Cheating, cheating virtual buddies!

Nice piece of coding they, Garmin, have in that there bike computer, Edge 705!

I have the setting on the Edge that the timer stops when I stop and it starts again when I start.  I know that for the brevets I will have to take that option off and keep the timer running constantly.  However, I would have expected that the virtual buddy would have the same setting.  But no, it doesn’t stop at red lights, it doesn’t stop at stop signs and it doesn’t miss turnings!

Yes, I missed a turning.  The climb up from Port Jefferson, the steepest ascent on the course, has a red light near the summit.  I rarely look up and just concentrate and climbing.  The light was on green as I approached so I didn’t lose any momentum.  I cycled through the junction and then next thing I know, the computer emitted a beep beep.  I looked down, “Off course”.  I looked at the map, I should have turned left!  I had forgotten, or hadn’t made the connection when devising the course, that the left turn on that road was also on the hill.  Doh!  I did a u-turn, went back down 100m or so and made a right turn.  Of course, the virtual buddy hadn’t missed the turn, I bet!

The road was new territory for me.  I hadn’t even drove down there and was totally dependent upon the Edge in making sure I kept on course.  I couldn’t remember the distance I was to go outwards but knew that the total mileage was 50km and that the return leg was shorter than the out.  As soon as I made a right turn I knew I was heading home and the road home is a fast 55mph zone, not that I am going 55mph!  The Edge kept the course well and having the split screen with map and three riding stats (distance, speed and time taken) is perfectly adequate.

My objective was 25km/h so it wasn’t that difficult to work out how I was doing.  Just after the hill from Port Jefferson, I was down on the average so pushed a bit to get back on track.  Once I hit 347, I was quicker than objective and able to push on more, I was confident of beating the virtual buddy.  Little did I know about the quirky algorithm.  The last couple of miles is going through residential area with stop signs so I knew I was unable to make any gain there, may even have lost a bit.  So it was with great surprise that I then heard the virtual buddy victory chime when I still had 1km to go!

Despite that, it was a great ride.  It was nearly 51km and I took just over 2 hours.  I wanted to beat the 2 hour mark but failed by 20 seconds.  Next week I shall do the same course and beat the 2 hour limit.


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2 Responses to “Cheating, cheating virtual buddies!”

  1. wb416 Says:

    Are you still using the Edge 705? Would it be a worthwhile purchase for me, or should I consider a different option?


  2. Paul Murray Says:


    Yes, I am still using it. Every time I go for a ride I have it on. It is great for creating a route and following it through the map. It all depends on what you are looking for in a computer. If you need the GPS side of things, then I would recommend it. If you don’t need that, then there are cheaper computers out there. Battery lasts about 12 hours which is fine for most people. As I have an onboard charger, that is not an issue. I use it both during the day and night and everything is easily read.


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