When we were in Olso, I noticed all these bikes racked up around town. My friend explained to me that you could go online and rent these bikes to use. I thought what a cool idea and wondered if such a concept might work in Boulder. But then I reconsidered since most people seem to own their own bike and sometimes more than one. But I wondered if it might work in larger cities and then I started thinking about the whole logistics of setting these racks up around a major city, liability in case some idiot falls off and decides to sue you and how you would maintain a fleet, etc. etc. In other words, I talked myself out of the idea (not that it was my idea to begin with).
Anyway, I was reading a back issue of Dwell and saw a small write up on Cyclocity, which is run by a French firm called JCDecaux. It is a public bike-sharing system that allows users to pay a small fee to gain access to a fleet of bikes. San Francisco, Portland and Chicago are looking into Cyclocity, as well. The site does not have a lot of information but their case study bullet points are interesting.