The Moving Image: Taxi Patterns
January 25th, 2008
The images above are animated maps of taxi patterns in the San Francisco area, gleaned from GPS data by Cabspotting, an effort of The Exploratorium, a local museum.While the installation of GPS technology in every taxi in the New York fleet was a major complaint by striking cabbies and their sympathizers, the technology is well on its way to being incorporated into our city. Could New York now use the technology to produce such maps here? What could we gain from it, other than a very interesting art project?
The Exploratorium takes suggestions for various Cab Projects, which are individual websites that use the technology for differing purposes, to help answer that question. One of their projects found anecdotal evidence (point 8 on the map) that new cabbies congregated around the San Francisco downtown area, while more experienced drivers traveled between residential areas and medical centers.
Here in New York, another design intensive taxi study occurred a few months ago, before GPS technology arrived. A comprehensive look at the cabbies’ world was presented in a similarly engaging, albeit static, presentation (a 160 page book) called Taxi 07: Roads Forward, published by The Design Trust for Public Space, in cooperation with the Taxi and Limousine Commission.By Mike Muller on January 25, 2008, 11:20 am
In category: Arts, Tech, Transportation | 1 Comment »