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This article was published on June 8, 2008

Bikelogger: GPS tracking service for cyclists

Bikelogger: GPS tracking service for cyclists
Ernst-Jan Pfauth
Story by

Ernst-Jan Pfauth

Ernst-Jan Pfauth is the former Editor in Chief of Internet at NRC Handelsblad, as well as an acclaimed technology author and columnist. He a Ernst-Jan Pfauth is the former Editor in Chief of Internet at NRC Handelsblad, as well as an acclaimed technology author and columnist. He also served as The Next Web’s blog’s first blogger and Editor in Chief, back in 2008. At De Correspondent, Ernst-Jan serves as publisher, fostering the expansion of the platform.

Geeks like you and me need to work out, especially in the summer. We can’t spend the whole week behind our PC without developing symptoms like an ever growing belly, sun-frightened skin, and black pouches under our eyes. So I’m looking for ways to stay fit. I play ping-pong, hallway soccer, and basketball with my Next Web office buddies, but that’s more about the fun. No, I’d to like sport more seriously, like long-distance cycling. Yet, as a city boy, I have no idea where to go on my bike. German-based start-up Bikelogger is going to help me out. This GPS tracking service helps people find biking pals and saves all the tracks of the community by using the Google Maps API.

Who else than a bike fanatic like Bikelogging founder and CEO Manuel Kirchner can explain better what this service is about? In the opening post on the Bikelogger corporate blog he wrote:

The basic idea of bikelogger is to constantly upload the tracklog of your GPS system, so that friends and other bikers can watch your tracks, download interesting routes and find bike partners in your area.

Geo localization is the next big thing in social networking. It will make the whole experience a different – and more exciting – dimension. I’d love to go to a club and see which Facebook friends are there as well. So it’s not surprising that many developers are now working on the geo localization killer-app. Bikkelogger won’t be the one, but I’m sure Kirchner found himself a good niche within this trend. Cyclists are real sportsmen who in general tend to be crazy about their bike. So a useful application that also gives them the possibility to connect with other bicycle-minded folks will be a welcome attribution to their digital life.

Success won’t come for free though. The beta version of Bikelogger misses a sports-appeal as the design is plain boring. Also, cyclists would probably want to show off with their incredible tracks on Facebook and blogs. Hence the call for some more API magic. If Kirchner combines this with some serious community management, he might become a well-known name in the bicyclists scene.

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