NeTEx: we’re moving ahead
Introduction for those not familiar with the public transport sector:
NeTEx (mind the capital letters) stands for ‘Network and TimeTable Exchange’ and is a technical standard for exchanging timetables and related information in XML. The Dutch public transport (PT) is currently using a CSV-format still, but is slowly switching over to XML to match the European format. For more information, see this Youtube video.
Just as many other PT-data users, VANL started working with NeTEx as well. We made a conscious decision to have a passive, but following role in these projects. We mainly focused on our new production planning module for our manufacturing side of business the past year, but we are eagerly reading the minutes from the architecture working group. We tackled the line validities and timetable transitions of version 9.2.0. The vehicle characteristics of version 9.2.1 are not life-changing either.
However, the flex-transport has been grabbing our attention. With the fare reservations, flexibility in lines, departure times and entry/exit points it makes for a system that awfully close to cab driving. We are finding ways to be able to not just analyze this data, but also predict what’s needed, as is being done with timetables. More flexibility is crucial for a healthy financial survival rate in PT. So it is about time we start analyzing driving times differently.
When the NeTEx standard is approved by the Strategic Committee and the official files are publicly available, we will create a new staging database and develop an integration script for our TMWalker ODS database. We currently host staging databases for:
- DOVA codespaces (1.1)
- DOVA enumerations (1.1)
- DOVA authorities (1.1)
- DOVA networks (1.1)
- DOVA tarriffzones (1.1)
- ‘Centraal Haltebestand’ (all stops) with PassengerStopAssignments
- Arriva TimeTables (1.0, 9.1.0)
- CXX TimeTables (1.0)
- HTM TimeTables (9.1.1)
- DeLijn TimeTables (20201114) (for our southern friends)
We stick to the versions as mentioned in the original files and not as how they should conform to documentation.
We have been building on our trusted TMWalker ODS database – an in-house further developed European Transmodel database – for over fifteen years. Many sources of PT data have been imported into our own central system and in the versions of our clients. And, as we are pure in our data modeling, it is seldom that we see the need to change our database structure. As with NeTEx, this was only very limitedly needed. (After all, it’s just public transport data…) Naturally, our current clients all receive the patch for these NeTEx database expansions and a guarantee that the TMWalker analysis can handle the data.
The mentioned staging databases will be available at very friendly pricing. We guarantee their upkeep and can make an integration-script to your database structure per request. Of course, you are also able to purchase the TMWalker database where everything already connects 😉
Give us a call (040-2390620) or send an e-mail if you would like to know more.