History and Evolution
– The word ‘bicycle’ first appeared in English print in The Daily News in 1868.
– It was first used in 1847 in a French publication to describe an unidentified two-wheeled vehicle.
– The dandy horse, invented by Baron Karl von Drais, was the first human means of transport to use only two wheels in tandem.
– Kirkpatrick MacMillan, a Scottish blacksmith, may have built the first mechanically propelled two-wheeled vehicle in 1839.
– Pierre Michaux and Pierre Lallement added a mechanical crank drive with pedals to the bicycle design in the early 1860s.
– The French velocipede developed into the penny-farthing, featuring a tubular steel frame and wire-spoked wheels.
– The chain drive was introduced by J.K. Starley, J.H. Lawson, and Shergold, leading to the development of safety bicycles.
– The basic shape and configuration of a typical upright bicycle have changed little since the first chain-driven model was developed around 1885.
– Modern materials and computer-aided design have allowed for improvements in bicycle details.
– Innovations such as the seat tube and diamond frame have increased comfort and efficiency.
– The introduction of pneumatic tires, coaster brakes, and derailleurs have further improved bicycle technology.

Popularity and Uses
– The Chinese Flying Pigeon is the most popular bicycle model and the most popular vehicle in the world, with about 500 million produced.
– Bicycles outnumber cars in terms of total numbers and individual models produced.
– Bicycles are the principal means of transportation in many regions.
– Bicycles are widely used for recreation, fitness, military and police applications, courier services, racing, and stunts.
– Electric bicycles have become popular in the 21st century.
– Transportation for commuting and utility purposes
– Professional use by mail carriers, paramedics, police, messengers, and delivery services
– Military uses for communication, reconnaissance, troop movement, supply, and patrol
– Recreational purposes such as touring, mountain biking, fitness, and play
– Sports including racing, BMX, track racing, criterium, roller racing, sportives, and time trials

Impact on Society and Innovations
– The bicycle has had a significant impact on society, both culturally and industrially.
– Components initially invented for bicycles, such as ball bearings and pneumatic tires, played a key role in the development of automobiles.
– The bicycle contributed to the advancement of modern industrial methods.
– The invention of the bicycle led to the development of specialized designs for various types of cycling.
– Bicycles have been adapted for multiple purposes, including children’s toys and general fitness.
– The 21st century has seen the rise of electric bicycles.
– Continual adaptation and improvement since its inception
– Innovations in materials and computer-aided design
– Proliferation of specialized bicycle types
– Improved safety and riding comfort
– Firefighter bicycles

Technical Aspects and Performance
– Most efficient human-powered means of transportation in terms of energy expenditure
– Up to 99% of rider’s energy delivered to the wheels
– Gearing mechanisms may reduce energy transmission by 10-15%
– Efficient means of cargo transportation in terms of cargo weight to total weight ratio
– Reduction of drag through aerodynamic positioning and fairings
– Materials used in bicycles (alloy steels, aluminum, carbon fiber, titanium, advanced alloys, bamboo)
– Drivetrain and gearing (pedals, chain, dérailleur system, hub gears)
– Bicycle transmissions (hydraulic, synchronous belts)
– Gears and gear ranges

Types and Dynamics
– Utility bicycles, mountain bicycles, racing bicycles, touring bicycles, hybrid bicycles, cruiser bicycles, and BMX bikes
– Less common types include tandems, low riders, tall bikes, fixed gear, folding models, amphibious bicycles, cargo bikes, recumbents, and electric bicycles
– Unicycles, tricycles, and quadracycles are also referred to informally as bikes or cycles
– Bicycles stay upright by steering to keep the center of mass over the wheels
– Lean into turns through countersteering
– Short-wheelbase or tall bicycles can perform tricks like stoppies or front wheelies
– Understanding bicycle and motorcycle dynamicsSources: