SmartSlug: Take the Guesswork Out of Slugging
If you live in the DC area, you know that your quality of life will be impacted by commuter traffic and tolls on the High Occupancy Vehicle (HOV) lanes. In order to alleviate these issues, savvy commuters in the DC area have engaged in a form of hitchhiking known as "slugging" since the 1970s, well before Silicon Valley tried to commercialize commutes. Slugging is a symbiotic relationship between drivers and riders, known as “slugs”, who are commuting to and from the Northern Virginia suburbs. Slugs pay no money to drivers and, in turn, drivers can use the HOV lanes for free, ensuring everyone gets home as inexpensively and quickly as possible – not to mention the benefits for the environment from reducing carbon emissions.
The one major downside to slugging is that it can be a guessing game. Slugs don’t know how many other slugs are standing in line until they arrive, how long they will have to wait, when the next driver is coming, what the next driver’s car will look like, or how many slugs the next driver will pick up. Similarly, drivers often don’t know whether there will be any slugs waiting when they arrive so it’s not uncommon to see long lines of cars at slug lines.
SmartSlug is a mobile web app that alleviates these issues and takes the guesswork out of slugging for both slugs and drivers. It provides slugs with real-time information on slug lines to include the number of slugs in line, average wait, number of drivers in route, estimated time of arrival (eta) for drivers, number of slugs that drivers are picking up, and description of drivers' cars. For drivers, it provides information about the number of slugs waiting in line, eta and distance to the slug pickup location, and the number of other drivers in route.
Last updated 13 Mar 2016