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MM: BMW's Motorcycle Of The Future; Transmitting Data Through Touch

In this episode, BMW shows off the motorcycle of the future and a communication system that transmits data through human touch.

BMW’s Future Motorcycle

What does the future of motorcycles look like? If the BMW Group has its way, it is the BMW Motorrad Vision Next 100, the latest and final concept of BMW’s Vision Next series. The motorcycle contains self-balancing systems to keep the bike upright both when standing and in motion. 

The bike includes a “Digital Companion,” which offers riding advice and adjustment ideas to optimize the experience, and a system called “The Visor,” which is a pair of glasses that spans the field of vision and is controlled by eye movements. These systems can send active feedback about road conditions to the rider while continuously adjusting the ride of the bike to fit the rider’s driving style. 

The bike would use a matte black “flexframe” that's nubile and allows the bike to turn without the joints found on today’s motorcycles. With the flexframe, when a rider turns the handlebar, it adjusts the entire frame to change the direction of the bike; at low speeds only a slight input is required, while at high speeds it needs strong input to change course. This should increase the safety of riding the bike so that a small twitch at 100 mph isn't going to shoot the bike in an unexpected new direction.

The seat, upper frame cover and wings of the motorcycle are made of carbon, and the bike will run on a to-be-determined "non-gasoline power source." 


Could this concept propel motorcycle design in a whole new direction? Tell us what you think by leaving your comments below. 

Touching For Data

It’s said a lot of information can be revealed through a handshake — confidence, nervousness, weakness, strength — and soon, contact information.

Panasonic has recently been demonstrating a new prototype communication system where data is transmitted through human touch. While there isn’t much information available about the system, Panasonic says the prototype uses electric field communication technology to transmit data from thing-to-thing, human-to-human and human-to-thing.

In demonstrations, a person holding a color-coded ball and touching a sensor connected to a lamp, would change the color of the lamp. Another example showed how, just by shaking hands, color information would travel from a watch, through the handshake, and into a woman’s dress changing the color.

Panasonic says the human body transmission device is a secure way to transmit information since the data is transmitted through the body and only to objects that are physically touched. 

Potential future uses for the system could be unlocking doors just by touching the doorknob or exchanging business contact information simply by shaking hands.


How do you see manufacturers incorporating this type of technology in their products? Tell us what you think by leaving your comments below.

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