19
Jun
Helmet-Thumb

Google Glass may be cool and all, but it just isn't fast enough. No, it's not too laggy, it's just intended for people who have both feet planted firmly on the ground. Okay, Google may have launched Glass with a skydiving demonstration, but that was about recording video. If you want something that is genuinely useful while moving at 80 mph, you'll need something a little more dedicated. Now that I have your attention, I present to you the LiveMap motorbike helmet with navigation currently attracting attention over at Indiegogo.

Helmet1

This helmet actually aims to scratch a particular itch. Motorcyclists need access to maps just like everyone else, but relying on a touch-screen GPS, smartphone, or whipping out a paper map isn't quite as safe when there is nothing shielding the driver from the outside world (and lets be frank, whipping out a map while driving isn't practical for anyone). Since helmets already functions as motorcyclists' windshields, they might as well serve as their navigation assistants as well. The LiveMap helmet places all of the necessary directions front and center.

Helmet2 Helmet4

Helmet3

Proposed features:

  • Augmented reality for easy and user-friendly navigation
  • Clearly visible collimated image i.e. it is always in focus, just like that in scope sights
  • Full-color, translucent picture is projected right on the visor like in a F-35 fighter helmet, it's safe, provides unobstructed view, doesn't distract attention and eliminates the need for a separate display
  • Supposed size of the system fits a motorcycle helmet - our helmet is going to be just a bit bigger than usual
  • Two 3000 mAh batteries for a long operation time
  • Microphone for voice control that keeps both hands free for driving
  • Two earphones
  • Light sensor for adjusting the image brightness according to external light conditions
  • G-sensor, gyroscope, digital compass for head movement tracking  (the picture changes according to the view direction)
  • Our own minimalistic interface that will be used instead of standard Android interface. Thus you will not be able to play games or watch video on the go, sorry!

Unlike Google Glass, the LiveMap helmet does not require eyes to readjust before looking at the material. Nevertheless, I wonder if having content placed right before a driver's eyes might prove to be too distracting. Concerns aside, the helmet will have support for 4G LTE, so at least the map data should download and recalculate speedily.

Helmet5

This Russian project already has the support of the Moscow Department of Science, Industrial Policy and Enterprise; the State Foundation for Assistance to Small Innovative Enterprises in Science and Technology of Russian Federation; and the Skolkovo Foundation. The campaign hopes to raise $150,000 by July 12. If all goes as planned, the helmet will ship to North America and Australia in 2014 before reaching Europe and Japan the following year. Get more details in the video below:

Thanks, Tim Donaworth.

Source: Indiegogo

Bertel King, Jr.
Born and raised in the rural South, Bertel knows what it's like to live without 4G LTE - or 3G, for that matter. The only things he likes sweeter than his tea are his gadgets, and while few objects burn more than a metal phone on a summer day, he prefers them that way anyway.

  • David Margolin

    i like it but i fear we are seriously gonna all end up looking like tony stark in a few years

    • Tony Stark

      And that's a bad thing? ;)

      • David Margolin

        nopes... but sounds like suits and helmets of the future will be quite a bit more expensive...
        great name btw :)

        • Mike Reid

          The "Stark's" of the world can afford them.

  • http://jordanhotmann.com/ Jordan Hotmann

    Stinking cool, but at $1500 I'm afraid I'll just have to stick to my current routine of pulling over, pulling my phone out of my pocket, and hoping to remember the directions.

    • EH101

      I feel you. It's hard enough to justify a $300-$500 helmet every once in a while (when my old helmets work just fine, mind you), but $1500? Doesn't seem remotely justifiable.

  • Danny Davis

    The potential is there. But seems to cover the middle screen to much blocking road view in map view. I think that is bad ass. Now that us some interesting innovation. I always thought it was crazy/dumb to see peiple riding bike taking in a phone. Price is steep though.

    • Cory_S

      Did you see the caption under the map blocking the middle of the road? It goes away when you start moving..

      • Danny Davis

        Have you seen people wreck at 5, 10, 15 miles an hr from the slightest distraction? A distraction is a distraction.

        • Mike Harris

          "Overview map can be viewed anytime your speed is near zero"

          I agree that any distraction is bad, but 10 and 15 is nowhere near zero.

          • Craig Swinson

            Not sure about your bike but mine can go from 0-15 in about .6 of a second.

  • eli

    i would use this in my car

    • http://jordanhotmann.com/ Jordan Hotmann

      That would be hilarious to see!

      • Tyler

        Not if he owns an Arial Atom. :)

    • TheWhiteLotus

      I would use this wherever I go, regardless of whether I'm in a vehicle or not.

      • Kenny O

        "If I had LiveMap......."

    • GraveUypo

      i was thinking the same. i'd use a white racing suit all the time and change my name to stig

      • akshay7394

        or a black one and be Racer X

  • A

    This is so cool!

  • Nate Weaver

    This is kind of a great idea, kind of not.

    Bluetooth headsets mounted in helmets have been available for years, and they have a very limited audience because of what's practical to use while riding. Helpful for riders on long touring rides with long slabs of freeway and less piloting attention needed, but almost useless for people who ride in urban areas.

    Riding in urban traffic and staying alive for more than a year or two needs a level of attention that just can't be described. Imagine playing an intense video game where if you get distracted for a quarter second at the wrong moment, you can truly die. That's coming from somebody who breaks the rules of cars and cellphones constantly (hand slap).

    If they put limits on what can be done while in motion, I'd think that's better. Again, coming from somebody who laughs at GPS unit "don't use while driving" warnings.

    I'm a total gadget nerd. But I'd be super careful with this thing.

    • Nate Weaver

      Here's another thing: a LOT of motorcyclists ride bikes to have some blessed time away from phones. Blasphemy on an Android site I know, but it's true.

      I wish them luck because it's obvious something like this is inevitable for motorcyclists on the longest timeline, but it's gonna be a uphill battle as a business in a big bad way. Their challenges are immense, and have nothing to do with mounting a phone and an LCD in a helmet.

    • qu4ttro

      apparently you didnt even bother to read the article before posting...

      • Nate Weaver

        No, I did. What did I miss in your opinion?

        • Sorian

          According to the video (timecode 4:16), at high speeds, you see the minimal amount of info, Speed info in top left, next turn top right, both about the size of a medium avatar image (about double the size of everyone's here).

          • Nate Weaver

            It has little to do with how much is in your field of view. It's about having to think about phone/computer issues and operation while you're dodging cagers doing all the things that almost kill us on a daily basis.

            Do you ride? If not, this might be lost on you.

          • Ximinez

            If you can't ignore the speedometer in the corner while maneuvering you probably shouldn't be riding at all. It's all about focus.

          • Cory_S

            You just really aren't getting what he means here. I only rode for a few years and I 100% get what he's saying. It's a distraction, a minimal one for arguments sake, but any distraction at all in an urban city can be disastrous.

            Edit: the reason i don't ride anymore is I couldn't take the stress of almost being killed everyday by a texting lane changing twat.

          • Ximinez

            Yes I am. It's less of a distraction to check your speedo in the corner of the glass than it is to check it on the bike.

          • Matti

            No, it's not. You see, when you're looking at the speedo on your bike's instrumentation, you're making a conscious decision to momentarily shift focus to something else. With this helmet display you can't.

            There's always something at the corner of your vision, trying to steal your focus. It'd be fine if it was a static image, but a moving speedometer or or constantly scrolling map *will* distract you, whether you realize it or not.

            Not saying it won't work, but they have to be very, very careful about how they go about implementing this technology. It's not as simple as having a HUD display on your car's windscreen. Speedometers should work with a little testing, but mapping and traffic info will be much, much harder to implement.

          • Matthew Fry

            Ron's Glass review stated that after a few days your eyes just start not seeing the overlaid stuff it until you focus on it like your nose so maybe it wouldn't be too bad.

          • CaptCook

            That's a total lie, because then advertisements would not work. Having smartphone for years, I still can't read an intellecually-intense work when Google ads keep scrolling at the bottom of the screen. Yes, it's small and it's out of sight, but because it is changing, it will forcefully grab your attention.
            It's also like saying that you wouldn't notice white lanes on the road anymore after a couple days of riding.

            But yeah, this helmet would be great for soccer moms in their SUVs, to be even safer, and for their tarts running in the field, just so they don't lose track of where the net is.

    • Ryan Stewart

      I use mine all of the time in the city. It has a great intercom option so we can warn each other about that woman in the van not paying attention.

      Also if it interfaced with future bikes having my dash in view instead if looking down would be safer.

  • troph

    Good idea, but I think the price could be scaled down significantly if we just took advantage of the smartphone processor we already have in our pockets (connect with direct wifi, bluetooth, or physical cable, etc.). Just have hud display and sensors, but use the smartphone processor to power this (release a dedicated app).

    • joser116

      I think this would be more of a hassle. It is better for all the technologies to be integrated to avoid problems at such high risk situations like riding a motorcycle.

    • brandonmwest

      That would potentially bring the consumer cost down but it would increase the R&D cost dramatically. Known hardware + known software is way easier to build for, test, and support versus trying to build a universal solution.

      • Ximinez

        However, it would allow for users to upgrade their hardware without replacing the helmet.

  • Christopher Robert

    put this in a pair of sunglasses that blue tooth to my phone and i would give up on google glass

  • Greg Nelson

    I've been riding for 20 years and I would never have any kind of an empirical distraction device such as this. The task at hand is all any motorcyclist should be worried about with texting, talking cagers everywhere.

    • Matti

      This x 1000.
      Been a motorcyclist for about 15 years myself. I have enough worries keeping myself from getting killed by soccer mums in their stupid ugly vehicles (SUVs) as it is, even at slow speeds. Last thing I'd want is an additional distraction.

      Plus, I use motorcycling as a form of escapism - I have a cage for work commuting - and would rather detach myself from all forms of technology (excluding what goes into my motorcycle) while enjoying my passion. Just the thought of having to interact with something that's not my bike is unacceptable in my book.

      Then again, I'm probably old-skool. Pizza delivery guys might like this helmet if it gets them to avoid traffic, I dunno.

  • Brandon Watkins

    ......words can't describe how excited I am!!! Damn I need 1500$! Who wants to invest in the get me this helmet please fund?

  • a.d.AM

    I have a fantastic drawing and video of a flying car that travels in time and runs on a Mr Fusion. It literally runs on trash!!! Send me some money so we can R&D this thing guyz!!

    • Matti

      BANG CRASH BOOM?

  • natu

    as a biker myself this sound exciting, but is there any health impact to brain ?
    I mean, a helmet with lot of electronics & radio EM waves covers our head, isn't that scary ?

    • Azaraith

      You have radio/EM waves going through your head at all times, even if you don't own a TV, router or cellphone. No need to worry here.

  • LewisSD

    Finally! I have been waiting for something like this to come out.

  • Ryan Stewart

    I'd rather just have something that goes in an existing helmet like a glass option. I'm too attached to my SHOEI.

  • Steve McTravis

    1st gen of Jarvis :3

  • Agcu

    I'm positively salivating over this.

  • ash71ish

    Ironman on the way.

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  • https://www.facebook.com/pages/Sexy-Atheists/156832574380566 Max Frisson

    I had an intercom with music a few years ago. I found it so annoying and distracting that I removed it. I sometimes, always longer rides, will put the earbuds from my iPhone in and run a playlist. But I find that too distracting in the city.

    I'm an anomaly among motorcyclists - I like to ride by myself, quietly or at least unobtrusively. I don't engage in social motorcycling, don't like group rides and rallies. I got into motorcycles because it is something you can do without others and because horses are a lot more work.

  • master94

    I want this so much. Not only that but I could never understand why it wasn't done before. Seems so obvious. Makes a lot more sense than Google Glass when you think about it.

  • r00t4rd3d

    This idea is moronic and very unsafe.

  • is4u2p

    Okay, who do I make the check out to?

  • Retro

    Too much of a distraction... I've been riding for years and there is no way I'd use this product especially at this price point. It's going to be interesting to see the sales analysis after production. I'd also be interested in the market research that drove this idea. Was riders polled or us this the brain child of a non rider?

  • Dodge

    Some great comments... I ride every day, to and fro to work through rush hour and on the weekends for joy. I always wear a helmet, but not for safety per se, more for keeping objects from peeling the skin off my face and bouncing the hefty bugs into the ditch. Now, I can say that this would be a distraction; but I was thinking about a more reasonable use. If they could actually use the image of the environs around you, 365 degrees, and identify movement of everything in that range, and on the peripheral of the view in the helmet indicate where threats are and if they are moving towards or away... well, that would be something I would consider. I have to do that each and every day in rush hour and that ability is what keeps you alive.

  • http://dbakeca.com Dbakeca Italia

    great idea

  • Cranston Snord

    What a dumb fu*k idea! As if a motorcycle rider needs all the distractions. Oh wait, I forgot, texting and driving is really a *good* idea, right?

  • mick lovell

    yes. because when you are negotiating a corner at 50mph + with a vehicle coming the other way - you really need a map suddenly popping up in your field of vision.

  • Dave Smith

    Having an Opaque visor to reflect the image is not road legal.