetheless, pretty neat engineering and nice design lines.

    • sebas

      By the looks of it you only get a build-set for the frame, without the fork or any other components.
      In general I like the idea, but having worked extensively with composites over the last few year, I’m very sceptical. If you don’t what you are doing, building a bike like that could be very dangerous.

    • sebas

      ups sorry I was talking about the bamboo bike….

    • MattB

      It’s an electrical scooter rather than a pedal bike. I agree, the video does a pretty bad job of explaining that, I initially thought they were coasting downhill on a ‘nearly’ flat section too. It will do 12 miles an hour for 45 mins on a charge, but they don’t say what effect hills have on battery life or speed.

  2. Bruce Burkhalter

    The downside with Strava privacy settings is that the people you ride with need to have your house in their privacy zones. If you ride together to/from your house, I can see your home based on the other person’s Strava info.

    Maybe not a huge deal but something to be aware of if you really want privacy. One nice thing is that privacy zones are “global”. If you create a new privacy zone, it will apply to all previous rides and not just new ones.

    • David

      Actually it’s a little worse than that. The privacy zone for your friends at your house will not kick in, unless they end their ride and start a new one when they get to your house. The privacy zone does not apply when just passing through. I have a similar issue when I run multiple laps around the block, but only take my dog with me on one. If I just dash into the house to drop him off, even pausing, it will show where my house is. So I pause/resume at the top of the street. (And generally meet my friends at their houses).

    • Jono

      The privacy zone is a circle of known radius. If you leave home and come back by a different route you trace begins and ends at two different points. There are only two circles of the given radius that go through these two points. It is quite easy to see which one is the actual one. So make sure you put your neighbor’s address at the centre of your privacy zone.

      It would be handy and secure for strava to allow the user to determine the radius of their privacy zones.

      While we’re at it, why not have private ride option. Keep the kilometre and segment achievements but not spam your friends feed.

    • James White

      I’m not sure the privacy zone circle provides much protection, as your approximate village or town is still identifiable.

      Assuming you use your real name on Strava, it often doesn’t take much googling to find an address.

      Lots of people I know use nicknames instead to make it harder.

    • David

      Actually, I’m pretty sure you can specify the radius. But even so, I think if someone can find three “ends”, it doesn’t matter. They can triangulate even if the radius is unknown. What would actually be better is for Strava to assign a random privacy radius per end-point per ride. But that’s probably more effort than they actually want to take. If you care that much about your privacy, you probably shouldn’t be posting any public rides on Strava.

  3. Carlos

    Hi Ray,

    Have you already an idea or view about the Jawbone Up3, it’s sounds like a gamechanger in the world of activity trackers because of all the new sensors in it. On this site I can’t find anything about this stuff.
    Thanks,

    Carlos

    • It’s hard to say. It doesn’t ship for a while. I know much of the tech crowd loves the Jawbone Up, and I’ve tried all of the variants, but for me, I like being able to see on the device how many steps/etc I’ve done. But, to each their own.

      Nonetheless, I’ve ordered one and will await it for review.

    • Carlos

      Thanks for the fast reply and I’m looking forward to that review.

  4. V800 related: I had the issue of batterry draining.
    Solved by a soft reset. Really strange and annonying to have to do a reset after an update. And definitely not the most rassuring thing just before a race. But now, I can fully appreciate the new swimming options (finally ;))

  5. JJones

    Re Trainer Road…you mentioned in the iOS app preview that the Wahoo Fitness ANT+ adapter and the Wahoo TICKR HR strap can act as a bridge. Can the RFLKT+ use its bridging capability with Trainer Road as well? If so, how would that be setup? I have never used it as a bridge.

  6. Eric Hanneken

    I’m not comfortable with the idea of putting someone in a cage because he violated the rules of a sports competition. Is there some reason dopers can’t be adequately handled through contracts and civil courts?

    • Apparently not, since it’s not stopping people.

      Also, I look at it as theft. They stole from others to be on the podium and take home the prizes.

    • Eric Hanneken

      Good point about theft. Some–though not all–users of PEDs clearly demonstrate a level of mens rea.

      Even so, I think sending them to prison is the wrong response. Civil judgements may not have put an end to cheating, but neither will criminalization, and I still see room for improvement in testing and (if necessary) the size of the damages awarded to the cheaters’ victims. If we ever discover that imprisoning people is the only way to enforce the rules, competition organizers should probably just lift the ban on PEDs.

    • True. And I suppose that does bring up the valid point that I don’t really feel like spending tax dollars to put someone like that in jail. Thus, we all lose.

      Perhaps if financial penalties were government driven rather than sports org driven, it’d carry more weight.

    • Ben

      It will be interesting if Germany wins it’s bid for the 2024 Olympics and catch any dopers. Perhaps instead of jail there could be rotten fruit pelting while dopers are locked in stocks as part of the closing ceremony. 😉

  7. Ray Wright

    Love the Virb Edit software. Do you know of a program that would allow me to put my fly6 video in a window on the Virb video? PIP style.

    Keep up the great work. Your reviews, and this Blog in general, are a great resource for the “active” crowd.

    Raymond

    • I think the Sony Action cam software allows that, but I’ve gotta dig a bit. I’d be curious if you find something though.

    • Ray Wright

      Ray,
      Poked around and found this: Wondershare.com/video-editor/ and it seems super easy. Played around with the free version and made a PIP video in about 5 min (weird garmin zip lining video with a Fly6 sprint PIP, but it works. Bought the full version so we will see.

  8. raychu

    the nifty mount attachment :
    link to sram.com

    i tried loctite it onto a $3 iphone case, came out when i tried to lift the bike with the phone… anyone else got other ideas of how to stick this thing onto a case?

    • michael cybrynski

      i’m not an expert, but i don’t think loctite is the appropriate glue for this application. i’ve modified the adapter you’ve referred to for other applications and have been very successful. try this: 1: use a Dremel with a cutting disc to remove the “605/705” channels from the adapter. this will give you a large flat surface for the glue. i recommend wearing goggles and using pliers to hold the adapter to avoid accidents. 2: i’ve used J-B Weld epoxy that i purchased in Home Depot. look for the “original cold-weld formula” steel reinforced epoxy. 3960 psi strength. 20-25 set time. 15-24 hr cure time. 3: i would suggest using the most rigid iphone case you can find and sanding the area where you plan to use the epoxy. hope this helps.

  9. Victor

    Curious about something, I know you have done a review of the new action cams and mentioned that the VIRB is a good option when comparing the GoPro Basic. I know groupon was having a deal on the VIRB (99) and I want to get one (or two), but I know it doesn’t have gps as well as other features that the VIRB Elite has. Although I saw that it listed as yes on their specs? Has this changed from your review.

    Also is it possible to link two VIRB’s and have them record at the same time. Any suggestions in the right direction would be great.

    Thanks.

    • The VIRB (base) doesn’t have GPS, whereas the Elite does. I fully expect to see $99 again next week.

      And yup, you can pair two VIRB’s to record at the same time. Super-easy. I believe I cover that in my in-depth review of the VIRB, in terms of doing primary/secondary pieces.

    • Victor

      Thanks for reply. You did, but I wasn’t sure if it was Elite exclusive.

    • Nope, all good on all units. I did a bunch of shots on the bike with the cheaper one being the secondary in the back. But either can control either.

  10. Adithya

    I am planning to buy my first fitness watch. I don’t know which one to choose. Polar v800 vs Garmin ForeRunner 920XT. I swim in outdoor 50m pools mostly and sometimes in 20.6m, 25m and 35m pools. I plan to start cycling in another month or twol with power meters. Yet to purchase a cycle. I also want to use it as every day watch and fitness tracking. I have samsung note 3 phone for pairing if that is an option. Hopefully, if the polar v 800 update is reviewed, I can make a decision by comparing with the 920xt.

    • Right now you’re slightly more limited on Bluetooth Smart power meters than ANT+. So that’s a consideration. In general, the FR920XT is the most capable multisport GPS watch out there today in terms of straight features. Over time, the Polar V800 may catch up – but nobody could argue it’s there today (no doubt they’ve done good work, but they just simply started so far back).