Stubblog


Making things better.
January 4, 2009, 1:05 pm
Filed under: Uncategorized | Tags: , ,

The Next Bus is the name of my latest little web app, and this is a little post to explain why I wrote it.

Ever since I started my new job, I’ve had to start learning a whole new bunch of bus times. My last job was easy, I just used to wander across the road to the interchange and wait for the 29, the timetable told me when the next one was available.

Now however I have to catch the bus from West Bar, and the timetable just says “up to every X minutes”, but no indication of when that actually is.

There is however a service provided by Travel South Yorkshire, but good luck trying to view that on your mobile phone or PDA, even if your device can render the seemingly infinite recursion of frames, the table that presents the timetable is missing some vital tags, the one that starts a new row for example, the HTML just gives the tags to end a row. More by good luck than good judgement, most desktop browsers manage to render this.

So last night I decided to do something about it. I’ve written a web app that takes the bad markup and cleans it up, rendering your stop information as valid XHTML 1.0 Strict.

Go to http://thenextbus.appspot.com with your mobile device and enter your stop number, if you’re not stood next to the bus stop right now, you can find the stop number by searching http://tsy.acislive.com/. Once you have your stop on screen, simply save it as a bookmark to use next time.

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4 Comments so far
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[…] So if you have an internet-enabled smartphone, bookmark http://thenextbus.appspot.com/ now. And send your thanks to the person who developed it. […]

Pingback by An improved bus service (on your mobile phone) « Sheffield blog

I’m sure yours is a great app (I haven’t looked at it), Stuart, but couldn’t the local authority produce a rss feed for this info? Just a thought.

Comment by Richard Williams

Richard,

You’re absolutely right, the local Passenger Transport Authority (not the local authority in this case) could provide a semantic version of the data they hold, in fact if they did it would have been a heck of a lot easier for me to write if it were.

I wrote about this very thing in July last year and you can read it here:

https://stubblog.wordpress.com/2008/07/08/councils-should-concentrate-on-providing-data-not-services-on-their-websites/

Comment by Stuart Grimshaw

[…] 20, 2009, 11:21 am Filed under: Uncategorized I’ve had a bit to say about the state of travel information online, and regular readers will know what I think the solution is. So when I heard […]

Pingback by South Yorkshire Transport website to get an overhaul « Stubblog




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