Sensing the Moscow Metro

Two students at the Strelka Institute, an design school in Moscow, took on scraping together personal data that could be found on the Moscow metro, extracting, like you do with raw data, proxies for meaningful relationships.

Their observation that people check in at their home metro stations most is interesting. The exciting part is that they built a device to measure stimuli and bodily response. This chart correlates a ride on the Sokolnicheskaya Line, also known as the “red line,” and set to 11 when it comes to Stalinist Architecture. Look at the chart:

It’s not really a new idea, but I don’t think I’ve ever seen it applied to a subway system. The designers of the Washington Metro put a lot of thought into the sensory cues for riders, from the comfort levels in the cars, to the blinking lights that indicate a sudden blur of light and a darkening of the station.

They have some other ideas, which you can see in their presentation:

You can take a look at their arduino-based specifications here. Madeline Schwartzman’s book See Yourself Sensing is also worth a look.