Random Etc. Notes to self. Work, play, and the rest.

Greetings Tube Fans

Thanks to some curious emails and a couple of dormant Google Alerts, it's come to my attention that the Travel Time Tube Map I made a few years ago has had a sudden resurgence of internet fame. My original blog post informs me that it's over 5 years old. Wow!

I'm not sure who rediscovered it first, but thanks to everyone who's linked to it so far including Fast Co. Design, Creativity Online, Wired UK, PSFK, Roomthily, Inteloquent, OpenStreetMap and numerous Twitter and Facebook users.

The map has been picked up by a few books and exhibitions over the years, including the wonderful Form + Code by Casey Reas and Chandler McWilliams. If you're interested in how this kind of work gets made then the book is essential.

If you're interested in a more thorough theoretical exploration of isochrones I can recommend Nicholas Street's Time Contours paper on the subject. If you find yourself yearning for an even deeper treatment of transit data, look around for people like Mike Frumin who take research far more seriously than I do!

If you want to play around with this code for yourself, it should be relatively easy to fix up for current versions of Processing (probably just the fonts will need updating, please leave a comment if there's anything else) and you can get the data here.

I've had a few requests to update the map with current data, including the East London Line and Heathrow Terminal 5, as well as suggestions to include the overground in south London and elsewhere. Sadly I haven't found a coherent and consistent data source that I could drop-in as a replacement for my hand-edited original. The official Transport for London data sources on data.gov.uk look promising, and I've had a couple of under-the-table offers from people with access to time-table data, but these all require more time and effort than I have for the map at the moment. In future I'd like to move the map to a more 201x format like Canvas or SVG, perhaps porting to Processing JS. Perhaps an app? One day...


5 Comments

FYI - The link to the “Travel Time Tube Map” shows as <a hre= and so doesn’t work

Posted by Barbourians on 21 April 2011 @ 5am

Link fixed, thanks Barbourians!

Posted by TomC on 2 May 2011 @ 4pm

Hi, I am a MSc student in GIS from Hong Kong. I am interested in your travel time tube map. I want to make some application on Chinese railway. I don’t know how to do it. Can you help me?

Posted by Fanny on 1 June 2011 @ 11pm

Your map inspired me to create my own version for DC’s Metro: http://www.mvjantzen.com/blog/?p=670 I suspect under the hood they are a bit different. Anyways, big fan of your work!

Posted by Michael on 3 January 2012 @ 11am

[...] in the dynamic maps chapter on page 141. Thanks to our friends at Google I discovered that this¬†Travel Time Tube Map is alive and kicking on the internet. And even better, it is done in Processing, ¬†which is the language I’m learning at this [...]

Posted by The Podular Tube Map « Peter Bakker on 17 March 2012 @ 12am