Why Not?

Wednesday May 26, 2010

More stuff that works

A mixed bag, one for motorcyclists, one for people who like to listen to music.

For audiophiles, particularly those who commit a relatively small amount of money to their love of music, get yourselves online and buy some Quadraspire isolation supports. Funny shape bits of plastic that sit under your audio kit and stop vibration; impressive how much effect such little things have on output quality. For those who spend a little more, the same company's Sunoko Vent hifi racks performed remarkably well in a demo; I went in with considerable cynicism, but came out a believer. Just moving the CD player source from an old rack to Quadraspire's entry product and then to the Sunoko produced appreciable step changes in audio clarity and tone. Moving the player back to the normal table and back again clinched it - absolutely, definitely and even to non-educated ears, the audio quality improves on the Sunoko Vent rack. One to look listen out for.

And for motorcyclists, so many of whom will have heard the first part of this one before: the vanishing point; watching it obsessively really, really works... The vanishing point is that point at the which the two edges of a road appear to come together as you approach a bend. If the vanishing point recedes away from you as you approach, the bend is relatively shallow; if it doesn't move at all the bend is sharp and slowing down is probably advisable. This is something I have known for a long time, and used more or less my whole motorcycling career (not always effectively...); but I picked up an extension to this information in a motorcycling periodical. I read it, thought about it and went out to try with much success, so I thought I'd pass it on. :)

If you keep watching the vanishing point as you go around the bend, not just on the approach, it has several additional benefits:

(i) vehicles of all types have a tendency to go where the person in control is looking, so watching the vanishing point helps prevent those embarrassing verge/kerb encounters, and for me it seems to result in a better, smoother line through the bend;

(ii) you see and understand what is around the bend sooner;

(iii) you are in a far better position to understand what the bend is going to do, allowing you to continually reapply the basic rule described above, namely if the vanishing point starts to recede you can accelerate. Or brake if it seems to get closer...

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