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On Our Line: The Rail and Transport Podcast

In-depth interviews and analysis of the engineering, politics and history of rail and transport systems across the UK and the world. Presented by Nicole Badstuber and John Bull from London Reconnections, each episode focuses on a single transport topic and features experts drawn from across the industry, academic and political spectrum.
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Jul 1, 2016

Nicole talks to Dr Max Roberts, lecturer in Psychology at the University of Essex, and transport author and informational design expert Peter Lloyd.

Dr Max Roberts is an expert in transport schematics, effective design and how to evaluate them using an objective methodology. He has authored two books on metro maps and conducted design and usability studies for transport bodies including TfL. 

Peter Lloyd, meanwhile, has a background in information and software design. He is also currently documenting the complete history of the New York City subway map, with the first of nine volumes published in 2012. He us currently preparing ‘Diagram Decade,’ a trilogy of books on New York’s experiment with diagram maps which started in 1958.

Together, Roberts and Lloyd discuss the current crisis in metro map design.

As networks and their connections grow in size and complexity communicating this information effectively to the traveller becomes an increasingly complex challenge. The pair talk about the fragmentation of metro map design across the globe and the the falsehood of infinite mental capacity.

They also explore the history of metro map design and design elements in London, Paris, New York and beyond. And discuss the geographic and diagrammatic design schism and how this has manifested in various cities around the world.

 

Our thanks, as always, to our producer Josh

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