Posts Tagged ‘Descent’

Turns Out That You Can’t “Win” Strava “King of the Mountain” in the Marin Headlands Without a Lot of Speeding

Friday, September 21st, 2012

You know, on your bike, on Conzelman, coming down from Hawk Hill at an average speed of 31 MPH.

See?

Click to expand

What’s the limit on Conzelman, uphill or down? 25 MPH.

Do people get tickets from the park police for speeding on Conzelman? I don’t know, but I know people driving cars do.

Is that San Francisco-based Strava app affecting how people behave?

Showing How STRAVA, Inc is Dealing with Its Legal Challenges: Here’s What the “Hyde Street Bomb!” Looks Like

Wednesday, June 20th, 2012

Take a look at this segment created by the “Strava Community” of troubled Strava, Inc. owners, managers, and/or users.

See? This is a bike trip down Nob Hill through the Tenderloin to the Mid Market:

Click to expand

Note the innocuous-sounding title: Hyde/Market st.

But also note the URL up there. The name of this segment used to be “Hyde Street Bomb!” But that doesn’t look so hot when you’re in the national news for getting sued.

Oh, here it is, have a go on the YouTube – will the cyclist beat all those cagers in Priuseses what stop for red lights? Hells yes:

Now, do you think that the “Strava Community” might have had an effect on the behavior of this cyclist?

You Make The Call.

And oh, here’s how that Strava webpage looked before, was it just a day ago? Two days ago? I don’t know. But this is quite a recent change. Alls I know is that somebody in the “Strava Community,” be it an owner, manager, legal advisor, person following instructions from a legal advisor, cyclist, or, really, anybody in the entire world, created this segment and/or edited it.

The people at Strava, Inc. aren’t what you call transparent, so it’s hard to tell.

Anyway, here’s your Hyde Street Bomb!

Does registering for Strava and racing down Nob Hill in this fashion make you an “athlete?”

Again, You Make The Call.

So Let’s Hear From Michael Horvath, CEO and Co-Founder of Troubled, SF-Based STRAVA, Inc. – Lawsuit Blog Post

Tuesday, June 19th, 2012

Well here’s The Statement, from a few days back:

“Stand with Us”

UH, “STAND WITH US” WHILE WE GET SUED INTO OBLIVION? IS THAT WHAT YOU’RE TALKING ABOUT ON THE EVE OF THE NEWS OF YOUR BIG WRONGFUL DEATH LAWSUIT? OK.

“Posted by Michael Horvath on June 17th, 2012″

JUNE 17TH – LOOK AT THE TIMING, JUST BEFORE THE STATUTE OF LIMITATIONS. MMMM…

Each and every day we strive to improve Strava for you,­ the athlete. We are athletes too, just like you.

LET’S SEE HERE, SIGNING UP FOR STRAVA = BEING AN ATHLETE. GOT IT. YOU DON’T HAVE TO TELL ME TWICE. OH,  WELL I GUESS YOU JUST DID. UH, ALL RIGHT, YOU DON’T HAVE TO TELL ME _THREE_ TIMES.

As the Strava community grows, we all need to follow a few simple guideposts to ensure that Strava’s impact is positive.

GUIDEPOSTS AND NOT RULES? ALL RIGHT.

This is what we, the Strava community, stand for:

NOW WAIT A SECOND, AREN’T YOU THE FOUNDER AND CEO, MICHAEL HORVATH? I THINK SO. BUT ARE YOU A PART OF THE “STRAVA COMMUNITY?” REALLY? BUT _YOUR_ COMPANY IS GETTING SUED THOUGH, RIGHT? NOT THE “ATHLETES” WHAT MAKE UP YOUR USER BASE. I THINK YOU ARE CONFLATING THE OWNERS/MANAGERS OF STRAVA WITH THE USERS OF STRAVA, JUST SAYING. ALL RIGHT, OFF YOU GO THEN…

We know the rules. Laws and rules are created for our protection. Cycling, running and swimming are inherently dangerous and following the law, and common sense, when it comes to traffic, weather, or conditions, reduces our odds of getting hurt or hurting others. It’s as simple as that.

SO, I’LL STILL BE ABLE TO HAVE MY TIMES POSTED SHOWING ME GOING 20 MPH OVER THE LIMIT? CAUSE, YOU SEE, THAT’S NOT FOLLOWING THE “LAWS,” RIGHT? BUT I GUESS, AFTER YOU TALKED WITH A LAWYER OR TWO, YOU’RE TELLING YOUR USERS, THE SAINTED “ATHLETES” YOU WRITE ABOUT, TO FOLLOW THE LAW? OK FINE.

We rest. We listen to our bodies to avoid injury and we inspire in ways other than by being #1. We don’t burn ourselves out. We enjoy our recovery days because they too tell our story on Strava.

WHAT DOES THIS HAVE TO DO WITH YOU BEING SUED? DOES THIS EVEN BELONG HERE?

We kudo sportsmanship. We all want to get kudos by being great at our sport. We are courteous and treat others with respect. We earn our spots on the leaderboards through clean competition.

UH, KUDO IS NOT A VERB, RIGHT? OK YOU KNOW THAT BUT YOU’RE BREAKING NEW GROUND, OK FINE. UH, IS BIKE-RIDING A SPORT? I THINK I’M SEEING THE PROBLEM HERE. WAS CHRIS BUCCHERE ENGAGING IN SPORT WHEN HE WAS GOING WAY TOO FAST ACROSS MARKET STREET? SHOULD HE HAVE BEEN? IS DRIVING A CAR DOWN MARKET STREET A SPORT? SHOULD IT BE? I DON’T THINK SO. AND IF MEMBERS OF THE “STRAVA COMMUNITY” AREN’T COURTEOUS AND RESPECTFUL, DO THEY GET COUNSELING OR SOMETHING? OR DO THEY JUST GET KICKED OUT? CAUSE  I CAN THINK OF A FEW OF YOUR MEMBERS WHO HAVEN’T KILLED THEMSELVES/OTHERS, SO, YOU KNOW, THEY’RE NOT AS WELL-KNOWN AS SOME OF THE OTHER MEMBERS OF THE STRAVA FAMILY, BUT THEY DON’T MEET YOUR STANDARD AS STATED HERE – THEY AIN’T COURTEOUS/RESPECTFUL AT ALL. AND LASTLY, DOES “CLEAN COMPETITION” INCLUDE RUNNING RED LIGHTS? I’M NOT SURE.

We think ahead. We showcase a lot of awesome data about where we go, who we work out with and how hard we push ourselves. If we don’t want everyone to know what we’re up to, we take the necessary privacy precautions before we upload, like setting privacy zones and choosing who can follow us and what they can see.

UH ISN’T THIS A MISH-MASH OF THREE DIFFERENT CONCEPTS?

We’ve got each other’s backs. We watch out for one another. The community does what it can to keep things safe for everyone by looking out for potentially dangerous situations and flagging segments as hazardous.

SO, SELF-POLICING IS THE ORDER OF THE DAY AT STRAVA? HEY, DIDN’T THE “SOUTH PARK DESCENT” GET FLAGGED AFTER KIM FLINT’S DEATH? I THINK IT DID. BUT DIDN’T IT COME BACK, COURTESY OF THE “STRAVA COMMUNITY?” YES IT DID, AND WITH HIGHER SPEEDS THAN WHAT KIM FLINT “ACHIEVED.”

If you want to be part of the Strava community, we’d like you to stand with us and take these guideposts to heart.

SO, YOU’RE GOING TO START KICKING PEOPLE OUT? ALL RIGHT. I DON’T BELIEVE WHAT YOU AND YOUR LAWYERS ARE SAYING HERE, BUT ALL RIGHT.

AND YOU STILL HAVE NOTHING TO SAY ABOUT KIM FLINT OR CHRIS BUCCHERE?

ALL RIGHT.

Now, let’s hear from Paul Kapustka of Mobile Sports Report:

“Something tells us that if lawyers are getting involved, it’s not going to be as simple as a statement on a blog to prove that Strava.com’s competitions didn’t cause harm. Or that the bad apples aren’t a part of the Strava.com community. There are going to be many who decry the lawsuit as some part of a nanny-state weirdness, but there is probably some legitimate question to be asked whether or not a site that promotes virtual competitions on real streets and trails is responsible for the participants’ actions, much in the way a 10K race must take out insurance to cover its runners. I have a feeling this may be the tip of the iceberg for such sites like Strava.com.”

The Resurrection of the Dangerous “SouthParkDrive Descent,” the 54 MPH(!) Strava Segment That Killed Cyclist Kim Flint

Friday, June 1st, 2012

Get up to speed on the issue of the death of former avid Strava user Kim Flint right here:

Did attempt to set speed record cause cyclist’s death?

That was about two years back.

Was that segment “dangerous?”

No matter, it came back, as you can see here:

Click to expand

Now, it’s flagged for being dangerous (what, just yesterday?), but not before tons of people attempted to beat Kim Flynt’s time, to become “King of the Mountain” (KOM) once again.

Here are the deets from a Reader Just Like You, Brandon:

“BTW, speaking of Strava and the cyclist who died in Berkeley in 2010 trying to reclaim his recently eclipsed “KOM” on the South Park Drive descent in Berkeley’s Tilden Park, the same segment has now reappeared on Strava again:
http://app.strava.com/segments/1243472

The full descent segment was flagged after Kim Flynt’s death, but a Strava user has redrawn the segment now starting it a little below the top and ending it enough before the bottom to get around the software blocking the segment.

Note that Kim Flynt’s once “record” descent is now all the way down in 7 way tie for 16th place:

16 Kim Flint
Jun 06, 2010
66.4km/h 152bpm 300W – 1:56

And the fastest time was set just a few days ago now:

Tim Medina
May 20, 2012
72.6km/h 168bpm 155W – 1:46

That’s over 45 mph avg (with a max. of 54 mph)!”

What’s the speed limit there, 30 MPH?

Does Strava encourage speeding? For example, how fast was Strava fan and cyclist Chris Bucchere going down Castro before hit collided with pedestrian Sutchi Hui? (Has there been a measurement done from the video yet?) Shouldn’t Strava ban segments with speeding in them?

Strava wants new customers, Strava wants to make money, right? This is how they do it, they let riders do what the riders want and then when the media focuses on a particularly dangerous segment, it all of a sudden gets flagged and goes down the memory hole.

Is that how you roll, Strava?

So Far, the SFPD and George Gascon Have Handled the Chris Bucchere Case Perfectly. But Does Divis Have Stop Signs?

Friday, April 27th, 2012

Boy, the Internet is full of criticism these days over how the SFPD and the San Francisco District Attorney’s Office have been handling the cyclist Chris Bucchere vs. pedestrian Sutchi Hui case.

And yet, what have they done wrong so far? Nothing that I can see.

Wisely, they aren’t trying to prove things that are tough to prove to the very high standard required, so stuff like who used Chris Bucchere’s online accounts to post his post-accident thoughts and what color what traffic light was when – that stuff, isn’t going to matter all that much if a criminal trial comes.

So that’s fine.

But there’s this:

““We have a witness that puts him blowing stop signs and lights on Divisadero Street,” the captain added.”

But the part of Divisadero that’s in the area doesn’t actually have stop signs.*

Check it out on the YouTube. The beginning part of this video, The Strava “Castro Street Bomb” (aka Castro Street Descent) shows the southern terminus of Divisadero.

As you can see, there aren’t any stop signs there.

But maybe the captain was talking about Castro Street?

If that’s the case, the question then becomes what would motivate a cyclist to behave in the ways alleged.

But we’ll find out soon enough…

*And the other part of Divisadero up in Pacific Heights far to the north? Wow, that’s probably the last place in the world where you’d want to be blowing stop signs on a bike.

Did Cyclist Chris Bucchere Discuss Prizes for “Winning” Strava Segments Just Four Days Before His Castro Collision?

Friday, April 13th, 2012

Well, you make the call:

Of course you can conclude, at this early date, exactly this:

“Strava is not responsible for Chris’ actions…”

(That one comes from one of Chris Bucchere’s cycling buddies, BTW.)

Or, of course, you can conclude that Strava is totally responsible for the recent collision in the Castro.

Or you can be like me and remain unsure of the connection between the death of pedestrian Sutchi Hui and Strava.

Your choice.

Hey, let’s see what cyclists are saying about Strava and the recent pedestrian death in the Castro:

“as a STRAVA user, my first thought when I saw that he was using STRAVA was that he was trying to post the best time on a segment (STRAVA’s social aspect includes public leaderboards, which is actually kind of fun). looks like that stretch of Castro is, indeed, a marked segment, which is absolutely fucking stupid and likely encouraged in some small way his reckless behavior.”

And there’s this:

“I actually think the social media angle — especially the Strava stuff — the the most interesting part of this story. I’m not sure I’m ready to fully demonize Chris Bucchere quite yet — presumably he’s a human being and, thus, a crooked timber like the rest of us. But as someone interested in social media including the effects of the “gamification” movement on our culture, I find Strava’s role fascinating. And a great example of “gamification” being applied to something haphazardly and without thinking through the negative consequences… (Yes, I fucking hate the word “gamification,” but that’s all I can think of.) STRAVA’s probably going to have some liability here.”

And then there’s this:

“Strava removes segments flagged as dangerous for exactly this reason. But a lot of riders (myself included) complained that it wasn’t effective, because people with axes to grind were flagging all segments in certain places, rendering the site effectively useless. I don’t know what their policy is on dangerous segments now.”

And here’s some more, from Alan of Scarlet Fire,  on gamification and Strava in general:

Strava ‘s biggest strength lies within the ingenious “segments” feature.
Upload a gpx track of your completed ride, and Strava analyses the data with all the usual stats you’d expect, plus a breakdown of specific segments of the ride, eg hill climbs.

Here’s the clever bit -
It knows who else has completed those segments, and ranks everybody according to time. The fastest gets a KOM, King of the mountain achievement. (Yes, girls, you get QOM’s).
Most people wouldn’t bother to go to the trouble of timing themselves on individual climbs within their ride. Way too much hassle! Strava does it automatically, and awards you an achievement when you beat your personal best (PB).

Strava app screenshot (Samsung Galaxy S2)

If a section of your route doesn’t already appear as a segment, no problem – simply define it as a new segment and see how you rank. The premium version of the service also allows you to break the table down by age range and weight ranges.

Recently, whilst out on a ride, I was aware that a friend had been the first to log a new segment for a particular climb (there aren’t that many Strava users in North Wales yet!) and had the KOM award. Instead of going at my usual pace, the gaming instinct kicked in, and I found myself visiting a very high heart rate zone, and putting in a lot of effort. Later, when I uploaded my GPS data to Strava it was hugely satisfying to realise that I had beaten his time by almost 2 minutes and claimed the KOM. He also got an email from Strava saying I’d beaten his time. Nice.

Silly and childish? Very, I know.
Did it feel good? Hell, yes..
Did I get a better workout? Definitely.
Will I work harder on future climbs because this technology will let me know automatically whenever I set a new PB on specific climbs? Very likely.”

 

Video of What It Looks Like to Ride Strava.Com’s “Castro Street Bomb” – Was Chris Bucchere Racing Down Castro Street?

Monday, April 9th, 2012

Here’s the latest regarding the Castro District’s international news:

Expect Strava to get subpoenaed if this tragic story of reckless cycling and a pedestrian death goes to court.”

And here’s the Strava.Com segment what used to be called the Castro Street Bomb (and then the Castro Street Descent). It’s not too exciting. Rather sedate, actually. But I’m sure if you’re hauling butt to become the latest Strava.Com “KOM” (King of the Mountain) and you may or may not be “Idaho Rolling” through red lights, then it could be very exciting / addicting:

Strava still has lots of downhill “bomb” segments listed about town of course. How about the Hyde Street Bomb or the 20th Street Bomb?

What if I started a Market Street Drag Race website for car drivers? They could make a segment like “Second Street to Sixth Street Drag” or something and people could keep track of their times using the GPS. Would you say that I was encouraging recklessness? Or not?

And here’s part of the Strava Kills” topic at the MTBR.Com forums:

Unfortunately, there is no simple way for the biking community to pass on the message of “we are really sorry for your loss, please don’t judge all bikers. this particular individual is an a-hole, please stick it to him in every way possible”.

Sad thing is, even as this story makes it’s way around the cycling community, there are people that pull the same **** — running reds/stop signs/etc. from SF down to SCruz — that won’t connect this situation with possibilities around their own actions.”

And I’d link you to what they’re saying at the SF Fixed.Com boards but I don’t know how to do that. (It’s a bit contentious over there these days, I understand.)

And this just in:

…nothing is worse than red lights.

CVC 21456: Did Pedestrian Sutchi Hui Have the Right-of-Way When He Walked Onto Castro Street? Possibly Not

Friday, April 6th, 2012

Let’s review:

“The light turned red as I was cruising through the middle of the intersection and then, almost instantly, the southern crosswalk on Market and Castro filled up with people coming from both directions.

So it looks as if cyclist Chris Bucchere didn’t run a red light.

Now, what about the law?

“21456.  Whenever a pedestrian control signal showing the words “WALK” or “WAIT” or “DON’T WALK” or other approved symbol is in place, the signal shall indicate as follows:

(a) “WALK” or approved “Walking Person” symbol. A pedestrian facing the signal may proceed across the roadway in the direction of the signal, but shall yield the right-of-way to vehicles lawfully within the intersection at the time that signal is first shown….”

What this is saying is that pedestrians in California need to let traffic clear an intersection before walking when the WALK turns on for them.

(Most pedestrians in San Francisco don’t seem to know this….)

Did STRAVA.Com Help Kill Pedestrian Sutchi Hui? Timing Yourself on the “Castro Street Descent” (AKA Castro Street Bomb)

Friday, April 6th, 2012

I don’t know, did Chris Bucchere’s speed going down Castro Street last week have anything to do with STRAVA?

You know, the way it had something to do with a death in Berkeley back in 2009?

You Make The Call:

Do you see the “Castro Street Descent” there? Up until March 29, 2012, that said Castro Street Bomb. Like when you go “bombing” down the street.

Check it:

I don’t know, Strava.

Care to say anything about this?

Michael Horvath 
Co-Founder & CEO
Jordan Kobert 
VP Business Development
Mark Shaw 
VP Engineering
Rachael Parsons 
VP Marketing
Greg Gretsch 
Board Member
Jamie McJunkin 
Board Member
Mark Gainey 
Board Member
Ariel Poler 
Board Member