On Strava, or The Things You Love Should Love You Back

19 May

[this is also on medium because even I can’t stand to read through 5000 words on my god-awful looking blog]

Strava, the since-forever social fitness service, announced yesterday that a number of features previously available for free to any user were being transferred instead into the company’s paid offering. The Internet responded as you might expect, everyone seems to have a hot take, but for the most part, I don’t really have a problem with the revised payment model.

In fact I, Cosmo Catalano, long-time Strava user, former developer partner, for years a paying member, erstwhile foaming brand advocate, and even one-time guest speaker, would be stoked as hell to hand Strava my five-dollars-a-month again. All they’d have to do is convince me my money would be put to good use. Instead, they complained that they weren’t profitable.

It’s a bit rich to hear Strava say that in 2020, after spending years and god knows how many dev hours on a merry-go-round of half-baked features that no one wanted and that even fewer people used. To read that, almost overnight, the company’s only desire is “to make a product so good that you’re happy to pay for it” is similarly confounding because — as you’ll read below — this was exactly what Strava once had, and exactly what it spent the tail end of the last decade burning to the ground.

[You can read the rest, for now, on Medium]


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The Recon Ride Podcast – Il Lombardia 2019

10 Oct

Last and most-tourism friendly of the Monuments, this year’s Il Lombardia cues up a fantastic one-day battle between the two most-recent Grand Tour winners, with a host of others ready to deliver a late-season surprise.

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Photo by Navin75 (CC-BY-SA).

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How The Race Was Won™ – UCI World Championships 2019, Men’s Elite RR

30 Sep

No one likes the word “epic” any more, but Yorkshire delivered tough and truly unique conditions for the Elite Men’s Road Race World Championships this year.

Thanks again to Eurosport Cycling for making this happen, and don’t hesitate to click the “no, please help!” link in the upper right of the video player especially if you live in France or outside of Europe as you are likely to have issues with the video if you are in these places.

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How The Race Was Won™ – UCI World Championships 2019, Women’s Elite RR

30 Sep

The great part about the Netherlands women’s team is that it’s deep enough to make an attack at any distance a threat. Seriously.

Thanks again to Eurosport Cycling for making this happen, and don’t hesitate to click the “no, please help!” link in the upper right of the video player especially if you live in France or outside of Europe as you are likely to have issues with the video if you are in these places.

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The Recon Ride Podcast – Men’s Elite World Championships RR 2019

27 Sep

Long, rolling, weird roads, bad weather—the Yorkshire 2019 World’s course opens any number of options for the sport’s biggest country-contested event.

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Photo by s.yuki (CC-BY).

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The Recon Ride Podcast – Vuelta a España 2019, Part 3

10 Sep

The final week and my pre-race selection remains strongly in the lead. But the unorthodox finish of the last five stages (not a single Especial category climb!) might open the door for an opportunist to sneak away with a podium.

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Photo by Hiruka komunikazio-taldea (CC-BY-SA).

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The Recon Ride Podcast – Vuelta a España 2019, Part 2

2 Sep

A very Vuelta first week of crashes and lead changes has finally given way to the real GC race. Four riders are starting to set themselves apart, but with two of them riding for Movistar…who knows.

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Photo by Peter Edmondson (CC-BY-SA).

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The Recon Ride Podcast – Vuelta a España 2019, Part 1

22 Aug

The third Grand Tour of the year tends to bring the most surprises, but with strong GC riders concentrated on just a handful of squads, it could be a straight-up GC battle for the ages.

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Photo by Estevoaei (CC-BY-SA).

 

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How The Race Was Won™ – Tour de France 2019, Stages 18-20

29 Jul

Not, perhaps, the finale everyone wanted or expected, but still a worthy conclusion to one of the most open and undpredictable Tours de France in years.

Thanks again to Eurosport Cycling for making this happen, and don’t hesitate to click the “no, please help!” link in the upper right of the video player especially if you live in France or outside of Europe as you are likely to have issues with the video if you are in these places.

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The Recon Ride Podcast – Tour de France 2019, Part 3

23 Jul

Going into the third week of the 2019 Tour de France, the race has rarely seemed more open. With the toughest stages of the race to come, it should be one for the history books.

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Photo by Adrian Tombu (CC).

 

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