Turnstone is proud to have completed its pre-bid phase of work with Karsan, one of the auto manufacturers bidding to win the New York City Taxi of Tomorrow contract.
Due to hit the streets in 2014, the winning cab must remain a New York icon, but be much more fuel efficient (that is, a greener yellow), with a smaller footprint (no more 18foot Crown Vic canoes) and roomier on the inside (not just for wheelchair but stroller and suitcase access). A bit like Dr Who‘s Tardis, only for hire.
Karsan is paying close attention to all these requirements, and has put forward a built-to-suit solution, rather than modifying an existing model.
Turnstone joined the European consortium to specify how tomorrow’s cab communications might work. As we’ve discussed, tomorrow’s taxi will be more than just a car. It’ll be a personal wireless device on wheels, a way to access services on the go, on the way from A to B.
The project was an amazing opportunity to apply thinking from earlier discovery and definition phases of work to articulate an initial design proposal – drawing from research from the Taxi07 report, and months of independent lectures, Turnstone has reconceived, visualized and put forward what goes on those credit card payment screens, what public service announcements, maps and roof top ads look like inside and out, in a integrated package of passenger- and driver-friendly graphic signage and digital services.
The City is due to choose a winning design by the end of 2010. Meantime, Turnstone would like to thank the Karsan team and all those who shared enthusiasm, insights and recommendations (in an informal capacity) at our winter roundtable, at Google, Teague and Virgin America, social gamers Mudlark, screen technologists, Lumio, Transport Research Institute at Edinburgh Napier and elsewhere. Yes, we talked to in-flight entertainment aviation people. Because taxicab or plane cabin, city maps or in-flight snacks, it’s clear that user-centered designers in both fields have a critical brokering role, influencing the right kind of collaboration between the technologists and engineers to make the whole experience work, planes, trains and for-hire automobiles…