After raising over $50,000 in a successful Kickstarter campaign last month, the folks behind the Bike Index are wrapping up a five-city West Coast tour tonight in Portland. To celebrate the launch of their new national bike registry, they’re hosting a party tonight at The Lumberyard Indoor Bike Park (2700 NE 82nd Ave).
If you haven’t heard about the Bike Index, it’s humbly described as “an open source bike registry to fight bike theft and save the world.” The site is based in Chicago and its goal is to get more people to register their bikes before they’re stolen. Since the existing National Bike Registry charges a fee and uses outdated technology, few people actually use it. To encourage more widespread registration, the Bike Index crew has made their tool open-source, free to use and mobile-friendly. They also partner up with bike shops and other bike organizations to get bikes registered at the point of sale.
Here’s their promo vid:
As urban cycling booms in cities across America, bike theft is becoming a more prominent issue and entrepreneurs, software developers, and high-tech engineers see a golden opportunity. It seems like every week there’s another new device on Kickstarter that promises to end bike theft as we know it.
While the Bike Index gets off the ground, another similar effort is being hatched by a Portland-based company called Project 529. Backed by industry juggernaut and component maker SRAM, Project 529 has been relatively mysterious until now. The two founders of the company have backgrounds at Microsoft and XBox and now they’ve devoted their resources to a bike registry system. This new registry is yet to be named and it won’t launch for a few more months, but from what we’ve learned it looks to be very similar to Bike Index.
If you want to learn more about the Bike Index and get your bike registered into the system, stop by The Lumberyard tonight starting at 6:00 pm. Just mention the Bike Index when you arrive and you’ll get a free drink ticket and discounted ($19.95) access to The Lumberyard if you’d like to do a bit of shredding.
Here’s the event flyer for good measure (and the Facebook event page if you’re so inclined):