Extract GTFS colors for routes.txt (II)

The color of the bus line

In a previous article I’ve written about RATP and the open data it provides. One of the “nice-to-have” things  that are not part of the open data sets is  the data set with the official RGB codes for all the bus lines. Following the analysis from the previous article, I tested it for several bus lines. The results are here.


Again, this is the based on image analysis, not on the named colors  from the official RATP palette. The underlying idea is that if for whatever reason, no matter how unlikely it seems today, the colors change, someone must manually rematch the colors for each line.


The colors in the column on the far right of the table are a mix of the official color and the best guess, as detailed below. It seems that so far, the basic idea is workable.  Is it true for every bus line  ? RATP has the ownership of the data. While I cannot provide here the full results, I will put the small tool I used on GitHub, after some cosmetic changes.

With that tool, you will be able to generate a full set of best guesses. With several hundred lines, it is easier and safer than to manually compare against the official palette. And speaking of the palette, I ignored completely the values in that palette.  What is the purpose of cheating, after all ?

One final note

For the few special bus lines, there is no clear color winner. However, the color perceived by the eye as the background color will  most likely be the best guess. The only official confirmation for the validity of a bus line color comes from the timetables posted at the bus stops, or from the official website, like it is the case for bus line 76.



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