association-list a veritable mint for dunning-kruggerands

The Wanting

I want this. And a gumstix computer with one of these, instead of the XScale and an SD reader instead of the clunky MMC. And a flexible touchscreen. I would then combine all of these things with my friend Ian’s Roadster software and a handlebar bag (can’t forget a big battery of some sort and a big antenna for listening to GPS/talking to networks) in order to make the best bike touring computer eV4r. Unfortunately, all of that stuff would cost me about five grand. Dear lazy(rich)web! Provide, provide!

The other project (also bike-related) that I would like to undertake is a touring recharger system. You put one of these on your front wheel, then wire it to a setup (WARNING: violent hand-waving ahead!) in your rear pannier which has a big capacitor and some regulator hardware (look at those hands go, folks!) which trickle charges all of your batteries (AAAs for lights, a spare battery for the computer mentioned above, perhaps a battery or two for a small laptop, batteries for an LED camping lantern, cell phone batteries, etc.). Once done (and suitably waterproofed) you have most of life’s modern electronic conveniences whilst on the road. In theory. The dynohub only provides a couple of watts, but one imagines that a couple of hours a day would be enough to keep a fair amount of gear charged up. The really unfortunate thing about the front hub systems is that you can’t use the bike as a generator unless it’s moving, so there’s no putting the bike up at night and pedaling free for an hour to get some more juice. You have what you have at the end of the day.

Of the two projects, the first is far more likely to bear fruit despite its staggering cost (and occasionally fictional equipment), as I have the pertinent skills to put a bunch of premade parts together and program them up into something useful, whereas the second wants many skills and much knowledge that I do not have, and am ultimately too ADD to acquire. Still, they’re both neat ideas. Now I just need to suddenly become rich and totally idle so that I can pursue them.

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