When I was in primary school a friend had a Honda XR75 that he would occasionally let me ride on the dirt trails near his house. He didn’t trust me to change gears so I recollect riding it only in second gear. As a teenager, family friends who lived on the site of the business they managed allowed me to ride their motorcycle around the generous hardstand of the business premises. Pretty quickly I learned how to change gears although space was limited so third gear was all I could manage.
University, career and marriage became my priority from my late teens and sadly motorcycles were absent from my life although I didn’t give them much thought over those years.
In 2006, due to the motorcycle licencing laws at the time, I was able to undertake 2 days of rider training (held midweek in a shopping centre carpark) and if the instructor thought I was good enough after a road ride an open motorcycle licence was mine. Now what motorcycle to get? Safety was my major concern and with limited research I figured a BMW would be safer than most. So I went to the nearby BMW dealer and purchased a brand new BMW F800ST.
It was a good bike and sneaky fast, however I managed to stay safe and only dropped it twice doing two very low speed turns. As you can see I also got all the BMW kit including Rallye Suit, Airflow Gloves, Allround Boots, BMW System 5 Helmet and probably also a couple of pairs of BMW socks. Reluctantly, a pending move to London in late 2007 saw me put the F800ST up for sale. There was little interest until a friend of a friend showed some. As a novice motorcycle seller, I consented to a test ride. Unfortunately this ended in a serious accident for the test rider (no other parties were involved) and the F800ST was a write off.
In the weeks leading up to my arrival in London I was researching touring bikes as I could think of no better way to experience all the Europe had to offer. I settled on a BMW R1200RT and was the proud owner of a brand new 2008 model early in the new year.
Technology is part of our everyday lives, used extensively in our work and increasingly in our homes. For many it is at the hub of our social lives thanks to social networking sites like Facebook, Instagram and Twitter. So many of us now have smartphones, tablets, netbooks, e-Readers, laptops or at least access to a PC. As the cost of hardware falls and our need for instant access to information increases, free or low cost software (websites or smartphone apps) provide tailor made solutions to help us manage our increasingly busy lives.
But all this technology can be confusing. Some user interfaces are less than intuitive, and few of us could be bothered to read the detailed on-line user guides. And there is so much information on internet, it is hard to know what to believe, to really know what technology will make life simpler, save time and effort or enhance our leisure activities or hobbies.
But once you get a feel for it, know what to look out for and how to find it, the latest technology, gadgets and software/apps can be addictive. And these days they are accessible to all budgets. Today, many of the expensive tech/gadgets of a few years ago are available on the latest generation of smartphones thanks to a few low cost apps.
Is it necessary? Not really, we used to get by without it. But is certainly is fun and we all like having a new toy to play with and show to our friends. It’s a bit like having a mobile or cell phone. They never used to be essential but now they go everywhere with us and we’d feel lost without one.
So if you are into motorcycles, whether for work or play, and you want to know what technology and gadgets are available to enhance your motorcycling experience, then ridewithtech.com is for you.
Our aim is to introduce technology and gadgets with application to motorcyclists of all ages and all riding styles; whether you ride the latest sportsbike or vintage scooter, or planning a round the world adventure or simply use your motorcycle to commute to work. Our contributors are avid motorcyclists who want to share their experiences with others in the worldwide motorcycling community.
The emphasis of ridewithtech.com is on travel, technology and gadgets rather than mechanics or motorcycles. We aim not to get too technical and will try and avoid acronyms and jargon typical of some tech based sites. There is plenty of technical information on the internet if this is your thing and we will probably reference these sites from time to time.
ridewithtech.com‘s aim is to be relevant to motorcyclists of all levels of tech ability, acceptance or phobia, from the early adopters to those considering their first smartphone.
When providing information on the latest technology and gadgets our aim is to address the following:
– What is it?
– How does it work?
– What is the practical application to motorcyclists?
– Is it any good?
We welcome feedback and suggestions from the global motorcycling community and are always on the look out for contributors to ensure our content is current and relevant (contact us). Please follow the links for details of our Contributors and Friends.
We look forward to hearing from you. Ride safe.