Tuesday, April 28, 2015

Eugene Oregon Private vs Public Transit

 Car Oriented Neighborhoods

        Here in Eugene, Oregon, people refer to all trips in terms of time. One waitress said, "You can get anywhere in Eugene in less then 15 minutes." A sales clerk said, "Gas is cheap and you can park anywhere." What they fail to tell you is that the only way to get anywhere in a reasonable time is to drive a car there.
        Here in Eugene, Oregon, the average public transit trip can range from 15 minutes to over 1 hour. This in a town were it is possible to drive anywhere in less than 15 minutes.
        Even worse, several bus lines run only once per hour.
        Millions of dollars (if not billions in today's money) have been spent of roads in Eugene: Widening them, adding double left turn signals, reducing cross walks, and building a limited access belt line (two lanes each direction).
        The only real money now being spent on public transit is construction of the EMX bus rapid transit system. Here the numbers are better. These buses run once each 8 minutes mid day each weekday, and a trip downtown from the end of the line is only 16 minutes in-bound, but 55 minutes out-bound.
        To compete successfully with cars, the Lane Transit District should run all bus lines with a 10 minute or better frequency, and no trip, including transfers should take longer than 15 minutes from pickup to drop off. Anything less than these times and LTD will fail to compete with cars and fail to draw drivers from cars and onto buses.
        The only way to achieve such times would be to use limited access light rail with no grade crossings. Could such a system ever be built?  I doubt it, because Oregonians will never spend as mush money on public transit as they do on roads.

Monday, April 6, 2015

Ello Fails Email Change

Can't change his email address!

Ello is an alternative to Facebook. For authors who need to spread word about their publications. The more social sites the better, of course. But what happens when an author moves and needs to change his or her address, phone number and email address?

I will tell you. With Ello you cannot change your email address ever! Ello uses your email address and password together as your login credentials. Despite showing a green check mark when you type in a new email address, that change never takes. The only alternative that I see is to close the old account (lose all your followers) and create a new account with a new email address.

The programmers that created Ello focus too much on the interface and too little on understanding the changing needs of users. It is too bad there is no way to directly contact them :-(

Sunday, April 5, 2015

A Lane Through Time

Two shadows moving through time

After moving to Eugene, Oregon, I signed up for my first writing group. Called the Lane Literary Guild, I was surprised that I had to send a check by surface mail to join. The experience was just like going back in time. My new office is a room at the side of a house in a residential neighborhood of Eugene. I began life in just such a house. Back then there were only dial phones and all payments had to be cash or a check. I carried the mail out to the mailbox and put the letter in it for the mail carrier to pick up. How quaint!

I asked why I could not sign up on-line, and was told that they were too small and didn't have the programming expertise to add on-line payments to their site. Very sad.

This week I will contact the Wordos of Eugene and see if they will accept me as a member.