Interesting bikes at Taipei Cycle 2010

The 2010 Taipei International Cycle Show opened yesterday at the TWTC Nangang Exhibition Centre. I visited the show today. This year Taipei Cycle has a record number of exhibitors and it seemed like every available space in the exhibition centre was being used.

As usual the big brand names like Giant, Merida, Dahon and Shimano occupied the prime positions in the middle of the main exhibition hall. Apart from the big names there is a huge array of bicycles and accessories on display. It is always interesting to discover some new and innovative products and designs. Continue reading

Books and e-readers at the Taipei Book Exhibition

The Taipei International Book Exhibition opened yesterday. I visited the exhibition today at the Taipei World Trade Centre to see what was new this year. This year’s special guest exhibitor is France. Francophones will be sure to enjoy the large range of French literature on display. There is also a selection of French films screening every day.

One of the new things on display this year is e-readers. I was curious to have a look at them and get some idea of how they look and operate. The one pictured above is the BenQ nReader K60 which was on sale for NT$8,990. It is operated via buttons and also a touchscreen. Books can be downloaded via wi-fi. Several other e-readers were on display including Greenbook, the Amazon Kindle and iRex. Continue reading

Bamboo bikes and recumbent trikes at Taipei Cycle

Giant bicycles stand at Taipei Cycle

Taipei Cycle 2009 is now on at the Nangang Exhibition Centre. In the middle of the exhibition hall on the fourth floor were all the big names in cycling: Giant, Merida, Dahon, Campagnolo, Shimano and SRAM. Elsewhere there were all sorts of bicycles, accessories and activities. I visited the show yesterday and my report and photos follow. Continue reading

Observations at Computex

This is a guest post from Glen Clifford, a freelance journalist based in Taipei. His website is

Well Computex is over for yet another year and I have to tell you, this year the show was even bigger (4,492 booths!) even better, even brighter and – well – not so noisy.  Yes, we had the usual on-stage promotions presented by very young sexy girls, dressed in tightly wrapped brightly coloured plastic… But apart from hearing their produced fake doll-like voices, we didn’t see a lot of dancing and gyrating to loud pop music, as seen in years past.  Damn! – Maybe only the agents and distributors got to see them sway on stage, as Computex is locked down from the general public for its first few days.

However, I suspect that something else may be going on… It was conspicuously quiet at the booths as well… There was no loud Kenny-G playing to display some company’s speaker system (Kenny-G is favourite test music for many Taiwanese computer nerds) and no loud sound-effects of exploding villages and people dying from the video game or LCD monitor manufacturers…  It was all kept down to an amazingly low decibel…  Maybe the organizers have decided to try to create a more relaxed atmosphere, but the effect was that the experience became a little too much like walking through a very long mortuary. Continue reading

Bikes galore at Taipei Cycle

TWTC Nangang Exhibition Hall, the venue for Taipei Cycle 2008

The Taipei International Cycle Exhibition opened today at the new TWTC Nangang Exhibition Centre. The show is the first event at the new exhibition hall. The new centre is large and spacious and has all the facilities one would expect including various restaurants. I was keen to see some of the new innovations and trends since last year's show and there was no shortage of amazing bikes on display. 

Chang Sheng Kai maker of CSK bikes at Taipei Cycle 2008

Chang Sheng Kai (張勝凱) is the maker of CSK bikes. All bikes are hand-built for elite cyclists. Mr Chang was a champion cyclist when he was younger. Now he just builds the bikes of champions! 

Streetsurfer bicycle designed for ice riding

At last year's show I saw the innovative StreetSurfer bike designed in Australia. The company had a display again this year. I couldn't quite figure out why the bike would have aluminium wheels. It was then explained to me that it was a bike designed for ice riding. The rear tire is rubber with studs. The Scandinavian market is eagerly awaiting this model!

StreetSurfer bikes incorporate Riasorb suspension technology. It uses a special polymer to maximise performance of the suspension system. Although it is currently being used in bikes it has potential applications in the automative, aviation and other industries.  

Sliding bike, an interesting variation on the folding bike, at Taipei Cycle 2008

Folding bikes seem to be very popular in Taiwan now. It is interesting to see the many variations in the folding design. The one pictured above is a sliding bike.

SwissBike - full size folding mountain bike

The SwissBike (photo supplied by manufacturer) is a full size mountain bike with a unique folding mechanism. The model in the photo is the SwissBike XO which retails for around US$2,000. 

Giant Bikes exhibition at Taipei Cycle 2008

Leading Taiwanese manufacturer Giant had a large stand at the show. Merida's stand was nearby.  

Sanground Taoyuan County bike at Taipei Cycle 2008

The Sanground company had all its different models named after counties in Taiwan. The Taoyuan County is pictured above. 

There is a free shuttle bus service from Kunyang MRT Station to the Nangang Exhibition Centre. Stage seven of the Tour de Taiwan will be held on a street circuit outside the exhibition centre on Saturday morning.  

*more photos in the Taipei Cycle 2008 set at flickr.  

Cycling events in March

2008 Taipei Cycle and Tour de Taiwan posters

March will be an exciting month for anyone interested in bikes and cycling in Taiwan. The Tour de Taiwan runs from 9-16 March. Taipei Cycle 2008 takes place at the TWTC Nangang Exhibition Hall from 13-16 March.  

Racing action in the 2007 Tour de Taiwan in Taipei

The 2008 Tour de Taiwan starts in Kaohsiung on 9 March. The race will cover 832 kilometres in eight stages. The final stage on 16 March will be a criterium around Taipei City Hall. The tour is part of the UCI Asia Tour and 22 teams from 15 countries will compete in the race. Stage by stage the race will go as follows:

  • Stage 1: 9 March (Sun) Kaohsiung City
  • Stage 2: 10 March (Mon) Pingdong County
  • Stage 3: 11 March (Tue) Zhanghua County
  • Stage 4: 12 March (Wed) Taizhong City
  • Stage 5: 13 March (Thu) Xinzhu City
  • Stage 6: 14 March (Fri) Taipei County
  • Stage 7: 15 March (Sat) Taipei City (Nangang)
  • Stage 8: 16 March (Sun) Taipei City (Taipei City Hall)

Descriptions of the stages (in Chinese) are available on the Tour de Taiwan website. The stages in Kaohsiung, Pingdong, Taizhong, Xinzhu, Nangang and Taipei will all be held on street circuits allowing spectators to get close to the action. Stage 6 in Taipei County will start and finish at the Taipei County Government building in Banqiao. Riders will race over an out and back circuit to Cape Bitou via Danshui. 

bike on display at Taipei Cycle 2007

Taipei Cycle 2008 will be held at the TWTC Nangang Exhibition Centre from 13-16 March. The event marks the opening of the new exhibition centre which has 1.7 times more floor space than the Taipei World Trade Centre. Unfortunately the MRT lines that will connect to the Nangang Exhibition Centre are not yet complete. The best way to get there will be to travel on the MRT to Kunyang Station and take a bus or taxi from there. The bike show is also being held in conjuction with the Taiwan International Sporting Goods Show (TaiSPO). TaiSPO will be held at the TWTC in the Xinyi District of Taipei.  

Bike Smiling - Taipei, image created with Ript

And finally, if you prefer riding bikes rather than just looking at them, don't forget Bike Smiling (微笑單車上路).  It's on Sunday 30 March at 3:00pm in Taipei. Meet at the main gate of NTU (on the corner of Roosevelt and Xinsheng Roads). 

2008 Taipei Book Fair

Show me Australia Photography Competition at the 2008 Taipei Book Fair

The Taipei International Book Exhibition (TIBE) is now on at the Taipei World Trade Centre. The theme of last year's exhibition was Russia and this year it is Australia. The exhibition is a major event for Asian publishers and there is a huge range of books on display. 

Tony and Maureen Wheeler of Lonely Planet fame being interviewed at the 2008 Taipei Book Fair

I was keen to see Tony Wheeler and lo and behold minutes after entering the hall I saw him being interviewed along with his wife Maureen at the Australian Pavillion. Other Australian authors attending the event include Markus Zusak, author of The Book Thief, and illustrator Shaun Tan.

Chinese-language editions of Lonely Planet books at the 2008 Taipei Book Fair

Lonely Planet now publishes Chinese-language editions of some of its guidebooks. I am sure Tony and Maureen Wheeler's visit to Taiwan will help raise the company's profile here.  

Shieh Jhy-wey the Taiwan GIO Minister in the Textbox at the Taipei Book Fair

Shieh Jhy-wey (謝志偉) is pictured above in the Textbox. He is doing a rap in Hoklo Taiwanese (when he is not rapping he serves as the Minister for the GIO). This innovation (the Textbox not Shieh's rapping) was bought to Taipei from the Frankfurt Book Fair. It allows readers to get up close to an author. The author is in a glass box while the audience listens in via headphones. 

One book for NT$100 at the 2008 Taipei Book Fair

I only bought one book at the exhibition and it was a great bargain. It is at the bottom left-hand corner of the photo above. It is called 省錢環島遊 or Money Saving Guide Around Taiwan and cost just NT$100. It recommends lots of free and cheap things to do around Taiwan with maps and descriptions.  

Cute cosplay girl at 2008 Taipei Book Fair

Hall 2 of the TWTC is dedicated to anime and manga (comics or graphic novels). It was very lively with plenty of people buying up the latest manga. Hall 3 is for children's books. There is plenty to see and do there. 

The exhibition continues at the Taipei World Trade Centre until Monday 18 February. More information is available at the Taipei International Book Exhibition website.  

*more photos in the 2008 Taipei Book Fair photoset at flickr.