Tag Archives: world rickshaw taxi

Recent Updates

Repaired Chain = Back to Training:

It took 4 days to arrive, but I eventually got my power link (see guide) and could fit it as such  I gave my chain a ‘degunge’ and fresh oil and was ready to hit some turbo training that evening. So I did with good intentions, but after an hour in I was disappointed to find my mp3 choked and died on me half way through. I would have thought it would be the other way round machine beats man. In the end I had to give up, I lacked the mental strength to concentrate with the flurry of bangs being positioned above some open squash courts.

Fortunately the next two days I put in some excellent sessions and leading after Tuesday’s circuit training, I was pretty knackered at the end and slept a very good night despite only having 7 hours sleep.

  • Tuesday: Circuit Training
  • Thursday: Circuit Training
  • Saturday: Turbo Trainer (1hr)
  • Sunday: Turbo Trainer (1hr 1/2)
  • Monday: Turbo Trainer (2hr)
  • Tuesday: Circuit Training

I am hoping that soon I can record a video of my training efforts to really show how determined I am achieving this.

Website Improvements:

The website serves as the backbone for my adventure and  For the few dedicated followers that I have already, I managed to improve the homepage of my website so that it is much more informative in real time from many sources (Twitter, Twitpic, Blog).

Screenshot showcasing improvements to World Rickshaw Taxi Frontpage

Also shown is the modified trailer for my world rickshaw taxi, which was entered part of the Kukri Scholarship competition. Having direct control over website gives me great flexibility to tweak this as I want and how I want and will become more interactive when my adventure begins.

Twitter: To tweet or not tweet that’s good question

It does open up many avenues for engaging with people, but at the same time is time consuming. However, I am now on twitter under a new alias (@worldrickshaw) and steadily building up some dedicated followers who probably do think I am on the eccentric side.

I am currently contemplating whether I will use this on the trip to communicate updates whilst on the expedition to followers – it seems a sensible and realistic idea which I’ve done in the past. However, I currently have the problem where some countries like Iran, China it is banned. I am sure there are work around or I will consider some other ideas. .

Get Punkt:

Recently I’ve been contacted by Lydia from Luxson, who shared me their quite novel method of sharing updates using your mobile phone whilst roaming on expeditions called Punkt

Luxson Punkt - Method for sharing expeditions It seems a very practical method of sharing the adventure on the go especially with richer social media. My only hesitation is integrating this seamlessly into my website. However, that may be addressable and will need a bit of time to think this over.

The Big Training Ride:

I will be heading home on Friday , but rather than taking a train I will be cycling home. I will post more about this in a successive post sometime soon.

 

 

Meeting Old and New Acquaintances

One of my main aims with World Rickshaw Taxi is to promote understanding and awareness about our changing world by presenting my journey around the world through this blog and of course on the website by the fabulous medium of the internet and mobile technology.

Pursuing a degree in  Mechanical Engineering hasn’t left my passion in this subject area to fade; consequently I have taken to travelling and discovering the world and its people for myself. At secondary school, I was passionate about geography and understanding the social and cultural relationship between people and geography. I somehow managed to be the top five students in my GCSE Exams for the country. Perhaps it was the very lengthy coursework that studied housing in Beverley, or most likely it were the great and enthusiastic teachers at Howden School.

It means a great deal to give the opportunity for young students to get involved and what a better way of doing this is getting my former secondary school involved – Howden Senior School, East Yorkshire. Given especially young students are more receptive to understanding about our World it seems a good fit for participating with the school. My intention is to share with them a more ‘raw’, real perspective of the geography I travel through but also the people I meet.

It had been over 5 years since I last stepped through the front doors of the school. Such a long time ago I didn’t know what to expect. Thankfully it’s great to see so many of the teachers I remember being there and having an opportunity to reminisce the old days.

After I arriving, I met with Andrew Mason who leads the Geography Department and we had a good discussion on the route and we though up some very interesting ideas for getting the students involved and linking this into their lessons. What we wanted to encourage was prompting students to make their own questions to people that I will meet along the way.

I hope to return sometime in the new year and update them on where I currently am.

 

Heading to the University of York:

Later in the week I went to York University to the visit the Environment Department and two academics, to get guidance on my research aims. It was an interesting process, slightly intimidating trying to further explain what I aim to discover. Trying to construct any form of research objective with one specific question is difficult, perhaps unreasonable considering the number of countries travelled through and the open nature of this project. It would also feel very wrong to ask specific questions to each passenger. At this point, it hit a low point.

Looking at research from a different perspective:

One of the academics basis his teaching on Sociology research methods and his particular area of interest is ‘Mobility’ – conducting research in a less formative and qualitative way that implicitly gains data or observations from participants by their own motivation. He further clarified his motivation for his involvement and would be enthusiastic in supporting me if I channelled my energy into this area of study. This area of study is apparently on the cutting edge.

Focusing in this area would give me more flexibility, however it was affirmed that a focus and an expectation to what I wanted to discover during this would be important. Having a ‘theme’ that is interest to me and encouraging the passengers to relate to this intrinsically is what will produce meaningful results to analyse following my world journey.

Further exclaimed that focusing on the theme of technology and placing an inter-disciplinary approach into this would produce something valuable. Technology doesn’t have to be specific:

For example:

One of the passengers may be really proud of a new television set. Whether they say this in English, or perhaps pointing at it or getting them to take a photo it’s implies the importance of this item to them.

Empowering the participant:

By encouraging the passengers to share what they want to share and perhaps encouraging them to do so, it produces a genuine response that can later be analysed and  form comparisons both socially and of course geography. It is an interesting combination of  academic interests.

Jim Goldberg, a photographer looked at the close relationships in families in San Francisco capturing a sample of backgrounds. He instructed the subjects a comment below:

anthro2

antro

This is what I aim to capture on the World Rickshaw Taxi. Not exporting media and presenting my own interpretation to its meaning. It’s presenting what matters to themselves that is important.

Looking from the point of an engineer we can look at the immediate impact of its introduction into an area – in particular through statistics, usage rate and so on. Yet if our demeanour devalues their role in this technology – we can only make guesses of how valuable this technology really is to the community. There is an interesting case study on the introduction of stoves in developing countries to reduce wood consumptions that touches on this issue.

 

Route Itinerary for the World Rickshaw Taxi

Over the past week, I have been spending frivolously most of my time planning the rough route itinerary for the World Rickshaw Taxi to support some grant applications to support funding. However, it was good opportunity to work the finer details of this great logistical challenge of covering such a huge distance, over the time under the strict visa requirement and application process in some countries. It also helped narrow down some countries and areas that I would like to visit, but simply would conflict with Visa requirements. What this boils down to…

16 000 Miles. 1 1/2 Years

The overall journey I anticipate taking over a year and half, mainly based on covering an average 30 miles days of the base route. In fact I will be doing more by taking passengers to their required destinations. It is merely to keep a schedule so I don’t get in trouble – namely fines or perhaps imprisonment in a filthy jail.

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