Public transit companies started as carts pulled by horses. Sometime during the 19th century, the omnibus appeared: a big vehicle moving through a city, transporting more than a dozen people. Then, in the early 20th century, a new invention come into use: the city bus: a piece of machinery that moved without horses. It’s still in use today, although its design has changed many times, especially during the last 20-30 years and it continues to change..
All those years, the basic function was the same: carry people from downtown to the suburbs, from the city hall to the theater, from point A to point B. This is no longer true. New functionalities and services have appeared. The age of internet forced transportation agencies to shift the gear and adapt (or die).
It is now customary for every transit agency to have a website, although most of them are still primitive by modern standards. Nevertheless, it is better than nothing. Big-budgeted companies have beautifully rafted sites. Small, countryside agencies offer just the basic information, if any, like the static timetables and a JPEG map of the network. For some, it is enough. Not for me.
A newcomer in a small town knows nothing of the network. How do I know where to hop on and where to hop off, like some city tour buses are advertised ? Google ? Why ? Because the transit agency didn’t do its homework? No. Enough. It is time for them go really enter the age of internet and the thousands of technologies that come with it.