Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Using a bike computer as a black box

Data forensics: Recreating the details of an accident using a bike computer as a black box.  Cool.  This from the New York Times:

Late last year Ryan Sabga, another top American bike racer, was hit by a car while crossing an intersection in Denver at the beginning of a training ride. The driver, coming out of an alley, was looking over her right shoulder; she stepped on the gas and made a left turn directly into Mr. Sabga as he reached the middle of the street.

The driver told the police she didn’t think she had hit Mr. Sabga. Though her car had a telltale dent, the officer said that without proof of where the cyclist had entered the intersection, he would not be able to write a citation against the driver. That meant Mr. Sabga, who was relatively unscathed, would not be able to get her insurance company to cover the damage to his bike, which was now in pieces.

Back at home, he realized that he might have the proof he needed in the data stored in the Garmin GPS device he used for training.

“Clear as day, you could see where I stopped at the stop sign, where I got hit by the car and where my bike came to rest,” he wrote. “On the corresponding time stamp, you could see the speeds, the stops and even where my heart rate spiked as she hit me.”

The police were unwilling to pursue the case, but they suggested that he send the data to the driver’s insurance company. He did so within a day, and the company took responsibility for the accident.

Filling In the Details Wiped Away by a Bike Crash -

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