Tonight I’m attending #igniteCLT 4!

20 Mar

 

I'm Attending Ignite Charlotte!

What’s #igniteCLT? [[MORE]]

 

Well, it’s an evening of 5 minute talks by community members who have the guts to get on stage to tell us about their personal or professional passion. Each speaker gets 20 slides that auto-advance every 15 seconds.

“Enlighten us, but make it quick” is the mantra and key to Ignite talks.  This truly fun, exciting and unique presentation format brings together community members involved in technology, arts, communications, education, non-profit, the government sector and more.

Starting at 7pm, and lasting  as long as my phone battery is alive, I will be live-tweeting tonight’s event using the hashtag #igniteCLT. Follow along at 7pm or catch up with a storify tomorrow.

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Continuing our new tradition of showing the love for transit! #TransitThursday 3/15/2012 favorite reasons for riding transit & pics of our favorite systems! http://storify.com/mamakoid/transitthursday-3-15-2012

16 Mar

#TransitThursday 3/15/2012 (click here for the storify!)

Gallery 16 Mar

Photo Credits to:

  • @jameswillamor James Willamor of Willamor Media for the LYNX Blue Line photos of the Bland Street Station and CTC/Arena Station in Charlotte, NC and the Trolley in Tampa, FL.
  • @smedette Jessica Smedley for the photos of the Bangkok Thailand Skytrain Platform and Skytrain over Erawan Shrine in Bangkok, Thailand.
  • @anabellebee Ana Bayne (Tun) for the photo of the Pittsburgh Bureau of Fire at the PGHTransit Allegheny T+Stop in Pittsburgh, PA.
  • @CCTgirl Ashely Robbins with the Fast Track Forward Collaborative led by the Livable Communities Coalition in Atlanta for the photo of the multimodal bridge at Totes Boulevard in Atlanta, GA.
  • @tracktwentynine Matt’ Johnson for the “Armour Line Up” photo of the MARTA Trains at the Armour Yard in Atlanta, GA.
  • @mamakoid Meghan Makoid (hey, that’s me!) for the LYNX Blue Line Light Rail Train approaching at Tyvola Station in Charlotte, NC.


Image 9 Mar

A wordle created from yesterday’s #TransitThursday tweets!

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• Reading • Listening to music • Sleeping / napping / resting • Working • Catching up on emails • Using social media / tweeting • Texting • Talking to friends • Talking to strangers • People watching • Listening to other people’s conversations • Eating / drinking (only on some systems) • Enjoying the scenery / seeing things you don’t get to notice while driving • Enjoying the company of others in the community • Thinking / planning the day
Others talked about the differences over driving:
• Not having to drive • A cheap & convenient way to travel • Not having to worry about parking • Not having to pay for parking • Avoiding the pump • Not having to pay car payments or car insurance • Ability to use transit to be multimodal • Avoiding congestion • Not having to deal with traffic • Avoiding road rage After all, when was the last time you heard someone say they had “transit rage!”
A few people even touched on the environmental benefits:
• Knowing that you’re doing your part • Helping to save the planet • Actively choosing to not be an SOV
Some answers were pretty entertaining, I’ll leave it at that! Check out my storify for a copy of the tweets from #TransitThursday. Forgive me for any redundant tweets, as several tweets were retweeted by multiple people. I did my best to capture them all! I hope you enjoy!

8 Mar

#TransitThursday (click here for the storify)

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I’m finally posting a summary of tweets from our January 2012 TRB Annual Meeting round table session about using Social Media for Professional Networking. Enjoy! http://storify.com/mamakoid/trbam-2011-ypt-sponsored-session-on-using-social

5 Mar

Social Media & Professional Networking (Click Here to View the Storify)

Gallery 28 Feb

Signs, Signs, Everywhere a Sign

A few years back, I attended an in-house training about designing better pedestrian environments. While I’m sure that I learned a lot about rules, regulations, safety and pedestrian design, one thing that really stuck with me all of these years later is something the instructor said towards the end of the day: “if you have to post signs – you’re doing it WRONG!”

Now I know he didn’t mean we should live in a world without signs, but his point was that the design should be intuitive enough that you do not need to excessively sign. If you have to sign your design, particularly with multiple signs, you have failed; it’s just not going to work!

He was right.

To this day, when I see too many signs posted, I reactively think: OK, what’s wrong with this picture? Why isn’t this design working?

Don’t get me wrong, there are signs that most certainly serve a purpose; stop signs for example. (See also: http://mutcd.fhwa.dot.gov/ for more examples of nationally accepted traffic control signage).

But then there is sign abuse.

This morning, I was preparing my oatmeal, standing in front of our break-room microwave and I was reminded of sign abuse. So yeah, totally unrelated to transportation design, but related to the “if you have to post signs – you’re doing it wrong” mantra.

It really made me think.

If it’s not poor design alone, why do we feel inclined to sign every aspect of our lives? Isn’t enough to simply have signs that protect our health, safety and welfare?

Why is it that we also feel the need to impose additional signage regarding our own personal preferences or more generally our pet peeves about each other?

Why do we want to impose more rules on ourselves even if we don’t have to? How exactly does this satisfy us?

Do we really think if we post these signs that people will actually follow the instruction?

Is it in our human nature to want to ignore signs that tell us what to do?   

If we designed a better world, would we still need or want signs?

Gallery 29 Nov

Rail Runner Station images from my #TurkeyDayTravels in Santa Fe.  You know that your family loves you when they’ll stop at a train station for you, just so you can take pictures of transit geekery. Luckily there was also a farmer’s market at this station, with delicious danishes and strong Santa Fe Coffee! 🙂 I managed to redeem myself after all!

Video 29 Nov

thisbikercouldbeyou:

Really interesting (and only 2 minutes) description/drawings of the cool way the Dutch design their 4 way intersections to allow for safer bikes and pedestrians.

Very cool!

Image 2 Nov

Really digging this living wall treatment that is applied to this parking garage on Duke’s West Campus.