Archive | Transit Tools

Our Two Latest Transit Appliances

When classes begin at the new Collaborative Life Sciences Building (a PSU/OHSU joint venture) in South Waterfront, students will be greeted by not one, but TWO large-screen transit appliances in the building.

The building atrium is cavernous. The screen is taller than my daughter – 80″ inches on the diagonal I believe (our biggest ever) – but still looks small in the space!

Transportation between the building and the PSU main campus will be a bit constrained this year (next year MAX will carry a lot of the load), so information about Streetcar arrivals is important!


Hack on the Transit Appliance Next Week

Last week I mentioned that TriMet had released a set of upgraded APIs.

Now it looks like I’ll get a chance to play with them – and I hope you’ll join me!

I’ve been asked to lead a session on the new APIs at next week’s TriMet Hackathon. Skip Newberry, President of the Technology Association of Oregon will be my co-leader. And we’re going to use it as an opportunity to improve the Transit Appliance.

My hope is that within the session we’ll be able to:

  1. Upgrade Transit Appliance to use the new v2 arrivals service, including handling all the new arrival statuses (like delayed arrivals)
  2. Incorporate new detour information from the API to show detour information in the crawl at the bottom of the appliance screen

I’ll bring along some Transit Appliance hardware so we can show our results in real time at the end of the event. I’m hoping some of you JavaScript folk will come out and join me (and we’ll have ways for folks with other skills to help too!). Registration is free!


Via Planetizen:

Research out of the University of Washington shows that information tools that let riders know when the next bus is coming reduce perceived wait time compared to not knowing when the vehicle is arriving. Transit agencies can give customers improved satisfaction without major investments in additional service.

Now I’d never say that TriMet shouldn’t keep improving service, but would anyone care for a Transit Appliance?

Transit Appliance: Now with Weather

I usually have some free time around the holidays, and like to use it as an opportunity to advance the Transit Appliance project.

This year that looks like adding weather as an option to the display. Want to know if you need your umbrella when you run for the bus? We’ll tell you.

The widget is based on the API, and we’re using the feature that provides a forecast for the next 60 minutes. You can position the widget either the top or the bottom of the list of arrivals.

Because this is a commercial API (and the key needs to remain confidential), if you’d like it on your appliance we need to work out a few details. Just let us know.