Springtime Review

Thank you to the vast number of you who have taken the “How Do You Use OpenTrainTimes?” Survey. It’s open for the next three weeks, so if you haven’t responded yet, please do so. The results are interesting, useful and in some cases, quite surprising – and they’re shaping plans for the future.

One of the most requested features is real-time train movement data. I’ve been working in the background for the past couple of months on getting this up and running, and I’ve made excellent progress in the past two weeks. Assuming I continue at this pace, I’m estimating releasing OpenTrainTimes 2.2 with real-time train movements in three weeks.

Something else I’ve been working on is producing timetable data for Great Britain in GTFS format. After chatting to a few people at the FutureEverything Innovation Challenge this weekend, I realised that there are 587 transit agencies providing GTFS data, and seemingly nobody in Great Britain.

What do I normally do when there’s a gaping hole in a domain that I understand and care about? I fix it, and I’ve created data.opentraintimes.com which will have a daily-updated GTFS-format snapshot of GB timetable data. There are just two more bugs to fix relating to trains which run overnight, but I’m anticipating fixing these early this week.

On to this week’s updates – as I’ve been so busy doing other things, there are only a few minor bugs which I’ve fixed:

  • The London Waterloo – Earlsfield/Chiswick/North Sheen map had platform numbers at Barnes and Putney labelled incorrectly. Note that due to caching, you might still see the old map for a couple of hours)
  • When using Internet Explorer 9, the Feedback link was rotated incorrectly
  • Trains at Stratford Parkway (STY) weren’t showing
  • Times on the homepage were an hour behind reality

Expect a period of relative quiet over the next couple of weeks whilst I get real-time data up and running – but please, as always, keep your feedback coming!

// Peter

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