Riding a bike has so much going for it, from being an emissions-free mode of transportation to keeping riders fit and healthy to just being a fun activity, that it's hard to see why so more people aren't doing it.
One big stumbling block for the bike-curious is the risk factor, especially after dark, considering you're balanced on top of a relatively fragile vehicle as you navigate through automobile traffic, where even the smallest car is huge in comparison.
So being visible while riding at night and in the mornings is paramount for staying safe, and while there are other, simpler ways of lighting up your bike, the Monkey Light Pro is certainly the winner when it comes to having the ultimate in customizable lighting on your two-wheeler.
Imagine being able to display custom graphics on your wheels while spinning, and even set up 'playlists' of images or animations to cycle through. Or being able to turn your wheels into traffic control devices by displaying a Stop sign to cross-traffic. Monkey Light Pro can do all of that, and more.
"The Monkey Light Pro has 4 bars of LEDs which are attached together inside your wheel. As your ride the system rotates, using Persistence Of Vision to create an image with its 256 full color LEDs. The Monkey Light Pro has sensors to track its speed, heads-up position and rotation direction. This allows the system to create stable, full-wheel images from 10 to 40 mph (15 to 65 km/h)."
Monkey Light Pro has 4 separate pieces that connect to most common-sized adult bike wheels and are securely fastened to the spokes (said to take about an hour to install and set up). Once installed, images and animations can be downloaded to the units and set up to display on the wheels, and thanks to accelerometers and sensors tracking speed and direction, the display is said to be stable even when accelerating or braking (Fixie riders take note - it also works when riding backwards).
The 256 LED lights on the units allow for 4,096 colors, which can be customized into designs uploaded via Bluetooth. The Monkey Light Pro also allows users to upload up to 1,000 photos or 90 seconds of video to the devices, which means that GIF memes could literally leave the internet and hit the streets on the wheels of your bike.
"Mount the Monkey Light Pro to your bike wheel and take your message to the streets. Once you're rolling the display fills the bike wheel and is visible from both sides. The Monkey Light Pro is waterproof, durable and designed for use on city streets. Crank your bike to eleven."
Right now, the Monkey Light Pro, is in a fundraising campaign on Kickstarter, where support from cyclists, artists, and crowdfunding enthusiasts have already chipped in $56,000 toward the campaign goal of $180,000, which will take it from fully tested prototype to a production model. If you want to see this novel bike/art/safety/activism tool fully come to life, go drop a couple of bucks in the jar over at Kickstarter, or check out their other bike lights at Monkeylectric.
Just one request: If you end up with one of these, please leave Grumpy Cat out of it.