Subway Reads: Free E-Books, Timed for Your Commute [The New York Times] “On Sunday, Subway Reads started delivering novellas, short stories or excerpts from full-length books to passengers’ cellphones or tablets. The idea is for riders to download a short story or a chapter and read it on the train. Subway Reads will even let riders choose what to read based on how long they will be on the subway — a 10-page selection for a 10-minute ride, a 20-page selection for a 20-minute excursion, a 30-page selection for a 30-minute trip. Delays not included.”
Why New York Subway Lines Are Missing Countdown Clocks. Here is an engaging yet fairly thorough and technical explanation of the signal system(s) used in the NYC Subway (SLAtlantic) [more inside]
Victor Vasquez knows NYC commuting can be depressing. As he says, “Standing under someone’s armpit, you just want to get home.” The MTA conductor livens things up with his unscripted announcements on the 1 train.
Inspired by the Massimo Vignelli NYC subway map and the upcoming Super Bowl at the Meadowlands, NJ Transit unveils a new Regional Transit Diagram (pdf) to help people take public transit between New York and New Jersey. [more inside]
NY Magazine picks the 22 Ingenious Ways to Improve the Subway from this tumblr list (some more practical than others).
Dan Grover and Mike Belfrage have mapped transit inequality in the Bay Area after reading a New Yorker piece on the New York City subway (previously). The ways in which a widening income gap are changing the demography of San Francisco have been widely reported of late (previously, previously). The project's code is available if you'd like to try mapping your own city.
If you've ever wanted to know the history of each of Toronto's streetcar lines, how to identify different TTC subway trains, the chronology of Toronto's Christmas-painted buses, or really anything else you can think of (and more) about Toronto's transit system: Transit Toronto is an unofficial but fantastically detailed site about the TTC. [more inside]
New Toronto Mayor Rob Ford (previously and previously) announced today that he is canceling the Transit City LRT construction plan so the city can concentrate on building subways. The fact that millions of dollars have already been spent and that new subway lines might not be finished until 2020 is apparently beside the point. What matters, according to Ford, is that “The war on the car is over.”
Paris Metro's cheaters say solidarity is the ticket. Scofflaws who jump the turnstiles or enter through the exits of the Paris public transit system have formed mutuelles des fraudeurs — insurance funds that pay the fine if they get caught.
If you're planning a visit to Stockholm, Munich, Bilbao, Shanghai, Dubai, Tokyo, Prague, Moscow, Toronto, and/or Barcelona, don't miss the chance to check out some of these amazing subway stations.
Underground Signs is a company in Brooklyn creating customized NYC subway signs. Other products have horned in on the distinctive look of the MTA's designs, including the map, the train line logos, and the neighborhoods serviced. But this is the first I've seen of the option to create a replica from the NYC underground with one's own name, street, etc. (the site allows you to generate a"Create Your Own" image). [more inside]
NextBus uses GPS to tell you the predicted time of the next bus. Google maps show buses in real time, and you can get updates on your phone/PDA. The coverage is limited to certain agencies within the US, so these other sites might be useful: Hopstop covers subways and buses in NYC, Boston, Chicago, San Francisco, DC, and more. (mobile version) Google Transit has many US metro areas in addition to Canada, Europe, and Japan. (previously) Many more locations inside. [more inside]
Although its App Engine rollout is getting the bulk of the headlines today, Google rolled out another small product: an expansion of its Google Transit website. [more inside]
Getting around underground in NYC is no longer only for people who already know how to get around underground in NYC. Graphic Designer Eric Jabbour has been spending his free time obsessively redesigning MTA transit maps. And the results are striking. Non-New Yorkers will undoubtedly be able to figure out what's what. Cleaner lines and neighborhood boundaries are just a few features. Also, one can clearly see and understand transfer points and more street names.
A Disgusting Practice Vanishes With the Token "Officially, the crime is classified as theft of Transit Authority property. But among transit police officers it is more accurately and less delicately known as token sucking. Unfortunately for everyone involved, it is exactly what it sounds like." (Originally from NYT. More here.)
More senseless killing, boys and girls: an Arson in a South Korean subway. "With 135 people injured, many seriously, and at least 90 people listed as missing, officials say they expect the death toll to rise much higher." This will, no doubt, help in stabilizing the region.
How do they do it? The Guardian sent their reporters to the four corners of the world to review...underground railways. The findings prove predictably that anything is better than The London Underground. In Prague for example: "Not long ago, a man paid for adverts to be put up in all 940 trains, pleading with his girlfriend to take him back. Czechs understand the romantic potential of the metro and it has found its way into a fair amount of the nation's modern literature. "