Archive for April, 2013

Cycling fans, industry find ways to boost “green”

April 12, 2013 Cheryl Perkins No Comments » Green Innovation

A cross country mountain bike race.

This past weekend I had the opportunity to visit Wheel and Sprocket’s Bike Expo at the Wisconsin Exposition Center in Milwaukee. The annual expo, billed as the world’s largest bike exhibit, has been held for many years and is truly a celebration of cycling in our community.

The enthusiasm of the biking community was tangible. You could just look around the Exposition Center and see a range of bike owners and riders from hardcore racers to those that just ride bikes for fun on the weekend.

Showcased were thousands of bikes, bicycle accessories and related clothing items on display and for sale during this four-day event. There were also onsite custom bike builds, demos, seminars and industry representatives available to answer all questions.

The seminar topics ranged from the history of transportation, through training and fitness, all the way to an introduction to recumbent tricycles. Anyone could find the information and products they needed regardless of their level of engagement in biking.

I also saw Gary Fisher, innovator and mountain bike pioneer, tell his story. Fisher started competing in road and track races at the age 12 and went on to win many national titles. He introduced the first mountain bike with a front-end suspension fork and a suspension-ready geometry.

Attendees were also able to learn about how to maintain their bikes as well from companies such as the WD-40 Co. WD-40 has just launched a new line of bike-specific products for cleaning, lubricating and protecting your bike, and came to the show to demonstrate that their new products are easy to use, provide good value for the money, and get the job done right.

It seems like a natural extension for a trusted brand like WD-40 to develop products to clean, lubricate and protect your bike. One of their new products that was selling especially fast was their WD-40 BIKE Dry Lube product. Special polymers in this product form a dry film to protect bike chains and repel dirt in arid or dusty conditions resulting in a clean, quiet drive train.

Another product they have developed that was especially appealing to me was the WD-40 BIKE Foaming Bike Wash for removing stubborn grime. This product is even biodegradable and safe for all parts of any bike, including carbon fiber, titanium, aluminum, steel, chrome, rubber or plastic.

Bikes are all about innovation, ingenuity, and friendliness toward the environment. Riding a bike is a great way to reduce your carbon footprint and get some great exercise doing it.

I know it is probably hard to think about riding a bike with the recent ice storm we just had, but spring should be here soon. With the warmer weather we will hopefully be on the trails soon.

App based on smart algorithms stocks your fridge

April 4, 2013 Cheryl Perkins No Comments » Cool Inventions and gadgets

Rosie appA new app has Italian shoppers using the cloud to help keep their refrigerators and pantries stocked. The app is called Rosie, and it learns users’ purchase routines to deliver items when they run out.

After entering details about their household, such as number of residents, their age and regular buying habits, shoppers can then head to their grocer’s online store to start shopping. Then they simply head to the real store of their choice and pick up their items, already bagged and waiting for them.

But Rosie doesn’t stop there. The service automatically finds the cheapest price for the item and reserves it in a nearby store. The app even alerts consumers when they might be getting low or running out of an item based on smart algorithms and their purchase histories.

Billboard turns humidity into drinking water

April 2, 2013 Cheryl Perkins No Comments » Cool videos

In many places around the world, fresh and safe drinking water is hard to come by. But some engineering students in Peru have teamed up with an advertising agency to create a billboard that turns the nation’s humid climate into water that is so desperately needed.

The University of Engineering and Technology (UTEC) teamed up with Mayo Publicity to capture moisture from the air and convert it into filtered drinking water. Check out this video showing how it’s done:

Lima receives almost no rainfall, but humidity is around 98 percent. This single billboard is capable of capturing 9,450 liters every three months to quench the thirst of hundreds of families. Imagine what would happen if hundreds of these billboards were put up around that nation? And what would happen if this idea catches on around the world?