Open Bike Initiative

reserve. ride. return. repeat.

About OBI


The Open Bike Initiative is an ad hoc project focused on designing, developing, piloting and disseminating a model for bike sharing based on open hardware and open source software. The project objectives are to:

1. Design and prototype a low-cost hardware device that incorporates a GPS/cellular module and associated locking mechanism, and attaches on to standard, off-the-shelf bicycles.

2. Create client- and server-side software that communicates with the modules and enables the management of bikes in a bike share system.

3. Implement the system in a small-scale pilot project.

4. Openly distribute our results: (a) make the software freely available under an open source license, (b) publish a technical specification that describes the electronics and mechanical design of the device, and (c) document and publish our experiences with load balancing, maintenance, participant management, wireless services, etc.

If successful, the project could provide a template for a new bike sharing model that could be implemented (relatively) easily and (relatively) inexpensively, even by small organizations. Our hope is that this will result in a significant increase in the number of bike sharing programs, with corresponding environmental, health and economic benefits.

The OBI project launched in January of 2013.  In the summer of 2013 we operated a 30-bike pilot project on several Intel campuses in Hillsboro, Oregon, using a text message-based lock code distribution system we now call "OBI 1.0."  Our "OBI 2.0" GPS-enabled "smart locks" are still under development.  We are planning small-scale pilots for the OBI 2.0 technology at three different locations in early 2014.

The 2013 Pilot


The OBI 1.0 Bike Share Pilot on Intel's Ronler Acres Campus was launched on July 8th, 2013 as a way to address the need for alternative transportation options on a corporate campus located in a suburban setting. The pilot concluded on September 30th, 2013.  Over the course of 3 months, over 300 participants took over 1,100 rides to, from and around Intel's Ronler Acres campus. To secure and check-out the bikes, OBI debuted an innovative low-technology approach to bike sharing dubbed OBI 1.0 (not to be confused with our "OBI 2.0" GPS-enabled smart locks, still under development, with pilots planned for 2014).  Documentation from the 2013 pilot can be downloaded here.  

News


Sep 10th : Presentation at Portland Art Museum

We were honored to have the opportunity to give a talk at the Portland Art Museum in connection with their fantastic Cyclepedia exhibit.  The slides we used are linked below (note: these are CC-by-3.0 licensed). We also posed for a (partial) team photo.

OBI_PAM_06SEP13

OBI_team_at_PAM

Aug 15th : Phase I Implementation Materials Available Now

With the first month of running our low tech model (aka Phase I) under our belts, we thought it was time to share our Phase I implementation materials. Check out the White Papers section for the Phase I Implementation Outline and code and files for Phase I. This is the first version of these materials, so we appreciate your understanding that these materials are a work in progress.

Email us at info@openbikeinitiative.org if you have questions or feedback.

Photo Gallery


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Downloads


Interested in implementing a Bike Share on your campus? Want to do so in an innovative, inexpensive, user friendly way? Below you will find the resources you need in order to do so. In the OBI 1.0 Implementation Guide you will find a detailed, step by step account of the Bike Share Pilot that took place on Intel's Ronler Acres Campus during the Summer of 2013, along with the lessons learned from our Bike Share Pilot and a guide on how to implement your own version. On this page you will also find an explanation of the OBI 1.0 Code, the 1.0 Install Package and the 1.0 Source Code. If you have additional questions, please contact us via the Contact form or by e-mailing us at: info@openbikeinitiative.org.
  1. OBI 1.0 Implementation Guide Full
  2. OBI 1.0 Implementation Guide Lite
  3. OBI 1.0 Technical Guide
  4. OBI 1.0  Code Explanation
  5. OBI 1.0 Binary Install
  6. OBI 1.0  Source Code
 (By special request we've also added a stand-alone version of Appendix F of the full Guide; this Appendix describes a method for bicycle seat post retention we call the Keating Technique [.pdf]) 



Team


Many people have made important contributions to the project. At the great risk of missing key people, a list is attempted below.

As of February 2014, the core project management team is Brad Biddle, Kevin Bross, Leonard Cano, Courtney Martin and Joel Morrissette. The core technology development team includes Kevin and Joel, along with Cailan Collet, Chris Crase, Mustafa Haswarey, Jeff Murry and Bianca Viggiano. John MacArthur also plays an active role with the project. John and Bianca are affiliated with Portland State University; the rest of the team is affiliated with Intel Corporation but engaged on this project on a volunteer, personal time basis.

Individuals from the Bicycle Transportation Alliance (Rob Sadowsky and Stephanie Noll), the Community Cycling Center (Jonnie Ling and James Keating), Nike (Caitlin Williams), the Oregon Transportation Research and Education Consortium (Hau Hagedorn and John MacArthur), and the Westside Transportation Alliance (Heather McCarey, Jenny Cadigan) helped create the project and have provided critical support.

The OBI 1.0 technology was developed primarily by John Benner. The OBI 1.0 pilot was managed by Robinson Eaton and Meera Gajjar. Mike Armstrong, Garrett Beecher, Giedre Novikaite and Mordechai Sadowsky made key contributions.

Significant assistance with the OBI 2.0 technology (mechanical design, electronics and software) has been provided by: Carter Anderson, Aslam Haswarey, Brian Jensen, Greg Perry and Bill MacCracken. Matt Groener provided important software inputs, plus was part of the initial project launch team.

Intel provided support and resources that made the project possible. Special thanks to Ann Armstrong, Todd Brady, Michael Jacobson and Anne Marie McSwiggan.

Thanks also to our friends at Advanced Sports (Breezer), Bikes Make Life Better, Custom Contract Manufacturing, Eagle Precision Sheet Metal, Sprint and Urban Racks for their support.

Contact


Drop us a Line!

The team at Open Bike Initiative are fans of rapid prototyping and early feedback. Drop us a line and tell us what you think of the program so far. We won't share, sell or otherwise disseminate your contact info - we just need it to get back in touch with you.

Email:
info (at) openbikeinitiative (dawt) org