The first manifestation of the First Bus App was laughably unusable in many aspects with unfathomable and unidentifiable lists of services plus a whole raft of incomprehensible maps. fbb was "not Appy" (chortle chortle).
There is a map option ...
fbb is not sure how you might use this option; possibly only of use if you intend to break your journey and continue on the same route? Perhaps fbb is missing something.
But there is no way of obtaining a real timetable, even of the chosen journey.
The only other link is to "information", but ...
But the journey planner seems to work well; it draws its data from Traveline, but sometimes fails to tell you what you need to know. The 899 as shown in the screenshot above is a schooldays bus, but nowhere are you told.
But it is good that First have reverted to something simple, uncluttered and usable. But (off goes fbb on his boring and repetitive beef once again) why cannot we have "proper" timetables?
Useful Or Not?
On a similar theme, the team behind the GoTimetable App and web timetable system have been taking a look at the usefulness of GPS.
But first, a health warning. Most of us know that our snazzy mobile phones have a link to GPS (Global Positioning Satellite) data - the phone knows where it is unless "location" is turned off. But inside your home or office, the phone connects via wifi and thus uses wifi's version of a GPS locator. It is not the same system and can give less accurate results.
Here is a short journey in Seaton with screenshots taken as the bus proceeds through the town. fbb boards at Harepath Road Industrial Estate.
When the techie team sent this to fbb for testing, the old man was unsure of whether it would be any use. As instructed he set off on a round trip; Seaton, Exeter, Axminster, Seaton. Your author had never previously ridden service 4 between Exeter and Axminster and the benefits of the changing colours was immediately obvious.
As the bus trundled along, bars turned to green in just the right amount of time for ringing the bell for next stop. It was very impressive and would offer great comfort and confidence to a passenger who might be unsure of here they were or where they wanted to be.
A great confidence builder, clever technically but oh so simple to understand. And, of course, it is totally independent of the actual time of the bus, however late (or early) it might be.
GPS plotting will be added to GoTimetable Sheffield very soon.
Still Not Appy!
At the risk f further arousing the ire of correspondent Ben, fbb still has to know that the name of the bus to Matford is GRN ...
For the record, the GoTimetable sites use a pathetically simple text search to delve into all the files on the particular system. For Android phone users the App is downloaded and needs no signal once in place. This means that searches are instant. Her for the word "cross".