Little Things that Make a Bike Ride Better

Got a Gadget?

Bicycle designer Georgena Terry describes her favorite gadgets. They don't attach to her bicycle; they are little computer programs that tell her what the weather is before she gets on her bike. Georgena Terry is the president of Terry Precision Cycling.

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ROBERT SIEGEL, host:

This week at this time, we're going to hear about gadgets from people who really know what they're talking about.

We're going to start today with Georgena Terry. She's an engineer by training and she runs a company that designs bicycles specifically for women. She sees a lot bike accessories in her line of work, little computers you attached to your handlebars, gloves for wet weather, special bags to carry the gear on your bike. But her favorite gadget isn't something that she takes with her when she's riding.

something a little bit unique, maybe something that someone else doesn't have or someone else hasn't thought of using it in a certain kind of way.

that you think of. There are actually little software programs called widgets, and these widgets reside on the desktop of your computer. And anything you can think of, somebody's probably written in widget to handle it.

But my favorites are the ones that are about weather. And I think that comes from my background as a cyclist. When you begin bicycling, you go outdoors, you don't think too much about what's going in the environment. But as you ride a little bit more, you realize wow, I feel really good today. When you turn around, you realize you felt good because you had a tailwind the entire way out.

You almost become a meteorologist as a bicyclist. So, my widgets all focus on weather. I have opened on my desktop at any one time usually about four. Two of them will be concerned about weather in two locations. My backyard and usually a second location, which might be, in winter anyway, a place I'm thinking of visiting so I can get away from the winter here and go for a bike ride.

You know, I live in upstate New York and the weather here is not really good for bicycling several months time of the year, to be generous. So, I'm always day dreaming about going someplace where it's a little bit warmer so I can hope on the bike and enjoy fresh air and sunshine for a few days. My location of choice is usually the eastern shore of Maryland, so a little widget resides on my desktop that tells me exactly what the weather in Maryland, and I can click on it and have it expand to tell me what the five day forecast is. And eventually, I kind of put everything together and decide okay, I got to go tomorrow, it's going to be good for two days. Let's hit the road.

You know, I guess when you think about gadgets, you think about something that really has some functionality to it. And for me, a widget does, because I don't use my environment casually. It's not something that just kind of happens when I look outdoors. I'm actively participating in it all time. It is much a part of me as anything else is. So to me, it really is a gadget, I mean, it's helpful as somebody else's iPod, I suppose.

SIEGEL: That's Georgena Terry of Terry Precision Cycling. Tomorrow, we'll hear from the President of the kitchen gadget maker Oxo International. If you have a favorite gadget you'd like to tell us about, we'd love to hear about it. Go to our Web site, NPR.org. We'll broadcast some of your ideas later in the week.

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