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Business Informatics (VLBA) student team presents results on European open bicycle data

The Oldenburg University (Business Informatics – VLBA) student project group Bicycle Data recently presented its final results on the analysis of European cycling data to the interested public. The almost two and a half hour digital event was embedded in a BITS Academy, which took place as part of the EU-funded project BITS – Bicycles and Intelligent Transport Systems. Almost 200 participants from all over Europe had the opportunity to learn more about the potential of the preprocessed cycling data sets as well as to contribute interactively and give feedback to the project. For a duration of one a year, the students worked intensively with bicycle data of the research projects BITS and SmartHelm, the latter which is funded by the mFUND program of the German Ministry of Transport and Digital Infrastructure (BMVI). The results of the developed project website www.bicycle-data.de were presented in detail.

In their introduction, Kevin Mayne (Cycling Industries Europe) and Johannes Schering (VLBA, standing in for Prof. Dr.-Ing. Jorge Marx Gómez, head of the department) pointed out very clearly the potential of cycling in Corona times and the relevance of the availability of relating bicycle data for cities and regions. The SmartHelm part of the presentation presented first results of the Cognitive Systems Lab of the University of Bremen as part of a current running augmented reality study that is partly conducted during cycling. Urban Plangger of project partner of UVEX SPORTS presented live a first prototype of the attention-sensitive smart helmet, which is supposed to support bicycle couriers during their working process by an EEG measurement, EyeTracking and digital glasses (AR display of the Microsoft Hololens2). The students themselves dealt intensively with the EEG data collected by the helmet. Using various machine learning approaches, it was investigated whether distractions can be identified and types of distractions can be determined on the basis of initial laboratory study data provided by the University of Bremen. For this purpose, various artificial neuronal networks were trained, as presented by Thilo von Glan, Marwin Kröger and Marvin Büchel of the project group.

Urban Plangger (UVEX) presents the first prototype of the smart bicycle helmet (Youtube).

For further development of the website and the related improvement of the user orientation, the feedback of potential future users, especially from municipalities, traffic planners or software developers, is very desirable. Therefore, the final presentation did not just consist of PowerPoint presentations; the participants were also able to actively contribute their ideas. In this context, the audience was asked in a poll 1.) which information should ideally be visualized on the AR display of the helmet’s glasses, 2.) which potential data sources could be used for the visualization and 3.) in which other application scenarios besides city logistics the intelligent helmet could potentially be used. The feedback was obtained based on an interactive Miro board which allows the participants to contribute their specific ideas. From the participants point of view the focus was particularly on traffic safety: For example, accident or critical points in the infrastructure, the distances when taking over by motorized traffic, information on the condition of the road or the stress level of the rider could be displayed. Navigation suggestions, weather information or points of interest for recreational cyclists could also be displayed. For bicycle commuters, information on train stations or bicycle parking facilities could be made available, while citizens could be given the opportunity to report dangerous road spots or problems in the infrastructure.

The second big part of the presentation focused on the processing, harmonization and publication of European cycling data on the Bicycle Data website as part of the BITS project. Anselm Fehnker, Franziska Ernst and Dennis Schulte discussed the challenges of data harmonization. The work of the student team showed very clearly that bicycle data is collected and published in many different ways differing country by country and city by city (e.g. by bicycle counting stations or apps). The missing common understanding of how to collect cycling data makes it very difficult to compare different cities. In order to be able to find correlations between different data sets, an extensive data preprocessing was necessary. The Bicycle Data website also provides new Key Performance Indicators (KPIs), graphs and visualizations on bicycle use (e.g. apps, sensors, bicycle parking) or road safety (near accidents) in Europe. To enable all interested parties to use the processed data sets for further purposes as traffic planning or software applications, these can be downloaded as open data on the website. The functions of the Bicycle Data website were presented in detail as part of a live demonstration by Jan Stüven, Simon Czapski, Tugba Dalmaz and René Rohde. The KPIs and the other functions of the website need to be evaluated by practitioners and adjusted accordingly to their demands. Accordingly, the topics of bicycle counting, tracking / sensor data, traffic safety (near accidents) and the technical background in the development of the website were discussed intensively in four break-out sessions. Various potentials for further technical developments and improvements were identified with the participants.

As part of the interactive break-out sessions the results of the data team, here the bicycle counting data, were discussed with external stakeholders (Zoom).

A central goal of the BITS project is to make European bicycle data available. For this purpose, the BITS project as a whole is working on an European open data portal with special focus on cycling data, the so called CyclingDataHub (CDH). The BITS Academy was therefore rounded off with a live demonstration of the Hub which is based on ArcGis by Kim Verbeeck from the Province of Antwerp (Belgium). Similar to the mCLOUD of the BMVI, external cycling data sets of other external websites can be linked to the CDH. Interested stakeholders from municipalities, transport planning, business, research or other interested parts of the society will be enabled to publish their cycling data as open data sets. A corresponding call for data provision was recently published on the official cycling portal of the BMVI in Germany, which you can find here.

The Bicycle Data project group is very pleased about the huge interest in their successful work on European bicycle data. The project team consists of eleven masters students from the academic field of (Business) Informatics. The huge data base which was built up as part of the project provides a strong fundament for further data-based work in the research projects BITS and SmartHelm. The recording of the digital BITS Academy can be watched at Youtube. The project team gives thanks to all external participants and stakeholders, the project partners for their active contributions and Cycling Industries Europe (CIE) for organizing and hosting the event.

As part of the official launch of the CyclingDataHub (CDH) all interested stakeholders are invited to publish their existing bicycle data sets as open data (Province of Antwerp).
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Recording of the BITS Academy available on YouTube

You can find the recording of the Academy here.

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Invitation final presentation 09.04.2021

Dear Ladies and Gentlemen,

we would like to invite you (and your colleagues) to our final presentation of the Bicycle Data student project group. As part of the meeting we would like to present our results in the field of bicycle data. This will mainly include a live demo of our website with functionalities for analysis, visualization, comparing and downloading bicycle data.

Our project group is working as part of the research project BITS (Bicycles and Intelligent Transport Systems) on the analysis of various types of European bicycle data, including bicycle count data, environmental data, tracking data, near accidents and bicycle parking. As part of the SmartHelm project we work with awareness sensitive data (e.g. EEG and EyeTracking data) of a smart bicycle helmet for bike couriers.

The presentation is part of a BITS Academy event. You find the agenda under the following link:  https://northsearegion.eu/bits/events/bits-academy-on-cycling-data/

Date: Friday, 9th of April, 2 pm to 4.30 pm.
We would be happy to hear from you as whether you are going to attend to the event.
You can register here.

Please forward the invitation to colleagues or other interested parties.

We would be very pleased about your participation.

Best regards
Bicycle Data Project Group

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04.03.2021: VLBA students present Bicycle Data Dashboard to European partners

As part of the Interreg project BITS (Bicycles and Intelligent Transport Systems), the sixth internal project meeting (Steering Group Meeting) took place at the beginning of March. The student project group Bicycle Data presented their recently developed Bicycle Data Dashboard to the public for the first time. As part of a live demo, René Rohde, Simon Czapski and Jan Stüven showed the various potential applications of cycling data. The newly developed dashboard consists of the three core components visualization, Key Performance Indicators (KPIs) and the option to download the raw data from a wide variety of SmartCycling implementations. Data sets of bicycle counting stations, bicycle sensors, apps, near-accidents and bicycle parking from the Netherlands, Belgium, the UK and Germany are available. In addition to the visualizations, the European partners took a very interested look to the KPIs as part of the live demonstration: These enable e.g. a better comparison of the amount of cyclists in different European countries and regions. The KPIs will be evaluated in the forthcoming months by the participating European municipalities. The rich cycling data base that the student team has built up and processed in one year time could also be part of the CyclingDataHub, the open portal for bicycle traffic data, which is being developed by the province of Antwerp in the BITS project, in the nearer future. The student project group Bicycle Data is pleased about the positive feedback by external partners. Further details will be presented on the 9th of April, from 2 p.m., as part of the online-based final presentation. In addition to the knowledge gathered from the BITS project, the students will also present their work in the SmartHelm project and the related attention-relevant EEG and EyeTracking data of the helmet. If you are interested to participate in the final presentation please contact Johannes Schering (johannes.schering@uni-oldenburg.de).

As part of the Live Demonstration the VLBA students presented various visualizations of European cycling data at the BITS meeting.
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Second interim presentation

On 04.12.2020 the project group invited the project partners and other interested parties to its second interim presentation. The results already achieved were presented, as well as an overview of the goals the group wants to achieve by the end of the project group in March 2021.

Last but not least, the event was also very informative for the group, as the questions asked in the subsequent discussion helped to optimally implement the final requirements and to improve existing concepts and put the finishing touches on them.

All in all, the second interim presentation was a good start to the final phase of the project. The PG Bicycle Data would like to thank the numerous project partners during the project for the lively exchange during the interim presentation and in general. We will do our best to implement as much of this as possible in the coming months.

You can download the slides of the presentation here: Second interim presentation

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Invitation interim presentation 04.12.2020

Dear Sir or Madam,

we would like to invite you to our second interim presentation of the student project group Bicycle Data. As part of the online meeting we would like to present our preliminary results and give you an insight into our future topics.

As part of the research project BITS (Bicycles and Intelligent Transport Systems) the project team is working on the analysis of various bicycle data sets, including counting data, environmental data, near-accidents at intersections or bicycle parking. As part of the SmartHelm project we work with awareness sensitive data (e.g. EEG data) of a smart bicycle helmet.

The presentation will take place on the 4th of December at 2 p.m. in Microsoft Teams. You don’t need an account to attend this meeting. If you are interested, write to us at pg@bicycle-data.de and we will send you the access data.

Kind regards
Bicycle Data project group

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Meeting with the partners

16./17.11.2020: Smarthelm partners discuss current development status

The partners involved in the interdisciplinary Smarthelm research project have now met for a two-day digital project meeting. Important topics of discussion were the implementation of upcoming studies for further testing of the helmet under corona conditions. Helmet manufacturer UVEX presented the latest version of the Smarthelm (including a visor for better sun protection), while Ubimax gave insights into the possibilities of overlays for the driver on the smart glasses (see screenshot). The city of Oldenburg presented ideas to bring the project closer to the general public via digital means as well. Harish Moturu from the VLBA department presented the current development status of the data management platform for analyzing load factors of helmet wearers. The Bicycle Data project group was also present and reported, among other things, on their analysis of EEG data and the Bicycle Data Dashboard for open bicycle data, which will be the result of student work.

The next steps in the project were agreed in more detail. A practical study with bicycle couriers from CITIPOST Nordwest in Oldenburg is planned for summer 2021. The Smarthelm project is being funded over a period of three years in the BMVI’s mFUND program. The aim is to develop an intelligent bicycle helmet, including attention measurement and augmented reality glasses, to make everyday work easier for bicycle couriers. From a research point of view, stress factors of courier drivers are to be identified on the basis of new biophysiological data.


At the digital Smarthelm meeting, project partner Ubimax showed ways in which overlays could be made in the driver’s field of view on AR glasses. Source: Microsoft Teams.

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Meeting with the partners

Meeting with the BITS partners

On September 29 and 30, two students of our project group participated in a project meeting with international partners of the BITS project. Each project partner presented the status of their current research, explained what obstacles have arisen since the Corona pandemic and how the project will proceed. The interim results of our project group Bicycle Data were presented by our project supervisor Johannes Schering. He reported on the current status of the data processing with count, environmental, bicycle parking and near miss data and on the further procedure of the project group. In addition, some open questions were clarified, including how we should publish data.

All in all, the BITS project meeting was very informative for everyone involved. Now everyone knows where the overall BITS project is headed and what needs to be done in the individual subprojects accordingly.

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28.08.2020: First interim presentation

On 28.08.20 the project group invited the project partners and other interested parties to their first interim presentation. The results already achieved were presented, as well as an overview of which goals the group still wants to achieve in the coming months.
Last but not least, the event was very informative for the group, as the questions asked in the subsequent discussion helped to better understand and implement the requirements and goals on the part of the project partners.
All in all, the first interim presentation was a good start to get everyone involved on the same page and the group is looking forward to further collaboration.