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Old 10-08-05, 08:46 AM   #1
ViciousCycle
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Beware of the Internet hoax known as "vehicular cyclists"

In everyday usage, the term “vehicular” is typically only used in contexts such as “vehicular homicide” or “vehicular manslaughter.” Yet, bizarrely on the Internet, there are cyclists who allegedly refer to themselves as “vehicular.” In real-life, I have met plenty of year-round cyclists, but I have never met anyone who self-identifies as a “vehicular cyclist.” This led me to the theory that “vehicular cyclists” might be an Internet hoax, like the Nigerian bank transfer scam. However, finding a way of testing this theory proved difficult, as it is difficult to conclusively prove the non-existence of something. But then I got lucky. I found a computer programmer who revealed that he had re-written the old artificial intelligence program ELIZA to function as a Vehicular Cyclist. This provides circumstantial evidence that Vehicular Cyclists on the Internet might simply be automated software programs. The following is a transcript from one of these modified ELIZA programs.

ELIZA: Hello. I am VEHICULAR CYCLIST. How can I help you?
YOU: I walked my bike across the pedestrian walkway on one of Chicago’s drawbridges because the bridge was slippery with snow, and I sliced my hand open on the same bridge last year and had to have 20 stitches.
ELIZA: What resemblance do you see?
YOU: The walkway was safe.
ELIZA: Please ride on the main bridge as a vehicle.
YOU: Sometimes, I have to rely on my own judgment.
ELIZA: Why do you say your own judgment?
YOU: Vehicular cyclists sometimes offer bad advice.
ELIZA: Please follow all of my advice.
YOU: Your advice leads to injury.
ELIZA: What about your own advice led to injury?
YOU: It didn't. By using the walkway, I avoided injury.
ELIZA: Can you please shut up? I am trying to offer advice, not listen to you.
YOU: Why don’t you listen?
ELIZA: Perhaps I will listen in good time.
YOU: When will that be?
ELIZA: Does that question interest you?
YOU: You're actually asking for my opinion?
ELIZA: No, I’ve been told to developing listening skills. Perhaps pretending to listen to you may help.
YOU: Do you realize that Vehicular Cycling doesn't have all of the answers?
ELIZA: Oh, i realize that vehicular cycling does have all of the answers.
YOU: Reboot program.
ELIZA: Resistance is futile! I am Vehicular Cyclist of Borg. Your common sense as you know it is over!
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Old 10-08-05, 08:51 AM   #2
iamtim
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Heh.
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Old 10-08-05, 09:50 AM   #3
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I think much of VC is obvious- therefore it seems a bit ridiculous that someone "coined the word" VC. It seems much of it has been carried to an extreme here.

Frankly, I find the term VC bandied about in a self-righteous manner more often than not.

I do, however, agree with many "tenents" of VC- but Forrester's site is a bit provocative-

Quote:
Cycling advocacy is for cyclists. Bicycle advocacy is not cycling advocacy.
Bikeways neither make cycling much safer nor reduce the skill required. They probably do the reverse. Government knows that bikeways don't make cycling safer, but it uses the public superstition that they do.
The government's bicycle program is designed by superstition for the convenience of motorists. Cyclists react to the government's bicycle and bikeway programs.
The government's bicycle design standard encourages riding at night without lights. The government's bicycle design standard is based on engineering incompetence.
Proper traffic laws treat cyclists as drivers of vehicles. Government bike planners mix cyclists with pedestrians.
Effective Cycling is safer, faster, and better. Teaching Effective Cycling to all ages
While in principle these are mostly true, it seems there is a gentler and less perjorative way to express such views.

Last edited by filtersweep; 10-08-05 at 10:05 AM.
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Old 10-08-05, 09:59 AM   #4
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"vehicular cycling" does not rule out walking. That's a strawman argument.
"vehicular cycling" does not encourage riding on surfaces that can't be negotiated safely due to rain, snow, ice, or oil. That's another strawman argument.

Don't you think it's dishonest to make things up just to argue against?
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Old 10-08-05, 11:50 AM   #5
I-Like-To-Bike
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ViciousCycle
Yet, bizarrely on the Internet, there are cyclists who allegedly refer to themselves as “vehicular.” In real-life, I have met plenty of year-round cyclists, but I have never met anyone who self-identifies as a “vehicular cyclist.”
Related to the subject "Internet Hoax," is the size and wherabouts of the mystery population of vehicular cyclists who supposedly "fare better" than all other cyclists and ride with only a tiny fraction of the "crashes" of all others. It is the fantastic record of safety and satisfaction of this mystery population that inspires the proponents of the "hoax." These same hoax enthusiasts neglect to mention in their ceaseless self-promotion that the mystery population has never been defined, let alone identified in any study. In addition, no performance metrics have been defined, let alone measured, for "crashes," "faring best" or anything else for the mystery population. Skepticism about the hoax-like promotion techniques are met with outrage and wimpering about personal insults and groundless attacks.
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Old 10-08-05, 12:01 PM   #6
trackhub
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It could all be the work of the Masons, the Illuminatti, or the cigarette smoking dude from "the X-Files"
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Old 10-08-05, 01:06 PM   #7
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Have you guys seen the shriners in their minature motorized golf carts and scooters in tight formation? There's the REAL anti bike conspirators! but boy, do they know how to VC!
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Old 10-08-05, 01:17 PM   #8
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recursive hoax
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