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Home Performance

Micro Intervals for TT

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The 2005 racing season is just around the corner, bringing with it new goals, new motivations, and the training plans to match.  I’d be willing to bet that most of those plans come with some kind of interval training.  These lovely little devils are always lurking around, usually guilting us into putting ourselves at their mercy, all in the hopes of being able to go a little bit faster on our bikes.  You just gotta love ‘em!  I usually do…but only after finishing them off and proclaiming that I whupped those devils once again!

Last Updated on Monday, 28 December 2009 00:42

The Rule of the Thumb

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I was recently accused of having too much time on my hands.  This brutally honest feedback was dished out in response to a little study I recently completed which dealt with, ironically, hand position during cycling time trials.  In my defense, I’d just like to say that by using some simple digital image processing techniques, it doesn’t take very long for armchair scientists like me to conduct a “poor man’s” virtual wind tunnel test by measuring frontal area. 

Last Updated on Monday, 28 December 2009 00:55

Wind Tunnel Uncertainty

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Wind Tunnels:  How good are they?
A brief discussion of experimental error

Conducting a rigorous scientifically based experiment isn't as easy as it might seem, since all experiments are subject to errors.  There are two main sources of error in most experiments:

  • Random errors
  • Systematic/Bias errors

It should be the responsibility of the experimentalist to address/comment on these errors in the communication of the results.

Last Updated on Wednesday, 18 November 2015 02:45

Human SuperComputers

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“Landing on Mars is very difficult…”
-   Ed Weiler, NASA

When projects like landing on Mars are taken on by the big-wigs at NASA (National Aeronautics and Space Administration) and the JPL (Jet Propulsion Laboratory) the overall monetary and time investments are mind-boggling.  Hardly an expense is spared in researching and developing a system that is capable of hurling itself off Earth, careening through space and eventually coming to rest on the Red Planet – all in one piece, of course.  If it all works out like the geeks at the computer terminals planned, and with a little luck, the colossal task at hand is made to look very easy… 

Last Updated on Tuesday, 23 February 2010 05:09

Time-Trial Equipment Choice

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An in depth analysis of Chris Horner’s 2002 Redlands Prologue TT victory

words and images by Kraig Willett

(4/10/2005: A note from the author:  The mathematical modeling methods in this article have been dramatically improved in the days since this article first appeared in 2002.  With the better models, the absolute numbers may have changed for this analysis, but the overall message remains the same...)

One of the favorite questions that I like to ask any bicycle company representative I meet is: “Are the performance benefits of the widget you sell, significant?”  It is a great question because the answer one receives tells a lot about the person you are talking to.  If a one sided answer proclaiming that the widget in question is the best thing since sliced bread is received, it can be assumed that the “dark side” of the force (marketing/sales hype) has overtaken this particular person.  However, if a well-balanced answer stating that significance is a difficult subject open to many interpretations and perceptions, it can be assured that the person is firmly grounded in reality.  I would much rather chat with the person who holds the latter opinion of “significance”.

Last Updated on Friday, 25 March 2011 03:28

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