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Old 05-11-08, 06:58 AM   #1
Retro Grouch 
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AHA! I think that I've figured it out!

Why I'm so attracted to bikes that is.

I'm a man with an analog mind who is living in a digital era. Recently a bicycling friend who is an educator asked me out of the blue if I was a visual learner. I'd never thought of it in those terms before, but I am. Every good idea that I've ever had came to me as a picture in my head. I'm pretty good with things that have chains and sprockets but anything electronic might as well be magic. I'm dyslexic with numbers. It generally takes me around 6 months before I can remember a new telephone number.

Bicycles are the one thing in life that is still analog. I'm comfortable with bikes. They're like mama's meatloaf.
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Old 05-11-08, 07:23 AM   #2
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I'm sure glad it's not like my mother's meatloaf. Dry, crumbly and burnt to the side of the pan. Until I started cooking for myself, I never knew you didn't have to chisel and scrape meatloaf out of the pan.
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Old 05-11-08, 07:27 AM   #3
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My bikes, and probably yours, RG, are analog, but it is easy to see the trend toward digital bikes these days.
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Old 05-11-08, 07:39 AM   #4
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Yep, I'm kinda in the same boat.

Can hardly wait 'til electronic shifting starts getting popular. It'll be a cold day in hell when I convert to it.
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Old 05-11-08, 08:17 AM   #5
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I like digital.............my car has a digital communications port..................the sunroof.
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Old 05-11-08, 08:27 AM   #6
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My bikes, and probably yours, RG, are analog, but it is easy to see the trend toward digital bikes these days.
I'll admit to having index shifting on most of my bikes but that's not really digital. The thing that makes it work is cable tension. That's the ultimate analog tweak.
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Old 05-11-08, 08:47 AM   #7
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I'll admit to having index shifting on most of my bikes but that's not really digital. The thing that makes it work is cable tension. That's the ultimate analog tweak.
The thing that makes it work is your finger...............that's digital...........
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Old 05-11-08, 09:12 AM   #8
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My odometer has fritzed out completely 3* times here in Kansas from the lightning storms. I go out to my bike, and it's blinking, and the only way I can get it to work again is to completely re-set it. The last time I didn't even bother to reset the wheel size.

I'm going back to that clicky wheel odometer that attaches to your front stays.
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Old 05-11-08, 09:14 AM   #9
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I like digital.............my car has a digital communications port..................the sunroof.
Excellent.
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Old 05-11-08, 09:29 AM   #10
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Digital bikes?

From Snow Crash
Smartwheels use sonar, laser range finding and millimeter wave radar to identify mufflers and other debris. Each one consists of a hub with many tiny spokes. Each spoke telescopes into five sections. On the end is a squat foot, rubber tread on the bottom, swiveling on a ball joint. As the wheel rolls, the feet plant themselves one at a time, almost glomming into one continuous tire. If you surf over a bump, the spokes contract to roll over it. If you surf over a pothole, the rubber prongs probe its asphalt depths. Either way, the shock is thereby absorbed, no thuds, smacks, vibrations, or clunks
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Old 05-11-08, 09:43 AM   #11
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Digital bikes?

From Snow Crash
Smartwheels use sonar, laser range finding and millimeter wave radar to identify mufflers and other debris. Each one consists of a hub with many tiny spokes. Each spoke telescopes into five sections. On the end is a squat foot, rubber tread on the bottom, swiveling on a ball joint. As the wheel rolls, the feet plant themselves one at a time, almost glomming into one continuous tire. If you surf over a bump, the spokes contract to roll over it. If you surf over a pothole, the rubber prongs probe its asphalt depths. Either way, the shock is thereby absorbed, no thuds, smacks, vibrations, or clunks
Now that's just sick!
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Old 05-11-08, 09:46 AM   #12
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I like watches and old cuckoo clocks too.
And beer, which is best served in round containers.
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Old 05-11-08, 04:34 PM   #13
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Digital bikes?

From Snow Crash
Smartwheels use sonar, laser range finding and millimeter wave radar to identify mufflers and other debris. Each one consists of a hub with many tiny spokes. Each spoke telescopes into five sections. On the end is a squat foot, rubber tread on the bottom, swiveling on a ball joint. As the wheel rolls, the feet plant themselves one at a time, almost glomming into one continuous tire. If you surf over a bump, the spokes contract to roll over it. If you surf over a pothole, the rubber prongs probe its asphalt depths. Either way, the shock is thereby absorbed, no thuds, smacks, vibrations, or clunks
Rule #1 from the immutable rules of lasers: "The optimum number of lasers for any given task is 0."
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Old 05-11-08, 05:20 PM   #14
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I'm a man with an analog mind who is living in a digital era.
A digit is a finger, right? And what is this analog of which you speak?
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Old 05-11-08, 06:28 PM   #15
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I understand where you're coming from RG, but stop and think for a minute...

were we better off with cars that had breaker points and condensers, or are we better off with electronically controlled ignitions? Yeah I could replace a set of points and now I can't even FIND the distributor, but shoot you NEVER have to monkey with the ignition system in a modern car - I don't even know where my timing light is...

were we better off pulling TV signals form the airwaves with a set of rabbit ears or are we better off with 100 digitally encrypted channels?

were we better off with mechanically switched telephone systems using rotary dials, or with hand held cordless phones that utilize digital signals?

How about the keyboard you're typing on, connected to this here internet? It's all digital.

Don't rage against progress and technology, you don't have to understand the technology in order to enjoy the ride - it IS an "E" ticket..."the future is fun, the future is fair, you may already have won, you may already be there!"

One last thought:

...there are 10 kinds of people in this world, my friend...those who understand binary and those who don't

PS - you can still enjoy the "simple things", too...even in a digital world there is room for both.
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Old 05-11-08, 06:43 PM   #16
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were we better off with cars that had breaker points and condensers, or are we better off with electronically controlled ignitions? Yeah I could replace a set of points and now I can't even FIND the distributor, but shoot you NEVER have to monkey with the ignition system in a modern car - I don't even know where my timing light is
You should check out my post in the "remember when" thread in which I compared my '68 VW bus to my Honda Element.
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Old 05-11-08, 06:57 PM   #17
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You should check out my post in the "remember when" thread in which I compared my '68 VW bus to my Honda Element.
OK - so why would the same principal be dismissed out of hand for a bike? Isn't a "fly by wire" shifting system a possibility? Wouldn't it be cool if we never had to adjust cables again? I'm not an engineer, so I don't understand the practicalities, and I'm not specifically disagreeing with you either...I'm just thinking out loud
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Old 05-11-08, 08:22 PM   #18
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OK - so why would the same principal be dismissed out of hand for a bike? Isn't a "fly by wire" shifting system a possibility? Wouldn't it be cool if we never had to adjust cables again? I'm not an engineer, so I don't understand the practicalities, and I'm not specifically disagreeing with you either...I'm just thinking out loud
Speaking for myself, I would not want a bike that never needed adjustments. I like doing those things, it's part of the fun. I love friction shifting. I actually enjoy changing a puncture if I'm alone and don't feel like I'm holding anyone up. I know, I know, I'm not normal.
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Old 05-12-08, 07:11 AM   #19
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[QUOTE=zoste;6676115]I understand where you're coming from RG, but stop and think for a minute...

were we better off pulling TV signals form the airwaves with a set of rabbit ears or are we better off with 100 digitally encrypted channels?


The trouble with 100 digitally coded channels is that there's nothing more to watch than when there were 13 analog channels. And that was very little.
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Old 05-12-08, 08:21 AM   #20
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I understand where you're coming from RG, but stop and think for a minute...

were we better off with cars that had breaker points and condensers, or are we better off with electronically controlled ignitions? Yeah I could replace a set of points and now I can't even FIND the distributor, but shoot you NEVER have to monkey with the ignition system in a modern car - I don't even know where my timing light is...

were we better off pulling TV signals form the airwaves with a set of rabbit ears or are we better off with 100 digitally encrypted channels?

were we better off with mechanically switched telephone systems using rotary dials, or with hand held cordless phones that utilize digital signals?

How about the keyboard you're typing on, connected to this here internet? It's all digital.

Don't rage against progress and technology, you don't have to understand the technology in order to enjoy the ride - it IS an "E" ticket..."the future is fun, the future is fair, you may already have won, you may already be there!"

One last thought:

...there are 10 kinds of people in this world, my friend...those who understand binary and those who don't

PS - you can still enjoy the "simple things", too...even in a digital world there is room for both.
I have Campagnolo 10 speed on my bike. But at home I have a Chambers gas stove made in the 1940s, and my dining room light is a combo gas and electric fixture, 100 years old, with carbon filament bulbs. In the kitchen, there's high efficiency compact fluorescent bulbs.
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Old 05-12-08, 08:45 AM   #21
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In many cases, the ideal situation is to have computers doing the work, but with an analog interface.

That being said, I love mechanical devices, particularly the elegance of the bicycle.
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