April 29, 2008

OKAY, THIS GADGET LOOKS PRETTY COOL: But wouldn’t it be a distraction, on a motorcycle?

UPDATE: Most readers say no: “Lots of riders are using GPS these days. It’s a wonderful tool when exploring, and a lot easier to use on the fly than a paper map. It’ll also show you where to find gas’food, and how to get back where you came from if you’ve just picked roads at random.”

“BMW is a big fan, offering these as an accessory to their M/Cs. And as a former M/C rider, I can assure you having a Garmin read directions into your ear would be a lot less distracting than checking a paper map on your tank bag as you drive down a country lane…” You could come to a stop, you know.

“Personally, I use the Garmin StreetPilot 2610, but do not use the audio inputs to my helmet. I find the visual cues to be sufficient. I ride without the use the audio inputs which I find distracting. Still others have employed elaborate communication systems wherein they normally listen to either an iPod/MP3/Satellite radio but the navigation system has priority for ‘turn-by-turn-navigation.’ For the people that I ride with, the emplyment of the Garmin/music mix doesn’t seem to be any more distracting to them while they’re on a motorcycle than it is when they’re in their cars, and none of them impress me as bad vehicle drivers. I think it really comes down to an individual case. Some of my friends seem not to be distracted by the additional input, I can’t handle the ‘distraction’.”