I had the opportunity to be apart of the Moonshine Laboratory GovHack team this year. Over the 48 hours we had to build something using public datasets we came up with BUZZSTOP.
With comprehensive public transport data available its time to start thinking about how that information can be used to help the commuter when it is relevant. For all of that data only a small sliver is needed at one moment but that data is invaluable. Checking the weather in the morning using an app is so quick and simple which can mean the difference between a jacket or a raincoat. Being able to see realtime arrival times can change if we have enough time to drop into the shops on our journey home or if a second service will be waiting at an interchange.
This project wasn't necessarily about the app itself. Our objective was to focus on the use of the data, to show how invaluable it can be even for the everyday commute. Using Bluetooth beacon technology will allow identification of a stop or a vehicle to contextualise the important information without user intervention.
Moreover, making the contextual data available automatically will allow commuters with vision impairments to be able to use public transit with more confidence and efficiency when only the absolutely necessary information is displayed (available with VoiceOver) without the presence of potentially irrelevant, disruptive data.
This is only the very tip of a deep, churning iceberg. From the introduction of such a small passive device and idea of how to use the data we can achieve such a wealth of information and efficiency to improve our interaction with public transport.