Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Bicycling Magazine - The Big Question!

The Big Question

Bicycling Magazine has a feature called "The Big Question". Every month they post the answers to the question of the month that readers have responded to via their web site Bicycling.com - The Big Question).

I have been posting answers to these questions for the better part of the summer. Yesterday, the latest issue (November 2007) arrived in the mail. I quickly jumped to the Spin section where the Big Question is published has was happily surprised to see that one of my answers had made it :-)

Marty's Answer to the Big Question.
I finally made it into Bicycling Magazine :-)

Really, I've Done This...

People might think I am joking about blogging from the paceline. But I have really done it. It was easier to do after I fashioned a handlebar mount for my phone from a plastic belt clip and some double sided Velcro straps.

The 2006 High Point to Cape May, NJ Ride

The first time was in 2006. I was going on a long ride with 3 other riders on a top-to-bottom tour of NJ that went from High Point to Cape May over the course of 3 days. It was the culmination of a few years work by my friend, Mike, who have a major part in mapping out this bike route for the NJ Department of Transportation.

In 2006 I was still experimenting with blogging and I wanted to find a way to keep people updated on our progress. I had put together a blog on my web site using blogging software provided by my hosting provider. I also mashed in a number of other web apps like Flickr and Google Maps.

Anyway, there is the main blog section, which the 4 of us contributed to as we prepared for the ride. Then there is the "mo-blog" section which is actually a feed off of Blogger.com and Flickr where I was able to post pictures (and commentary) of our ride taken with my cell phone camera, as we were riding. It was cool.

Although there were only 4 of us, we had a good number of people interested in our experiences along this route. Mike's co-workers were very excited about this ride and were happy to be able to follow along online (as were our families). We even had a publicity photo shoot for his company, The RBA Group.

The site looks a bit clunky now and there are some bugs in it, but I still want to preserve that blog as originally created, warts and all. It still gets hits when people search for "High Point to Cape May bike route".

This Blog...

Now there really isn't a need to post to my blog from my bike as I ride my more routine rides. Typically there isn't a built in audience waiting for the next picture upload while I am riding like there was for the NJ ride. So now I just take a picture and upload it at a later time when I am updating my blog. 99% of the photos you see on this blog have been taken with my cell phone camera.

The Future ...PMC? ...Video?

If I do the PMC in 2008, I will most definitely repeat the on-bike blogging experience as I take on that ride. Now if I could figure out a way to do the same with video...


Anonymous said...

As one of the riders with Marty when he did his experimental bike blog update via camera phone, I must say it was fantastic. My wife and several friends were watching the blog to see our progress and it helped to appreciate the experience, as well as know when it was safe to call my cell.