Jeff's Knowledge Nosh

Your daily bite of miscellaneous information.

Scramble!

Yesterday we continued the discussion of signals, and in a way, today continues on the theme with a signal for a different transportation mode: walking. Specifically, this post is an ode to the scramble. Found increasingly in major metropolitan areas, scramble...

Switches and Signals

Happy Thanksgiving! Last week's post before the holiday introduced subway signals, and today continues on the topic (make sure you've read the prior post before proceeeding). Think about the red signal. Often indicating “stop,” it tells trains to, well, stop. But...

Clear Ahead

Every day, millions of people rely on subways and trains to travel, and the signal system akin to more advanced traffic lights is responsible for ensuring their safe operation. Ever wonder how they work? You're about to find out. Most railroads operate by defining...

Sideways Falls

As you'll likely notice, yesterday's post has been delayed until today. What's the excuse? Being out of the country. Although currently writing this from a train in Toronto, today's topic relates to the wonder that is Niagara Falls. Home to three distinct waterfalls...

Status in the Sky

While flights may be delayed for a multitude of reasons, the vast majority are associated with airport-wide events (rather than mechanical or airline system issues that impact only a subset of one's operations). Luckily, data for those types of events is aggregated...

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More Knowledge Noshes Below

Scramble!

Yesterday we continued the discussion of signals, and in a way, today continues on the theme with a signal for a different transportation mode: walking. Specifically, this post is an ode to the scramble. Found increasingly in major metropolitan areas, scramble...

Switches and Signals

Happy Thanksgiving! Last week's post before the holiday introduced subway signals, and today continues on the topic (make sure you've read the prior post before proceeeding). Think about the red signal. Often indicating “stop,” it tells trains to, well, stop. But...

Clear Ahead

Every day, millions of people rely on subways and trains to travel, and the signal system akin to more advanced traffic lights is responsible for ensuring their safe operation. Ever wonder how they work? You're about to find out. Most railroads operate by defining...

Sideways Falls

As you'll likely notice, yesterday's post has been delayed until today. What's the excuse? Being out of the country. Although currently writing this from a train in Toronto, today's topic relates to the wonder that is Niagara Falls. Home to three distinct waterfalls...

Status in the Sky

While flights may be delayed for a multitude of reasons, the vast majority are associated with airport-wide events (rather than mechanical or airline system issues that impact only a subset of one's operations). Luckily, data for those types of events is aggregated...

The Refrigerator Theory

Today is a piece of wisdom from the Kessler family known as the Refrigerator Theory: if you're going to have something for a while, it's worth upgrading it. Why's it known as the refrigerator theory? A fridge is typically something people keep for quite some time. As...

Building Up

Think about the most densely populated municipality in the nation. What’d you guess? New York? If so, you’re not that far off; just cross the Hudson. Located across the river from New York, you’ll find the tiny, tiny, tiny municipality of Guttenberg, NJ. Spanning...

Change Sensitive

There are many components to economics that are basic intuition to many, but whose terminology is often foreign to the general public. Elasticity is a phenomenon that often falls in that category. Generically speaking, elasticity is a measure of sensitivity and...

Mind the Leaves

Slippery Rail Season is one of the most dreaded times of year for any rail-based transit system; however, it’s one of the least understood phenomenons by the public and is often heralded as a lame excuse for poor service. Here’s what happens. During the autumn season,...

Spooky Baseball Celebrations

As I recover from spending more than eighteen hours in the field supporting rail operations for the Boston Red Sox’s World Series victory parade and train service to Salem for Halloween, I couldn’t help but think back to the 2008 Phillies World Series which also fell...

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