Week 205: the hardest measure to measure
Dialled into a (Microsoft Teams) conference call about the bally Bus Open Data Service. Sometimes when straightforward provincial bus managers clash with highfalutin London consultants it can be sort of entertaining, but this was just dispiriting. There’s rightly been some discourse about the state’s addiction to the services of the big four accounting firms (the “big three” in American, phonetically similar to the “big three” men’s tennis players), and I have nothing intelligent to say, but ugh those creeps make me queasy.
This time, one of the things they were on about was “timetable matching”, which to a lot of people sounds like measuring punctuality, but it isn’t, communication is hard. There’s a longer separate something to be written, containing phrases like “worshipping at the altar of block numbers” and examining the folly of measuring things just because they’re easy to measure not because they’re the best measures to measure. It will be a pity if the measurers’ measurements lead to things like rail replacement buses, poultry processing plants’ staff shuttles, things of that nature being expunged from vehicle location feeds in order to gee up data quality scores, but let’s wait and see.
On Wednesday 22nd February the NTA will publish a new set of real time APIs from the NTA developer portal
A great opening sentence which I couldn’t help reading in a certain kind of sonorous voice and autocompleting to “and you’ll see why 1984 won’t be like 1984.” With that and the release of Cocaine Bear (2023), it’s going to be a big week.
Not a single flower?