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April 10, 2013 3:33 AM   Subscribe

London transport in real time
posted by mippy (16 comments total) 14 users marked this as a favorite

 
Cool! Although I did see one runaway train that crossed the map at aircraft-type speeds?!
posted by Harald74 at 3:37 AM on April 10, 2013


I just watched a train launch itself off Maida Vale, through Paddington towards Chelsea. Oh the humanity.
posted by ardgedee at 3:46 AM on April 10, 2013 [3 favorites]


So this information is available to everybody but apparently not TFL. When I'm standing on a H&C Line platform, east of Monument, travelling eastbound, I would find out when then next Hammersmith & City line train is arriving quicker if TFL posted an announcement in back pages of The Times.
posted by Brian Lux at 3:52 AM on April 10, 2013 [1 favorite]


Oh my God this is amazing. Watching this feels like being high.

I imagine.
posted by running order squabble fest at 4:15 AM on April 10, 2013 [3 favorites]


Ah, I thought this might be a double, but it looks like a different app.
posted by Decani at 4:29 AM on April 10, 2013


Decani, I think it's an update of that previously posted app. Like the old version, my iPhone finds it impossible to deal with the map and the animated data overlaid. It's freaking out even with a nice wifi connection. Doubt it would be much use standing on a platform in Whitechapel. Pretty though.
posted by Brian Lux at 4:43 AM on April 10, 2013


Hey, I can see my house from here! Apparently some Circle stations are missing from the TfL API, but that's par for the course for Circle.
posted by ersatz at 4:47 AM on April 10, 2013


So this information is available to everybody but apparently not TFL. When I'm standing on a H&C Line platform, east of Monument, travelling eastbound, I would find out when then next Hammersmith & City line train is arriving quicker if TFL posted an announcement in back pages of The Times.

That's because the Hammersmith & City doesn't go via Monument. The Circle does, and the existence of the Circle Line is just a joke that we play on tourists.

In seriousness, looks like he's pulling the timetable API data and then doing some clever maths so there's a certain amount of eduated guesswork there - probably enough to make the +/- on it too great for it to be a usable method for TfL themselves.

Train time announcements (and indeed timings) should improve on the SSL shortly though - the new signalling is now pretty much in place everywhere on both the Met and the H&C/Circle, and they're now even running the new S-Stock the full length of the Hammers (but they're not yet brave enough to run it in the peak).

Not only does that give them a nice, modernised computer signalling system to pull accurate location data off, but the S-Stock is RFID-chipped up to buggery as well (that's how it knows what length the platforms are on the Hammers, which needs selective door opening, and thus which doors the train operator can open).

There's some great stuff on the TfL section of the London Assembly's Open Data Store by the way, for those feeling like they want to get developy.

I've been playing with pulling Cable Car passenger numbers using HighChart over the last couple of days. Would love to do something really pretty with the data on where Tube passengers board/alight, but I don't have the design chops (if there's anyone who fancy's giving me a hand with that drop me a MeMail).
posted by garius at 4:52 AM on April 10, 2013 [2 favorites]


That's because the Hammersmith & City doesn't go via Monument.

You're right, I should have said east of Aldgate East. And I should have said travelling Westbound. I was confused by my own annoyance.

Still, the information available on the eastern ends of the District and the H&C has been consistently awful. The dot matrix displays often only tell you when your next train will be arriving with only 1 minute lead time. Surely this information has always been available at LU's central control room?

For some reason the shittiness of the H&C service has importance for me disproportionate to other much more rational problems in my life. I can't explain this.

And why do westbound H&C trains never seem to get right of way entering Liverpool Street?! (See?)
posted by Brian Lux at 5:46 AM on April 10, 2013


Mornington Crescent!
posted by fight or flight at 6:17 AM on April 10, 2013 [6 favorites]


This is fantastic and - I just tested - very accurate. We can hear District line trains passing under our building - there's a deep rhythmic rumble. Using the map I watched one approach and heard the rumble at the precise moment the dot passed under our street. Wonderful and useful. Surely TFL will quickly squash it.
posted by WPW at 7:33 AM on April 10, 2013 [3 favorites]


Addictive, too. Here comes another one!
posted by WPW at 7:39 AM on April 10, 2013


Everyone who takes the tube knows that the train indicator boards do not correspond to Earth minutes.
posted by colie at 8:01 AM on April 10, 2013 [1 favorite]


Everyone who takes the tube knows that the train indicator boards do not correspond to Earth minutes.

Bus times are even more bizarre; buses tend to disappear and reappear into some odd Lovecraftean spaces between, if the stop times feeds are to be believed.
posted by acb at 8:09 AM on April 10, 2013 [1 favorite]


Surely TFL will quickly squash it.

looks like they're being reasonable - here are their guidelines for developers (from the page on branding:
"Use our data, but don't pretend to be us

We're here to support and encourage innovation and help you make the best, most accurate apps, widgets and online tools out there."

posted by Bwithh at 8:16 AM on April 10, 2013


I know what I'll be doing the rest of the work day.
posted by waving at 8:27 AM on April 10, 2013


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