New Yorkers frustrated by the high fares, cramped commutes, and long walking distances to the nearest stop have long loved indulging in the city-wide pastime of playing armchair design critic to the MTA. But is it possible to design a more efficient New York subway system? Like SimCity for subways, Brand New Subway is a new web game that lets you give it a shot—and it just might give you a newfound appreciation for the efficiency of the MTA.
Based upon an accurate map of New York City, the goal of Brand New Subway is to design your own subway line. You do so by putting icons representing existing MTA lines onto the map, with the computer automatically connecting stations into lines by calculating the optimal path between them. Crossovers can also be manually assigned, so that multiple lines form a citywide network.
Where things get interesting is that when you drop a station on the map, Brand New Subway automatically pulls in local data from a variety of sources, including information about population, jobs, transportation demand, taxes, and so on. It then calculates how successful your subway is based on a couple of metrics: how many people it can move on an average weekday, and the cost of a single-ride MetroCard for the network.
Furenexo wants to make assistive tech.
Would you purchase a basic digital camera connected to a 22″ LCD monitor for $3,000?
How about a GPS unit to announce your location for $800?
Unfortunately, a hugely overlooked segment of the population has no choice but to pay these prices for outdated technology – namely, people with disabilities.
We at Furenexo believe it’s time for Makers to become advocates, and recently launched our Kickstarter campaign to develop low-cost, highly accessible assistive technology using open source hardware and software. We see an amazing opportunity to empower Makers to become “enableists”, and make better things — and things better — for our world.
Why Make Assistive Devices?
– Because advances like Arduino, 3D printing, and object/face/voice recognition are making concepts that were only pipe dreams a few years ago possible.
– Because the challenges faced by people with disabilities have been ignored for so long and any progress could have a deep impact.
– Because nobody needs an “Uber for dry-cleaning” or yet another disco light set-up for Burning Man.
– Because engaging with disability at any level could be a personal challenge outside your comfort zone.
– Because around 49 million Americans (3.8 million of whom are veterans) are affected by some physical or sensory impairment. The economic impact of even slightly reducing some of these challenges people with disabilities face could be profound.
– Because just making something to help a neighbor could earn you a smile and thank you to light up your day, and every day.