Challenge 4 of 52: LRT Ticketing Machine

Well, back to LRT again for the fourth design challenge. I didn’t take the LRT everyday but I’ll take one whenever possible especially when going to the city centre. On average I’ll take one round trip per week.
Usually I’ll use the TnGo and rarely have to contend with the ticketing machine. But then when you think about it for a moment, who’s really using the machine anyway? Most likely it’s not the daily commuters but tourists (international and local) and locals who usually get around by private vehicle. Simply put, the machine is to be used by those who are unfamiliar with both the machine in particular and the LRT service in general.
Let’s check out the machine:
There’s the touch screen, coin slot, card reader, and the rest. Not forgetting the LED scrolling display on top as well.

The focus today is on the screen and the map displayed. It is capable of interactivity but somehow underutilized. It even lacks audible and haptic feedback when tapping on the buttons.
The map is also unhelpful to unfamiliar users. It only display the station names and interchanges but no context whatsoever. People wanted to go to a specific place to shop, meet friends or do business not just going to a particular station.
For example somebody might want to go to KLCC Mosque. For those unfamiliar with the route might assume they need to get off at KLCC station. The truth is it is nearer to Ampang Park station compared to KLCC station.
So what’s a better screen should look like? I propose that when the user click on a particular station, it will zoom in and show relevant landmarks around the station. That will give a better sense of direction and context to users. 
Why just stop at landmarks? It is also possible to display ongoing events. Many people will take the LRT to go to exhibitions, conferences and concerts. In fact, they’ll even come by the bus loads! The more they came, the more the confusion so every little bit of help matters.
On a side note, I’ve supervised a simple solution for a similar problem in Penang. Knowing that the Armenian Street heritage area lacks pedestrian map, my mentees came up with a prototype and install it on site. Here’s a video of the little experiment.

That’s it for now, we’ll return to LRT ‘problem’ again in the future. Wish you guys a joyful Eid next week. I’ll try to do a posting next week but no promise since I’ll be busy traveling across states.

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