diamond geezer

 Saturday, February 13, 2010

And then, unannounced, TfL developed some lovely new online bus maps. None of your static pdfs here, these are Google map mashups, and they're remarkably flexible. Type a route number into the search box and that bus appears as a coloured line on the map. Search for a place or postcode and a list of nearby buses appears, from which you can select any one of your choice. You can zoom out to see the entire route in one go, or zoom in to see each individual bus stop. At bus stops you can find out which other routes stop there, and also read their timetables so that you know what time the next one's due. It's not realtime or anything, and some of the colours are quite hard to see, but it's damned impressive. It reminds me (and reminds Paul) of the onabus.com website which launched in 2008. That still has the advantage of depicting more than one bus route at a time, whereas TfL's single-route offering has greater oomph and more precise maps. Worth a play, I think. And great for day-to-day journey planning, so long as you know which bus you want.
If you don't know which bus you want, then TfL's spider diagrams are probably far more useful.
Or those paper maps, which remain the least dumbed-down option, I still swear by those.

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