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NextBus testing 16 new SF transit line predictions

sf_muni: Muni arrival times, hidden routes

Click me for a cool Google Map mashup

God, I love NextBus.

If you live in San Francisco and, like many folks, rely on SF MUNI to get from place to place, your life gets at least one order of magnitude more liveable when you can consult NextBus's GPS-based arrival predictions for the seven streetcar lines and a handful of popular electric coach (read: "bus") lines.

Of course, NextBus itself is nothing new, but, yes it still completely rules, and yes, I still meet at least one San Franciscan a week who has no idea that NextBus even exists. So, you know. You're welcome.

Anyhow, if you're new to the world of non-roulette-like MUNI transit, here's the current official coverage:

Now, what is new (to me at least) is that it looks like MUNI and NextBus are (non-publicly) testing this august service on several more bus and cable-car lines, and that you can currently get predictions on any them from the web or your phone right now. Although apparently not officially supported yet, here's the 16 new additions (hoisted from the LJ post where I learned about this):

My tip for you: if you have web service on your mobile phone, bookmark the 6-10 stops that you use the most -- do it now. Having those predictions handy (and not needing to type with your thumb in the rain while some guy on Sixth Street is yelling at you about his recently-stolen thoughts) will serve you well in the moist upcoming months, I promise. All hail NextBus!

And, as ever, remember that you can always call 511 to get updated info on Bay Area traffic and transit. I've never tried it for public transit predictions, but apparently you can get MUNI and BART arrival times through a short phone-jail menu. Sweet.

dbTodd's picture

I was in Edinburgh in...

I was in Edinburgh in August and the bus system had a similar service, but at the bus stops themselves. There may have been a web service but I don't know. At each bus stop was a screen (simple old style lcd screen) that would list the next 3-4 buses due to arrive at that stop and the estimated time of arrival. What is great about this is that you know which lines are coming to that stop and can alter your route on the fly. The web site approach would benefit from the ability to view a bus stop also to see all the routes coming to that stop. Rather cool system.




An Oblique Strategy:
Honor thy error as a hidden intention


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