Companies Reward Cyclists For Choosing Bikes Instead of Cars

Despite the fact that Toronto’s politicians want to make the city more dangerous for cyclists (by encouraging more car use and removing bike-focused infrastructure) the people of Toronto are loving bike riding more and more every year. Companies have caught on to this and some are now giving employee some rewards for opting to ride a bicycle instead of using a car.

It helps keep staff healthy and active, and “I actually think it saves money for customers,” he said.
If a consultant has to drive from the suburbs to a client downtown, the client gets charged 50 cents per kilometer, plus $25 for parking. That can add up to a $45 charge for the client.

Toronto Environmental Office director Lawson Oates agrees. Cycling rewards increasingly resonate with younger workers and employers, he said.
“It’s the wave of the future. (Companies) want to attract and retain topnotch employees,” and these people don’t necessarily function in “the old 9-5 mould,” he said.

Read more at The Star

Thanks to Kathryn!

Cyclists’ Cellphones Monitor Pollutants


Bike couriers in Cambridge, UK have been given tricked-out cellphones that monitor the air pollution around them and ten report that information to a research team. What a clever way to gather this information.

The technique is made possible by small wireless pollution sensors and custom software that allows the phones to report levels of air pollutants wherever they happen to be around town.

“Mobiles are everywhere, and now have a lot of computing power,” says Eiman Kanjo, the computer scientist at Cambridge University, UK, leading technical development of the project. “They can provide an alternative to expensive custom hardware and report from places that otherwise aren’t monitored.”

Kanjo and colleagues gave local cycle couriers air-pollution sensors and GPS units that connect to their cellphones via Bluetooth. Custom software lets the phone constantly report the current air quality and location to servers back in the lab.

“They cycle around the city as usual and we receive the data over the cellphone network,” says Kanjo. “We can find out what pollutants people are exposed to and where.”

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