If you use MyBus.org to track Metro buses you may have noticed some downtown or slowdowns recently. While waiting for MyBus to regain its footing, you can check out One Bus Away. OBA uses the same back-end technology, but supports tracking at every bus stop that Metro serves and is a bit easier to use than MyBus. It also supports iPhone, SMS, and even calling into a computer that talks to you.

10 Replies to “Problems Accessing MyBus.org?”

    1. One Bus Away when I’m at the stop, via text message. But when I’m away from my house and going to a stop, I use MyBus because it lets you look up a list of stops (ny route) via text.

      1. True, getting a route stop list is something you can’t do with SMS right now with OBA. Especially since our free SMS provider limits the size of our text messages so pushing out a stop list is hard. Also, since OBA is stop-based instead of time-point based, there are a lot more stops to choose from for a given route.

        If anybody has any ideas on how to address this for SMS, I’m up for discussion. In the meantime, the phone number has a call tree system that you can use to find your stop.

      2. One thing I’d like to see in the OBA text message service (I use TextMarks for a personal project too, so I know how it can be hard to fit stuff in) is shortened destination titles (a la MyBus). As it is, OBA’s SMS returns “14 Rainier Valley, Mount Baker:” where MyBus’ SMS returns “14 SSeattle”, allowing it to list more arrivals in the list. Since OBA users will likely be aware of the bus’ routing, I think it would be an improvement to adopt shorter destination titles.

      3. I would highly recommend slimming them down to around the level of MyBus; a couple times it’s only fit like 3 buses for a downtown stop.

  1. So is there any official word from mybus.org why it’s currently down?? Did they lose their grant money and pull the plug?

    I often before mybus over OBA for a number of reasons, although I’m trying to use OBA more. I hate how OBA doesn’t immediately tell me the regularly scheduled time of an early/late bus. If a bus is late/early, I have to do the (simple) math to determine its regular time. There are some situations I’m in where it’s more important for me to know the regularly scheduled time of the bus instead of knowing the number of minutes until the next one. Yes, I know this is a minor thing, but for me it’s noticeable.

    1. If it makes you feel any better, there has been a lot of internal debate about whether we should show the scheduled time vs the predicted time. And by internal debate I mean my wife arguing that it should be scheduled and myself arguing for predicted. Quote Amy in regards to your comment, “I feel validated.”

      Also, MyBus hasn’t had grant money in years as far as I know. I think it’s just Dan Dailey (original MyBus creator) running it in his spare time as a public service.

      1. Another difference that is good/bad is that I can’t view multiple stops on the same screen. Sometimes this is great as I can obviously pinpoint a specific stop/direction whereas mybus just gives me all the buses for that intersection (which means lots of information I don’t need/want). However, there are times I want all that info. For example, if I’m near broadway and john and want to go to the u-dist, I’ll bring up that intersection on mybus and check the times for the 43 and the 49. Those routes uses different stops, but they cross at that intersection. With OBA I must check several different screens to get all that info.

        Actually, nevermind. I see that I can put multiple route IDs in the query string. Will that always be supported?

        I guess I’m just stubborn and a bit too lazy to set up all new bookmarks for OBA. But since mybus is still down, I might as well go ahead and start settings things up.

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