These bicycle helmets will map stress-level of riding in Brooklyn

EEG enabled helmets will help make a map of where it's scariest to bike in cities.

Bike in Crown Heights Photo by Brady Dale

Data about stress may help policymakers see where bike infrastructure is needed most.

Arlene Ducao is a Brooklynite and graduate of the MIT Media Lab. This summer, she and her colleague Ilias Koen are testing out a fleet of bike helmets enabled with brainwave reading technology on the streets the New York. The helmets, called MindRiders, will both signal the level of a cyclist’s stress, with colored lights, and also keep a log of that stress, to load it into geolocated maps.

Crowdsourcing that data (from the users that allow it), will enable MindRider to make a map of how stressful it is to ride in New York (and elsewhere, as the technology becomes more broadly available), according to BostonInno:

Knowing where you get stressed and others get stressed isn’t just helpful personally, however. The feature can also aid municipal government organizations looking to more effectively plan out bike lanes in their city. All data is customized to a user’s privacy settings, yet MindRider encourages cyclists to “add to street maps that show [their] community’s experience” and “share them with friends, other cyclists, even transportation planners.”

“When we added a GPS and data logging functionality to the helmet, that turned the helmet much more into a civic project,” Ducao added. “One area of interest is bikeshare. Where should bikeshare places be? We can plan out bike lanes.”



Companies: MIT
Series: Brooklyn

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