Jetpacks: the Internet of Things Spindle bike
We work in the world’s greatest cycling city. So, we’ve built a nifty piece of hardware to turn our bikes into full-blown Internet of Things objects and explore the future of urban cycling from a data-driven and technology focussed perspective.
How it all began
When Devhouse Spindle was launched, we were promised jetpacks as a means of transport to get to work. In Groningen, where the Spindle HQ is located, the best way to travel is by bike.
Take a normal bike…
Our designer Mark was sent on a quest to find perfect bikes for the team. He found these cool VanMoofs, all black with a matte finish and put our logo on it. When you’re working with a lot of tech-savvy, gadget-crazy people, it doesn’t take long before wild plans are being made. Within a few hours a new side-project was born, called the Jetpacks.
…and make it sexy
As our core business at Spindle is building smart business communication software, it was a quite logical step to make our bikes talk to us, each other, the road, and the internet. The goal: to build a nifty piece of hardware that turns our bikes into full-blown Internet of Things objects.
However, building hardware isn’t something we do every day. That’s when Herman Kopinga came into the story, a lifehacking coach and ‘maker of things that make you happy’. He made the first prototype on our way to an internet-connected platform.
Everything about the Jetpacks is open source
One thing you might know by now about the nerds at Spindle is that they love to spend their spare time working on open source side-projects. But besides only fun, we think that the Jetpacks can give a lot of information about the cycling infrastructure of Groningen.
By creating a data-layer over the infrastructure, we can gather more knowledge about how cyclists move through the city. This way, the future of urban cycling can be viewed from a data-driven and technology focussed perspective.
The Jetpack will be giving information about his location, how fast the bicycle going, where it’s going, the quality of the road, etcetera. Everything we do is open source, so everyone can benefit from the collected data. We just want to build the tool that can make all those things possible.