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The Conference Bike 198

gomaze writes "If you are like me, you don't look forward to conference meetings. Until now. We are going to be getting a Conference Bike. They even have a movie on how you can find love with the bike, very interesting. Great way for everyone to get out of the office and still get work done."
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The Conference Bike

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  • Run away! (Score:5, Interesting)

    by lothar97 ( 768215 ) * <owen@@@smigelski...org> on Friday October 15, 2004 @06:01PM (#10540919) Homepage Journal
    I've seen them on the sidewalks/boardwalks here in San Diego. They're huge, and take up plenty of space. I can't imagine they're allowed to go on the streets. Odd how the video doesn't show anyone wearing a helmet, when even Segway clips show people in helmets. I also feel bad for the person at the front (facing back)- they can't see where they're going.
    • Why a helmet? The top speed of this thing is probably not much above jogging speed, and its width makes it very stable. And people aren't regularly chastised for running without a helmet.
      • well there is lots of manpower there, so i would expect top speed to be slightly less than a bike, but maybe more, depending on how much it ways.

        Plus, helmets are the law in the uS.

        Just looks like a nerds orgy.
        • "Plus, helmets are the law in the uS."

          Uh... I've never heard that. And have never seen a helmetless bicyclist ticketed. In my state you can ride a MOTORCYCLE without a helmet, so bicycle helmet laws would seem a bit silly.

          Anyway, this story is old news. I saw it a day or two ago. I think it was on Fark?
        • Plus, helmets are the law in the uS.

          No, they're not. Some states and cities have helmet laws, but by far not all, nor even most. And of those that do, mostly it's for under 18's or under 16's.

    • If I ever see one, I'll make sure to walk in it's exact path and go very slowly. If they hit me I'll sue. If they don't hit me, they'll be really annoyed.

      I can't imagine that you would be able to take it anywhere without being a menace.
      • Re:Run away! (Score:2, Insightful)

        by zorglubxx ( 513559 )
        woa, let me guess, you are american uh ? Only an american could so twisted to read a story about a bike and think of different ways to sue somebody else, geesh...

        This bike is cool (though expensive). There is one parked by the canal here in Amsterdam. Fun to see people ridding it. Although I have seen one that is way cooler - it's elongated instead of being round, and on one side there is a beer tap and a bartender that pours beers for those pedaling! I cant think of how many ways this would wrong in the U
    • The potential liability issues don't bear thinking about if the one doing the steering gets the rest into trouble .....
    • by Scud ( 1607 ) on Friday October 15, 2004 @06:17PM (#10541073)
      Yeah, I'm thinking the SUV's of bicycles.

      I'm waiting for seven fat fuckers going down one of those badass hills in SF to find out that the brakes simply can't cope.

    • Re:Run away! (Score:3, Informative)

      by Valiss ( 463641 )
      I can't imagine they're allowed to go on the streets.

      California law prohibits the use of bicycles on sidewalks. They are to follow the same rules are cars. Why should this be any different?

      You can learn more here:
      http://www.bikelink.com/law_safety.htm
      • i saw a transvestite wonder-woman piloting one of these in times square during the august critical mass [critical-mass.org] ride. she seemed to be doing most of the pedaling with bunch of tourists half heartedly participating. there wasn't any conferencing going on, i think they were more into the spectacal. and maybe looking for a way to join critical mass. it looked like it was hard to steer. the pedi-cabs fared much better -- those are also trikes but with two passengers up front and one cyclist pedaling in the rear.
    • Odd how the video doesn't show anyone wearing a helmet

      May I know how a helmet may help? Do you expect falling off the bike? Or do you expect his bike to fall over or something? You should remember that in Holland the terrain is rather flat.

      I really don't get all these negative responses here, but maybe I'm missing something obvious.
      • May I know how a helmet may help? Do you expect falling off the bike? Or do you expect his bike to fall over or something? You should remember that in Holland the terrain is rather flat.

        That's a fucked statement.

        I often ride a bike on flat terrain. I fall off my bike once in a great while - but it does happen in order to avoid a poorly-driven car or a crazed pedestrian or a piece of trash on the road. Or that low-hanging branch (haha). Even at low speed.

        A helmet is useless until you need it. I've fa
        • Since reaching adulthood, I've fallen off my bike one time, and of course I wasn't wearing a helmet.

          I was riding on a paved road just over a mile from home and noticed that my front tire was just steering into a crack in the pavement just wide enough to accept my front tire.

          The front of my bike came to an immediate halt, but due to those damned laws of inertia, me and the back of the bike kept going. The bike frame bent just behind the handle bars to about a 15 degree angle, and I went over the handle ba
    • I also feel bad for the person at the front (facing back)- they can't see where they're going.

      I guess that means that seat is for management...

      --Dan
  • Cool but expensive!! (Score:3, Informative)

    by erick99 ( 743982 ) <homerun@gmail.com> on Friday October 15, 2004 @06:02PM (#10540923)
    Looks like a lot of fun but the current price of 9,500 euro's which is currently $11,852 is a bit rich for me. There is also tax, duty, and shipping to be paid as well.
  • DOT COM? (Score:5, Funny)

    by wickedhobo ( 461297 ) on Friday October 15, 2004 @06:02PM (#10540927)
    You work at one of those .COM's don't you. I suspect well see that bike on e-Bay soon enough.

    heh.
  • Not likely. (Score:5, Funny)

    by irokitt ( 663593 ) <archimandrites-i ... om minus painter> on Friday October 15, 2004 @06:02PM (#10540929)
    "a movie on how you can find love with the bike"

    Even Slashdotters aren't that desperate.
  • by Inthewire ( 521207 ) on Friday October 15, 2004 @06:03PM (#10540936)
    This thing needs a kegholder.

  • this is excellent!

    fred flinstone would be VERY proud!
  • No thanks (Score:5, Funny)

    by Anonymous Coward on Friday October 15, 2004 @06:03PM (#10540944)
    Great, now your shortsighted supervisor can not only run the company into the ground, but he can also crash the bike (which he will inevetably be steering) while you furiously peddle away.

    Great. Just great.
    • while you furiously peddle away
      Being programmers/tech staff rather than sales reps, I don't think most slashdotters will be peddling anything.
  • Uh.. (Score:5, Funny)

    by Ikn ( 712788 ) <rsmith29&alumni,nd,edu> on Friday October 15, 2004 @06:03PM (#10540945) Homepage
    Mod me Flamebait all you want, but that's about the dumbest thing I've ever seen.
    • Re:Uh.. (Score:1, Troll)

      by brilinux ( 255400 )
      Well, we can mod you flamebate (unless we have just posted in this discussion), but we would do that because you gave no reason why this is stupid.

      Perhaps it is stupid because people in business suits do not want to have to pedal around during meetings, or because its high cost seems that the money would be better sent on nice furnishings for a conference room (or new technology for one that already has furniture), or just because it would be too distracting to have conferences while on a bike.

      But it cert
      • It's cost is especially high considering the poor quality of the materials and the overkill design. Something that pricey should be built out of better tubing, have better parts, and without a doubt have better wheels.
    • Re:Uh.. (Score:2, Funny)

      by kfg ( 145172 )
      As one of the /. bicycle advocates and experimenter with human powered vehicles I'd love to comply with your mod wish, however, I find the issue complicated by being in complete agreement with you.

      Come one! Come all! It's a Doof Fest on wheels!

      You'll have to try harder next time.

      KFG
    • With a slashdot id over 700,000, it's not too surprising you haven't seen anything dumber.

      Stick around.

  • There is a sudden rise in work-related injuries.
  • Wow (Score:4, Insightful)

    by cloudkj ( 685320 ) on Friday October 15, 2004 @06:05PM (#10540959)
    What a great excuse to call a meeting and ditch work for the rest of the day, then hit up a bar and get drunk with your co-workers and end up wrecking the conference bike by ramming it into a parked car.
    • Remember when recreation meant escape from the physical or mental pressures of work? So that one could re-create oneself?

      Now, thanks to modern technology and ingenuity, you can't even recreate without bringing your work with you, at least if you buy this overpriced contraption.

      Don't you dare mod this as funny, since recreation is as essential to life as food and air, only the effects of a lack of recreation are more difficult to discern and take longer to manifest.

      This really pisses me off...I'm gonna go
  • Ugh... (Score:2, Insightful)

    by mOoZik ( 698544 )
    Is this the pinnacle of a stupid product?

    • by TimmyDee ( 713324 )
      Ummm. . . That's all I've got. Look at the thing. The answer is just "no".
    • Corporate Japan would love this. People take
      company vacations there, sing company songs,
      and so on. I can just imagine a bunch of
      Japanese people, dressed in suits, pedaling
      along on one of these.
      • Corporate Japan would love this. People take company vacations there, sing company songs, and so on.

        It's also almost mandatory to drink really heavily at company events. That's safe enough if you're sitting around a table or taking the train home, but ... hmmm, could be amusing...

        [OTOH, I'll bet a fixed arcade version of this would be a huge hit!]
  • Great (Score:5, Funny)

    by Space_Soldier ( 628825 ) <not4_u@hotmail.com> on Friday October 15, 2004 @06:05PM (#10540964)
    I can't wait to see the first accident with that bike. CNN is reporting that "the Microsoft Board of Directors have been ran over by a semi during a meeting on how to destroy Linux. Police are searching for the hit and run driver. According to witnesses, the culprit was a penguin.
    • Re:Great (Score:2, Funny)

      by BabyJaysus ( 808429 )
      Congratulations on being the first to relate the story to Microsoft and Linux!
    • the culprit was in a penguin suit ands reportedly shouting " AND I PRONOUNCE lee-nucks as lee-nucks" with a strange finnish accent.

      local police have no leads at this time.
  • by mfh ( 56 )
    If this was Fark [fark.com], the submission would have a Florida tag. I can't think of a more useless item than a 7 seater bike that goes nowhere -- except perhaps to serve as a reminder of how most corporate meetings function. One guy steers and everyone pedals like mad to get where they are going. My only question (and it's not apparent from the Slashad): Does this contraption have breaks, and if so, do they work properly?
    • by mfh ( 56 )
      breaks

      uh... I meant brakes. Duh.
      • It has brakes. It also weighs 400lbs!! The brakes probably come in handy at times. Can you imagine heading downhill in this thing without brakes :-)
    • Does this contraption have breaks, and if so, do they work properly?

      This is a bike for the management. Do you care ;)
  • Am I the only one who noticed the utter lack of brakes on this thing?! Imagine when not just one person, not just two on a duo-bike, but 7 people crash at once! This should be the Carnage Bike, not Conference Bike !
  • by thewiz ( 24994 ) * on Friday October 15, 2004 @06:08PM (#10540981)
    that they made a CONFERENCE bike instead of a COMMITTEE bike. The committee bike would never have gone anywhere, except, maybe in a circle or spun in place.
    • "A committee is an animal with four hind legs"
    • by RobertB-DC ( 622190 ) * on Friday October 15, 2004 @06:22PM (#10541119) Homepage Journal
      that they made a CONFERENCE bike instead of a COMMITTEE bike. The committee bike would never have gone anywhere, except, maybe in a circle or spun in place.

      I think they're coming out with the "Committee Bike" next. Where the "Conference Bike" has six sets of pedals and one steering wheel, the "Committee Bike" will have six steering wheels. It will still have six sets of pedals, but three will be geared forward and three will be geared in reverse. The seventh seat (or, the "Figurehead" seat) will have a steering wheel *and* pedals, but they will not be connected to anything.
  • Those things have been going down 6th Avenue here in new york for the past year. There are regular rentals from Central park but only tourists use them. They are bright red and quite funny to look at. I don't think most new yorkers would be caught dead riding on one of those things... More than likely one of these tourist groups is going to get run over one day since they ride straight through traffic...
    • Haven't you also had performance artists riding them at night clad in suits of white Christmas lights and big spherical helmets also adorned with the lights?

      I know I've seen pictures but I can't seem to GIS any on-line.
  • Holy shit! (Score:4, Funny)

    by Ogrez ( 546269 ) on Friday October 15, 2004 @06:09PM (#10540998)
    *clicks link*

    Holy shit.. its the monkees on a weird bike.

  • Are they purposely trying to look like the Wiggles?

    Yes, I have kids.

  • So, you must work in some alternate reality where the .com bubble never burst, and companies are still trying to lure tech workers (who have more job opportunities than they can fill) by being fun and kooky and buying expensive toys.

    I wish I had thought of that.
  • by Anonymous Coward
    Great, now we'll have all the "put the pedal to the metal" analogies in conferences.

    Isn't it just like the corprate world to make you feel like a hamster by pedaling and not being able to go anywhere?

    Corporate life -- no matter how hard you pedal, there will be a freeloading jackass getting somewhere due to YOUR efforts.

    Does it have any room for TPS reports?

    First guy to pull out a powerpoint presentation gets thrown off and left behind.

    A meeting without coffee, donuts, nor other swag, nothing to motiv
  • by rasafras ( 637995 ) <{ude.uhj.ahp} {ta} {samat}> on Friday October 15, 2004 @06:10PM (#10541014) Homepage
    The real way meetings work would be reflected in a bike as follows:

    The wheels are arranged in a circle around the rim; all the bike can do is spin. The harder you pedal, the faster you spin, but you still end up going nowhere.
    • I think you were joking but got modded insightful. Perhaps its just that you have poor communication skills when in meetings, but almost all of the meetings I go to have been extremely productive and successful.

      Why? Because we focus on what needs to be done, keep chatter to a minimum, and constantly think about what the next step is that needs to be taken, and then take it. Meetings don't have to be pointless time wasters if you have people who actually know how to HAVE meetings.

    • Also, each person gets their own horn to toot.
  • When will cities be redesigned to accomodate this land vessel?
  • "If you are like me, you don't look forward to conference meetings. Until now. We are going to be getting a Conference Bike. They even have a movie on how you can find love with the bike, very interesting. Great way for everyone to get out of the office and still get work done."

    Honestly, who couldn't tell that this was some sort of lame attempt at free publicity for ConferenceBike.com or a source of referrals for this gomaze individual. He'll probably get credit for every purchase that came from a HTTP

  • by FyRE666 ( 263011 ) * on Friday October 15, 2004 @06:12PM (#10541030) Homepage
    If this contraption is supposed to convey the "meeting experience", shouldn't all the riders have their own steering wheel attached to their wheel, so it would end up spinning around in aimless circles with no obvious goal? At least that would bring it closer to how our meetings seem to end up...
  • Great way for everyone to get out of the office and still get work done.

    Get out of the office I can believe. Still get work done? I doubt it. Unless ``work'' is just having a good time together, it just isn't going to happen. Too many distractions, like the cars honking and zipping by, the smell from that cow orker who wouldn't have needed deodorant if you weren't all sweating in the hot sun, and on and on.

    This sounds like a silly, expensive gimmick, so I'm not surprised to hear a business is buying

  • Hurg! (Score:5, Funny)

    by GrAfFiT ( 802657 ) on Friday October 15, 2004 @06:13PM (#10541038) Homepage
    "There are now 40 conferencebikes in the world"
    Well, even Segway does better. Using a Segway made you look like an alien on wheels. Using this make you look a pack of dangerous fools.
    "this thing will change your life"... already heard that before.

    Besides this, do they care of people using PDAs or lynx ?
    • Besides this, do they care of people using PDAs or lynx?

      The one lady had a dog, so I don't see any reason your pet lynx couldn't go for a ride as well.
  • I make sure everyone is dressed in a bright, ruffled shirt and no one is allowed into the conference if their shirt is the same colour as someone else.

    They're also not allowed in if they're not wearing perfume and willing to pose for a picture that looks like the makings of a mechanical orgy.

    Oh wait. Did I say conference?

  • What a great idea! (Score:3, Insightful)

    by anon*127.0.0.1 ( 637224 ) <slashdot@baudkaE ... m minus math_god> on Friday October 15, 2004 @06:14PM (#10541046) Journal
    Assuming that you have access to a place with lots of wide, smooth paths with no hills and gentle turns. And no pedestrians.

    Better get someone out front to direct traffic, too. The person who is doing the steering has the whole bike and three people sitting right in front of them, I don't imagine they have much of a view.

    • My kids thought it would be loads of fun. It should be able to handle gentle hills. The smaller kids would go in front - but I wouldn't want any cars around. Problem is, most places that don't allow cars, don't allow bikes either.

      So assuming I could find a place to store it, and some places we could actually go with it, I'd pay around $300 for the contraption. Doesn't look like it'll happen soon.

  • Ummm (Score:3, Insightful)

    by MrRuslan ( 767128 ) on Friday October 15, 2004 @06:18PM (#10541078)
    Those people are not wearing suits...they are wearing something u see clowns ware in the circus. all they need is some makeup and a big red nose..
  • I'm sure it will be a real ice breaker at the next company meeting when the two people riding backwards puke on their coworkers!
  • It's a ConferenceTrike, duh. *sigh*
  • I'm suprised nobody's asked where the documents, laptops, conference phone or network connection is?

    Those are the things you use in conferences, not a lame bike.
  • by moorcito ( 529567 ) on Friday October 15, 2004 @06:21PM (#10541107) Homepage
    From the link: ...lights up smiling...It lowers inhibitions...it's a party on wheels...

    Buy a 12 pack and drive around. Same effect.
    • >> ...lights up smiling...It lowers inhibitions...it's a party on wheels..
      >Buy a 12 pack and drive around. Same effect

      Eh, for me that wouldn't do it. I'd need to at least drink the beer.

  • But I decided against posting it here because it was so stupid. I guess others have no such compunctions...
  • This is great... when executives meet to figure out ways to drive the company over a cliff, they can also do it literally.

  • ...how about you give the 10,000 pounds it costs to a worthy charity and go for a walk with your workmates at lunch time, bonding over how you helped xyz needy cause.
  • The conference bike that would fit our team well would need 7 steering wheels and only one pedle because there are more people trying to direct us and much less than that doing the work. It should have 3 gears (-1, -2 and -3) and, well, let us be honest, breaks would never be used so they can be omitted.
  • Did that video seem to anybody else like the opening theme of a really cheesy business themed reality/sitcom tv show?

  • by veg_all ( 22581 )
    Finally, an excuse to buy a hummer.
  • There was a segment on one of the day-time shows a couple months ago. But it was a "Party" bike. Looks like a company in the US has been "pedaling' them for a while (sorry I could not resist). Though they aren't selling them per-se, rather using them as tourist gimic (which several New York readers have already pointed out.)

    -MS2K
  • Here's [nyud.net] a mirror.
  • On my first ever visit to Amsterdam, I was sat with a group of friends smoking a particularly potent joint out of the front of one of many coffee shops in the city. I'd had a few and was feeling in good spirits, and was starting to get the occasional weird sensation.. and then I looked up to see one of those things trundle past loaded with people.. quite a strange feeling, followed by loud laughter when I found out I wasn't seeing things :)

Statistics are no substitute for judgement. -- Henry Clay

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