UIC Shuttle Tracker
The UIC Shuttle Tracker
was developed by BITS Lab as a service to the UIC community. It provides the real-time location of the buses operated by the UIC Intercampus Bus Service
, as well as nearby CTA buses.
How to use it
Aside from the obvious (colored buses on the map indicate real time location of shuttles), there are a few subtleties worth mentioning.
- You may click on a bus to see its predicted arrival times at future stops.
- You may click on a stop (the round white marker), to see the next predicted arrival times at that stop.
- Occasionally, you may see a black bus on the map. Black buses are buses that haven't yet been determined to belong to any given route. This classification is done automatically based on driving patterns.
- The gray boxes indicate CTA bus locations. These are updated once every 30 seconds. The suffix after the number indicates the direction of movement (East, West, North or South).
How does it work?
In each bus, we have installed a small PC, with a GPS receiver and a cellular modem. Every second, the computer checks the GPS location, and sends it over the cellular modem to our server. This takes care of the location updates. This part of the service was developed primarily by M.Sc. student Balakrishnan Radhakrishnan
However, buses are used interchangeably between the different bus routes. Each moving bus is continuously classified as belonging to one of the four campus routes, or to no route at all. This is done using the Viterbi algorithm on a hidden markov model based on the bus schedules. Finally, once a bus has been classified as belonging to a route, we compute arrival time predictions. Arrival time predictions are made based on historical travel times from past trips. The route classification and arrival time predictions algorithms were developed primarily by IGERT Ph.D. student Tomas Gerlich
At the moment, our plan is to make the web interface accessible to a variety of web-enabled smart-phones, to avoid having to develop device-specific applications. If you are interested in developing device-specific applications, please see below.
A service for retrieving arrival time predictions via a text-based interface is under development.
If you are interested in developing a web mashup, mobile application or other software using the UIC shuttle tracker data, you are most welcome to do so. The raw tracking data is made available through an open XML feed
. Arrival time predictions can be accessed per stop like this
If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact us
There are several project opportunities for UIC students interested in working on the shuttle tracker and affiliated services. These projects may be eligible for CS398 research credits.