Good inventions for cycles?

I thought of several really good inventions at the weekend, actually they’re not an inventions because they probably already exist but I wont let that stop me!

I’ve just bought a new bike and two things struck me when I bought it..

(1) Why isn’t it automatically stamped to show it’s mine in some way, perhaps postcode or passport number? – I know this can be done but why don’t all bike manufacturers agree that there is a place visible on the chassis of all bikes (like a number plate on cars) where all bikes are stamped with owner info. If a thief tries to tamper or spray over that (or stick something on top) then it will be obvious that it’s knicked. If all bike shops agreed then even second hand bikes could be re-registered through a special scheme so that all bikes are legal.

(2) Why don’t all bikes now come with a light set as standard? – they come with a bell as standard now (in the UK) and I think lights are much more important because you can shout to alert people you’re there if you don’t have a bell but you can’t light up your path at night! – Whilst were at it I’d like to take it to another level and see all bikes come with a (dynamo?) light set with the rear light linked to the brakes (as with cars) so that people behind know when you’re braking. I suspect that a lot of cycling accidents are caused by cyclists braking and people behind not being aware of it (I know you’re supposed to do a wavy hand signal but who does that, especially in the middle of a congested city where you’re likely to lose any body part that strays near a car). Similarly why don’t bikes have indicators?

I’m just mulling this over because it’s early on a Monday and my brain hasn’t got into work mode yet. I suspect there are very good reasons why none of this has been done (economics or administration or inability to police) but at this point in the morning they seem like good ideas.

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About willwoods
I'm Head of Learning and Teaching Technologies in the Institute of Educational Technology at the Open University.

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