Update 2: The Register has a story about Berlin and the Dutch State Railways where the issue of copyright and use of public schedule data by outside application creators has arisen.
The TTC is not alone in fighting against externally built apps.
Original post follows:
There’s a great post and comment thread by Shawn Micallef on the spacing website about yet another non-TTC application to help users get TTC data. This time, it’s an iPhone app.
Update: The Torontoist site also has a post on this (sorry David for not picking up on that earlier).
After the initial burst of launching the still-not-bug-free and incomplete TTC website, work on that site seems to have ground to a halt. At the very least, the TTC should put up a “coming soon” page with a list of committed improvements and dates. This would allow people to spot the things that are still missing, and give us all a sense that the project isn’t stillborn.
One excuse is the need to make documents fully accessible. This places the community who needs such services in the position that they appear to be the problem, rather than the TTC’s own inactivity and lack of preparation for this requirement.
An important issue raised by Shawn (and by others in the past) is the way that the TTC jealously guards its internal data on the grounds that it has some commercial value.
Get off your butts, guys. This is public information and all your sitting on it does is to prevent people from making good use of the data. Other cities make this type of scheduling info freely available, but Toronto is too busy protecting its “intellectual property”.