Transitland Goes to Italy
With help from many partners, Transitland arrived in Italy as part of International Open Data Day earlier this month. Training materials, data coverage, and even a chat bot to look up the next bus departure—all are available now to Italian readers.
Andrea Borruso, a GIS professional in Palermo, wrote an introduction to Transitland in Italian. It's a great read, whether you can read Italian yourself or need to make use of an automated translation service. In either case, you'll probably be hungry by the end, since Andrea's explanation of API endpoints involves busiate pasta.
Also thanks to Andrea, the Transitland Feed Registry includes five different Italian operators. Andrea completed the feed contribution process, which is open to transit agencies and civic groups around the world.
There are certainly more trains, buses, and gondolas in Italy, and we look forward to more submissions.
Quando parte il bus?
One of the most interesting projects to come out of International Open Data Day in Italy, at least to our eyes, was from Francesco Piero Paolicelli. He built a text bot that answers the question When is the next bus coming? using the Datastore API. Because it's built on Transitland, the bot works anywhere in the world where Transitland has coverage.
To try the bot, install Telegram, an open-source messaging service, on your smartphone and query @panarotrebot. You'll get instructions back on how to send your current location and receive bus/train/metro times.
Don't have a smartphone or a Telegram account? You can try Frencesco's web map, also powered by Transitland APIs:
In the spirit of collaborative development, he's shared code for the bot and the web map at on GitHub.
Grazie, Andrea and Francesco. We look forward to seeing what you and your Italian colleagues create next!