Easy To Read Bicycle Computer

[David Schneider] had trouble seeing his bike computer in the sunlight and wanted a navigation solution that would be both readable and not require a smart phone. In good hacker fashion, [David] married a Raspberry Pi and a Kindle Touch (the kind with the E-ink display). The Kindle provides a large and easy-to-read display.

[David] was worried about violating the DCMA by modifying the Kindle. Turns out, he didn’t have to. He simply used the book reader’s Web browser and set the Pi up as a wireless access point. One clever wrinkle: Apparently, the Kindle tries to phone home to Amazon when it connects to a wireless network. If it can’t find Amazon, it assumes there’s no valid network and treats the network as invalid. To solve this issue, [David] causes the Pi to spoof the Kindle into thinking it gets a valid response from Amazon.

The other work around was to change how the Python application on the Pi updates the screen. [David] found that without that optimization, the constant redrawing on the E-ink display was annoying. The Pi-related hardware includes a GPS, some reed switches, and a WiFi dongle.

We’d love to adapt this idea for our motorcycles. Maybe a project for when it gets too cold to ride.

12 thoughts on “Easy To Read Bicycle Computer

    1. Because I just got a kindle 7th gen (kindle touch 2) for the price of that board. And thats only cause I was picky. These run linux and support a serial port. Its a lot more hardware for the same price. Camouflage it in a soft bag with cutouts, maybe even a seat sensor: Get up and it goes black.

  1. Couldn’t you just put a lens on a regular one if it’s about farsighted people having issues?
    Not that it’s not a nice hack of course, although I don’t think kindles are waterproof though are they?

  2. Brilliant, I am doing the same thing based on arduino. However the lcd I use is not good unde sunlight, so kindle solution looks good. Can you please give more detail about the html generation ?

  3. A Hiking gps device perhaps? But, the battery pack here defeats that application.

    Any ideas for a BLE GPS to send position to Uploaded custom made geospatial PDFs displaying the position in real time as can be done with Avenza PDF maps? Again the phone battery drain defeats that purpose unless turning the device off in between checking.

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