Let the beatings begin!

Discussion in 'Power Training' started by peterpen, Sep 30, 2006.

  1. peterpen

    peterpen New Member

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    http://www.microsporttech.com/index.php

    A 'power meter' that has a sensor in the footbed of your shoe.

    It would be so cool if this were accurate, but for various reasons it probably won't be...

    Better than the iBike, not as good as a Polar? only time will tell... :rolleyes:
     
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  2. frenchyge

    frenchyge New Member

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    LOL @ the subject line. :D

    At least they figured out that the computer should be brightly colored to indicate its "power-ness". That's a good start. ;)
     
  3. MikeMuk

    MikeMuk New Member

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    I think at one point or another, any engineer (or technically minded person) who has an interest has thought of measuring power at the pedal (rather than crank/chain/hub). I personally use custom insoles, for some fallen arches, so if I understand the site correctly - I'd have to get rid of these to use their system.Surely the wiser thing to do would be to use a small block that fitted between the sole of the sole and the cleat - make it for LOOk 3 bolt fittings and youi'll have pretty much compete flexibility for qhich crank, shoe, wheel and pedal system you wish to use.
     
  4. SolarEnergy

    SolarEnergy New Member

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    well this brings power meter technology closer to the mass which is good. I don't really care if it's 5% or 10% accurate, as long as it's consistant and repeatable.
     
  5. RapDaddyo

    RapDaddyo Active Member

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    I sure hope they launch this new power measurement system better than iBike has. I am still shaking my head trying to understand why iBike has not done a comrehensive comparative study of iBike versus SRM, PT, Ergomo and Polar. They could have hired Kraig Willett to strap all of the PMs on his bike and do actual test rides as he did when he compared SRM, PT, et al. I suppose there will be several introductions of new power measurement technology over the next several years (e.g., one new technology per year). Personally, I don't plan to waste my time looking at them unless and until the manufacturer releases a high quality comparative study. I don't think the burden should be on the cycling community to figure out if something is as accurate as existing systems.
     
  6. peterpen

    peterpen New Member

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    Full credit goes to 2 Live Crew. damn, that was a long time ago...

    Anyway, I agree that the best place for such a system would be between cleat and sole, but I think they're just using existing technology.

    There are the obvious problems of power from pulling up (not an advisable pedaling technique, but some do it,) lateral forces, seated vs. standing, and weeding out noise like the pressure applied when standing on the pedals at 3 & 9:00 - but just coasting.

    But it would be slick if they can get it dialed.
     
  7. Thorman

    Thorman New Member

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    It is strange that they haven't done any formal comparitive analysis yet. How hard can it be? Find a handful of riders put the stuff on their bikes and get it done! I think such a study could be completed in a matter of weeks.
     
  8. frenchyge

    frenchyge New Member

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    Word some time ago was that they had hired a lab to do an impartial 3rd-party comparison vs SRM and PT, and were awaiting the results. Then the 'software bug' issues began to crop up, release was delayed, and there was less discussion about the comparison studies. I somehow got dropped from the Wattage Topica forum and have never re-subscribed, but they used to discuss iBike quite frequently until the makers finally said "just wait for the study results." I assume they're still waiting.
     
  9. RapDaddyo

    RapDaddyo Active Member

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    iBike was planning to use the Cooper Institute in Dallas for the comparative analysis. The choice of Cooper reflects their naivete in power systems. A wiser choice would have been BikeTechReview (Willett's company). They do very well designed studies (e.g., the best wind tunnel studies of wheels I think). They are no longer touting an upcoming study by Cooper Institute or anyone else. I heard that and couldn't believe my ears. They're saying, "It's as accurate as SRM, PT, et. But, of course, we don't have any actual data to back up that claim."
     
  10. amartinez

    amartinez New Member

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    The situation with the Ergomo accuracy claims seems similar to me, isn't it ?
     
  11. RapDaddyo

    RapDaddyo Active Member

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    It is to me. I think someone who introduces a new power meter should provide a well designed study that compares the power as measured by their device against one or both of the "industry standards" and that is clearly SRM and PT (probably in that order). If they don't, one has to wonder why. One explanation is that they did the study and didn't like the results. Another explanation (a lame one) is that they couldn't afford to hire someone to run the study. Now that one is really lame.
     
  12. ahaile

    ahaile New Member

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    Frenchy brings up the wattage list. Back in July, a lot of the mentally-advantaged guys there (Coggan, Robert Chung, etc.) put two iBike+Powertap files through the wringer. Their comments are more meaningful to me than any company-backed study anyway, since they're unbiased. One file was just a normal ride, the other set out to exploit the iBike's weaknesses. The first looked, as Chung said, "surprisingly good." The second not so good, particularly in some sections.

    Since there seems to be a lot of discussion of the iBike on here, I'll include some links and data that I bookmarked from the wattage list. Here are a few stats that James Smith compiled from the good ride, available (with charts) at http://www.pearlandcyclingclub.org/pt_ibike.xls:

    Powertap, iBike
    Average - 254, 254
    Normalized - 276, 279
    NP30 - 292, 295
    NP20 - 299, 301
    NP10 - 303, 309
    NP5 - 316, 322
    P30 (30 second avg) - 445, 524
    (cite: http://tinyurl.com/rpzfq)

    y=.9774x, R^2=.562 (1 second)
    y=.9896x, R^2=.7107 (5 second)
    y=1.0006x, R^2=.8863 (15 second)
    y=1.0027x, R^2=.942 (30 second)
    (cite: http://tinyurl.com/lqkyb)

    And from the bad ride, available at www.pearlandcyclingclub.org/pt_mod2.xls:

    P_avg_PT=241 W, P_Norm_PT=290 W
    P_avg_IB= 291 W, P_Norm_IB=394 W
    (cite: http://tinyurl.com/pjwdm)

    The bad ride wasn't consistenly off -- most of the time the data was good, but there were a few sections (the rider said on rough roads) where it would go bonkers, and they threw off the averages for the whole ride.
     
  13. ahaile

    ahaile New Member

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    RDo, I think you're being a little rough on them. BTW, I found your comments about your visit to the iBike booth really interesting (thanks!), so I posted a link to them on the iBike list. Here's what one of their guys said in response about the Cooper study:

    I'm with you that I would like to see a thorough study, but that's just not the way modern business works these days. Wouldn't it be nice if every company, not just cycling, gave us an external review telling us just how much better or worse their product did than the competitors? But they don't ... and when they do, we know the numbers are probably bunk anyway. Powermeters are no different. My intuition is that the iBike guys are learning their way through running a business, and the early announcement about the Cooper study was just a blunder they made before somebody explained to them how things work. Unfortunately for them, they're stuck with it at the moment. I say just ignore the whole Cooper issue and look for good outside tests. That's why I posted the analysis from the wattage list. It's the best I've seen so far.
     
  14. RapDaddyo

    RapDaddyo Active Member

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    Every business has the right to approach the introduction of a new product any way they choose. The iBike folks can do anything they want. It's their product, their investment and their choice how they want to run their business. I am keenly interested in the availability of new power meter product choices and I applaud any and all companies who spend the money to develop a new product offering. I am basically saying that I am very surprised that someone would come to market with a new technology which purportedly accurately measures power and not have available some kind of white paper on how their device compares with the current industry standards. They have elected not to do so and that is their choice. I am simply surprised and I won't be recommending the iBike to anybody until I see some quality data.
     
  15. frenchyge

    frenchyge New Member

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    I agree that it's not reasonable to expect a company to have to fund a 3rd party comparison of their products vs their competitors. Most times companies have done their own testing to arrive at the +/- X% accuracy claims, but no one believes those anyway.

    3rd party testing needs to be exactly that, not a commissioned comparison funded by the makers of one of the products.
     
  16. ahaile

    ahaile New Member

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    Hey, just to be clear, I'm with you on the iBike marketing: too big claims, too little data. I just hope their engineers are better engineers than their marketers are marketers.
     
  17. RapDaddyo

    RapDaddyo Active Member

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    I feel for them. The power data dropout issue is huge and there is apparently no direct fix (i.e., change the accelerometer). The computer getting shifted on the handlebar by simply pushing the buttons a little firmly and thus causing all the power data to be instantly wrong is also huge. If they don't solve these problems fast, they may have to live with the perception of these shortcomings for a long time. We can't always ride on glassy smooth roads and we do sometimes have to push the buttons. If these very common real-world usage issues cause the computer to drop data or give bad numbers, it's not an inconvenience, it's a disaster.
     
  18. Squint

    Squint New Member

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    Kind of like Powercranks...
     
  19. RapDaddyo

    RapDaddyo Active Member

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    The perfect analogy.
     
  20. ahaile

    ahaile New Member

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    The fact is, these common scenarios don't hardly ever cause problems. Look, we can't castigate them for making claims without data and then jump to our own speculations -- "If ..." -- without data of our own.

    So about dropouts, here's some data. I've got 36 hours of my own files on the iBike, along with 7 hours of iBike/Powertap comparisons from other people. At this point I think I've got more data on the sucker than just about any Joe Schmoe out there. Running some analyses in Excel show that, across all my rides, dropouts occur:

    Total: 2.3% of time
    25th percentile: 1 second
    50th percentile: 2 seconds
    75th percentile: 4 seconds
    Worst: 28 seconds (a bumpy brick road that runs through the middle of town)

    I'd hardly call 2 second dropouts 2.3% of the time a "huge problem" and a "disaster."
     
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