Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Public initiatives: OC Transpo Network



Craig Davey, local software designer and transit enthusiast, recenty launched the OC Transpo Network (http://octranspo.net) as an alternative to the transit utility's official website. Dissatisfied with the customer service provided at the official website, Davey created the OC Transpo Network with an intuitive, browser-friendly presentation and a very simple-to-use search function: Either enter your stop number or a street name, and all connections pop up with their destinations and upcoming scheduled arrivals.

Here's what Davey had to say about what got him started on his project, and what he hopes people can get out of it:

"I created the OC Transpo Network because I was frustrated by all of the other timetable services I could find. I wanted bus stop pages that I could bookmark and I wanted timetables that were optimized for now. None of the official sites or unoffical hacks cut it so I crafted my own.

"I’m hoping that people find the site useful and convenient. I’m also hoping that a little bit of competition might push OC Transpo to improve their existing web services. In my opinion “customer service starts with http://” and the customer service at OCTranspo.com sucks.

"It’s a shame because I find the rest of their services are pretty good but the impression you get from their website is that they haven’t got a clue."
If you haven't visited the website yet, do it: http://octranspo.net. It's really, really impressive, and it's an easy website that's not bogged down by unnecessary content: It's a travel-planning utility that is not just easy but also pleasant to use. The feature of 'Bookmarking your bus stop' is also very useful, as you can quickly access your most commonly-used bus stops for quick schedule-checking.

EDIT: Unfortunately, Mr. Davey told me that there programming difficulties that come with using his service in Internet Explorer, so anyone using that browser is automatically re-routed to the official site. If you're using or have access to another browser, such as Firefox or Safari, you should be fine with accessing--and enjoying--OCTranspo.net.

6 comments:

Wassim said...

Excellent website, indeed.

I hope OCTranspo picks it up. (And compensates Davey for his incredible work!)

Wassim said...

Also, it looks great from my iPhone.

Two Hats said...

I used to think octranspo.com sucked, and then I tried the TTC, NY's MTA, and Chicago's CTA, and realised how much worse it could be....
So, is there room for improvement at octranspo.com? Absolutely. But we should recognise that as clunky as it is, it provides users with lots of info, reasonably clearly.

Laura said...

.net seems to be bought up by octranspo.com . It boots me to octranspo.com when I click Davy's link. Too bad - I was looking forward to perusing it.

Peter said...

Unfortunately, Mr. Davey told me that there programming difficulties that come with using his service in Internet Explorer, so anyone using that browser is automatically re-routed to the official site.

If you're using or having access to another browser, such as Firefox or Safari, you should be fine with accessing--and enjoying--OCTranspo.net.

Anonymous said...

OCTranspo is not a reliable service.

It does suck. Some other systems suck too but don't let that take away from the fact that OCTranspo still sucks.

Did I mention that OCTranspo sucks?