Why draw a "spider map"? What's wrong with a proper map?
So, where is fbb and his completion of Diane Aggram's stratagem to supply a superior spider? He has coped (incompletely but adequately) with the horrors of Camden Town ...
Before the revised map is formally launched by some incredulous celebrity ...
/ Diane Aggram version, there are a few caveats. Firstly, fbb's steam driven vector graphics programme has no simple facility for doing rounded corners. So there aren't any!
Then a full spider (with every stop shown) would have been too large to show in a readable blog, so fbb has only added main stops, particularly those with interchange with Over- and Under-ground. TfL "spider" posters are huge as per the T-Kartor (contractor to TfL) web site ...
Finally, the chubby one has not attempted to show any rail routes after they leave the area served by the buses. This has been a deliberate decision to reduce information overkill and based on the realistic assumption that passengers travelling further than a single-leg bus journey are likely to be changing from bus to train or vice versa.
So, here it is, warts and all, howlers included in some places; but a tidier effort than TfL's offering. Thanks to the advice of an expert, several hours of sweaty iteration and, most importantly, the use of human brains, there is an improved spider to stimulate debate.
here) is a suitably-sized version which you can enlarge print and examine.
This has been an enjoyable research project for fbb. It illustrates very clearly some of the difficulties of communicating bus routes as they negotiate the challenges of a city's big urban traffic management schemes. One possible conclusion is that Transport for London's [TfL] spiders are a poor effort at achieving this aim. Certainly a reliance on computer software as an alternative to local knowledge does not deliver the best.
No one admits how much TfL spends on spiders but a little bird from "elsewhere" steels himself to tell me that the T-Kartor software in use in one City was "disgracefully expensive"; and there, at least, the results are farcical! fbb wonders whether better spiders would infest London if a real human researched and created the maps. TfL might even save money!
One this is certain, however. TfL has made a complete and utter pigs ear of integrating Underground and Overground rail services into its existing "spides" for South End Green. Do the TfL people know how daft they are? Fortunately bus-plus-rail spiders are, so far, rare. May they ever remain so unless they are done properly.
A final question.