Today is one of those days when ADHD gets the best of me, thanks in part to Marie-Christine who sends word of the built-in turn signal bike jacket. I can tell you right now that as great as this product is (largely still in the DIY/concept stage), it’s not going to go anywhere without a cool-factor name to market it. As one could surmise, this conceptual rendition was invented by an engineering wonk (Leah Buechley) who stubbornly persists in naming things descriptively by function and utility (not that we know anyone else who does this). It’s a good thing she’s got a solid gig at MIT because she wouldn’t last five minutes on Madison Avenue.
If so inclined, you can make one of these yourself, courtesy of a tutorial posted to Instructables. It would be helpful to have the kit which Ms Buechley sells on her site. She also provides a series of basic electronics tutorials that are useful to build things. Her site includes an extensive list of DIY projects related to sewing+electronics/math. I think the math bags are a great way to combine math with art and craft. She uses a graphing calculator and a laser cutter to make those. I had no idea there was such a thing as a desktop laser cutter. Hers is not much bigger than a desktop laser printer.
A note about the photo showing placement of LEDs on the jacket. You might think it would be better to have the LEDs across each shoulder blade for greater visibility but on a bike, you’re hunched over. Drivers behind you can’t see your shoulders unless you’re sitting upright. LEDS just above the back waist is a good place.
Okay, you can run along now. I know some of you will be lost for the rest of the day following those links.
Image courtesy: L.Buechley