Impressively crafty San Francisco resident Rolf Rando has repurposed an antique elevator indicator as his own personal NextBus clock. Rando, sick of missing the chronically unreliable J Church and hoping to spruce up a drab brick wall at his house, found the panacea to both his transit and interior design woes. On eBay he located an old mechanical elevator indicator, which belonged to a New London, Connecticut, hotel built in 1896, rebuilt the piece, and wired it to display arrival times for the J Church.
To accomplish this technological feat, Rondo used a toolkit from the open-source hardware folks at Arduino along with the NextBus API. He also managed to integrate the elevator's up and down buttons, which determine whether the time indicated is for inbound or outbound trains. He even included an MTA logo made of brass, and stuck it near the clock's lower left corner. Rondo recapped the process in this Medium post—brought to our attention by Muni Diaries—and demo'd the clock in the newsreel-style video above. Now he's advertising his newfound skill. "I'd love a commission to do another one for a home or public space," Rondo writes. "Contact me via Twitter." Given the questionable reliability of Muni's own NextBus signs, we do hope someone high up will take Rondo up on his offer.
· Re-Animating Antiques with Arduino [Medium]
· Muni rider reanimates antique elevator sign as his own NextBus [Muni Diaries]
· The Truth about NextBus Is Finally Revealed [Muni Diaries]