Slow Race - Gyro Judge

My idea was to use the gyroscope, built-in to smartphones, to monitor wheel movement and to alarm, if the wheel actually stopped. I experimented a little bit and found out that those built-in gyroscopes are very accurate and can determine movement way better than the human eye.

What does this technology provide?

  • consistant measurement - no dependence on human failure

  • sensor can be found in most of todays smartphones - can be “downloaded”

  • riders can practice autonomous

Does it work? Yes, here is some footage:
Unicycle Slow Race - Gyro Judge


Questions from Petra Plininger(translated from german):

Can i download this software? How much does it cost?

The application you can see in the video is a normal android app, which runs on any android device with a gyroscope and android 4(and higher). I built this app for testing purposes only, but after my exam period I will continue with the development and provide it for free on the Google Play Store.

Can I start the run from a different device or with a light barrier?

It’s possible yes, but you don’t need it. The app recognizes if the wheel is moving and starts the run. If the wheel stops it stops the timer. If the wheel moves again, it starts a new run.

I will add an feature to be able to record runs longer than a specified duration und export them to csv-files, which can be used to analyze your run on any other device, computer, etc.

A light barrier is not needed and unnecessary.

How about the 45°?

The sensors provide enough data to determine the wheels horizontal orientation, but this requires higher mathematics and exceeds the scope of an alpha test. It’s possible though!

Can I connect a second device to monitor the runs?

Yes you could, but putting a smartphone into the wheel is no long-term solution. I am thinking about a little sensor tag connected to a smartphone or tablet via Bluetooth. This tag has a gyroscope built-in and transfers the wheel information to the phone or tablet.

Like this little thing:

The hornet version provides all sensors I need and it only costs 40$. I don’t know if the built-in motion sensors are precise enough, but it gives a good impression on how small the sensor tags can be.

Brilliant idea! You’ve caught the attention of the IUF rules committee so stay tuned, we’ve been working hard on reworking the slow-race rules. I love the idea of using an app to be more accurate, if the logistics can be worked out.