A

API (Application Programming Interface)

A software intermediary that allows two applications to talk to each other. An API is a set of commands, functions, protocols, and objects that programmers can use to create software or interact with an external system. It provides developers with standard commands for performing common operations so they do not have to write the code …

App store

An online shop where apps can be found and downloaded to your mobile phone. The app store for Android devices is called the Play Store. The app store for Apple devices is actually called the ‘App Store’.

ATCOCode (Association of Transport Co-ordinating Officers Code)

A unique identifier UK-wide for bus stops used in NaPTAN.

AVL (Automatic Vehicle Location)

Automatic Vehicle Location systems provide the GPS coordinates where a vehicle actually is.

B

BODS (Bus Open Data Service)

BODS provides bus timetable data for every local bus service in England. It emerged from the Bus Services Act 2017, which included improvements designed to make commercial bus services more accessible to passengers and is a Department for Transport led initiative to enable new applications, products and services for passengers. Commercial bus operators must add …

C

Cache

A software cache stores data so that future requests for that data can be served faster; the data stored in a cache is the result of an earlier request for the same data which is then stored locally or somewhere along the network, such as a router or switch network device. The more requests that …

CMS (Content Management System)

Software that facilitates creating, editing, organising and publishing content. Drupal and WordPress are examples of Content Management Systems that allow you to create and publish content on the Internet.

CSV file

CSV is a simple file format used to store tabular data, such as a spreadsheet or database. Files in the CSV format can be imported and exported from programs that store data in tables, such as Microsoft Excel or OpenOffice Calc. CSV stands for “comma-separated values”.

D

DNS (Domain Name System)

The Domain Name System is the phonebook of the internet. Each device connected to the internet has a unique IP address which other machines use to find the device. DNS servers eliminate the need for us to memorise IP addresses such as 192.168.123.1

E

ETM (Electronic Ticketing Machine)

ETMs are machines with computer processors and memory which issue tickets for travel. ETMs are either designed for in-vehicle use, as fixed or handheld units, or for use at stations and other off-bus locations in the form of electronic kiosks.  In-vehicle fixed electronic ticket machines (ETM) are most commonly used on bus services, although they …

G

GBFS (General Bikeshare Feed Specification)

The open data standard for bikeshare. GBFS makes real-time data feeds in a uniform format publicly available online, with an emphasis on findability. Under the North American Bikeshare Association’s leadership, GBFS has been developed by public, private sector and non-profit bike share system owners and operators, application developers, and technology vendors. GBFS is intended as a specification …

GTFS (General Transit Feed Specification)

A data specification that allows public transport operators to publish their transit data in a format that can be consumed by a wide variety of software applications. Today, the GTFS data format covers both static and real-time data and is used by thousands of public transport providers. You can learn more about the GTFS specification …

H

HOPS (Host Operator or Processing System)

The central system which holds information about everyone’s smart cards. HOPS automates many of the complex daily tasks of a smart transport ticketing scheme including transaction processing and asset management.

I

i18n (Internationalisation)

Internationalisation (sometimes shortened to “I18N, meaning “I – eighteen letters -N”) is the process of planning and implementing products and services so that they can easily be adapted to specific local languages and cultures, a process called localization. The numbers refer to the number of letters in the words (because it’s easier to type). In …

ISRN

The serial number encoded on a smart card but not known to a customer.

L

L10n (Localisation)

Localization refers to the adaptation of a product, application or system to meet the language, cultural and other requirements of a specific target market (a locale). Localisation is sometimes written as l10n (where 10 is the number of letters in the English word between l and n). L10n covers translating and things like changing date formats, e.g. translating Cardiff …

M

MCRN

Serial number printed on the front of a smart card.

N

NaPTAN (National Public Transport Access Node)

The UK’s national dataset of public transport access points (bus stops, rail stations, airports, ferry piers, tram/metro/underground stops) is known as the NaPTAN database. It records approximately 400,000 bus stops across England, Scotland and Wales, as well as other transport terminals including rail stations and airports. NaPTAN consists of: A standard for identifying and naming …

National Operator Code dataset (NOC)

The National Operator Code dataset (NOC) contains unique national operator codes that link to the local operator codes in the Traveline National Data Set (TNDS) and NextBuses API. A key part of the TNDS, its main purpose is to provide a single controlled list of (public service vehicle) operators and their public names. The NOC …

NeTEx

The multimodal data standard that can be used to transmit bus information including routes and timetables, fares and tickets and real time information.

NextBuses API

An open API from Traveline. The API allows users to access live departure information by stop across Great Britain. Real-time information is provided where it is available and scheduled departures where not. The API is based on the SIRI standard, using the SIRI-SM function through a request/response communication mechanism. SIRI is an XML protocol that …

NPTG (National Public Transport Gazetteer)

The NPTG is closely associated with the NaPTAN dataset and contains details of every city, town, village and suburb in Great Britain. This dataset is based on usage of names, rather than legal definitions and so includes local informal names for places as well as their official names. As a topographic database of towns and …

O

Open Data

Open data is data that has been made available to the public for personal, educational or commercial use. It is usually released under an open data license, such as the Open Government License Version 3.0. Many public transport operators release their data as open data. Certain datasets must be released to the public under UK …

Open Graph Tags

Open Graph is a technology first introduced by Facebook in 2010 that allows integration between Facebook and its user data, and a website. By integrating Open Graph meta tags into the content of your pages, you can identify which elements of your page you want to show when someone shares your page.

Open Source

Open source is a term that originally referred to open source software (OSS). Open source software is code that is designed to be publicly accessible—anyone can see, modify, and distribute the code as they see fit. Open source software is developed in a decentralized and collaborative way, relying on peer review and community production. Open …

P

PBS (Public Bike Share)

Bike share can be broadly defined as any setting where bicycles are pooled for multiple users. Models include Public Bike Share (PBS) – self-service on-street docked or dockless stations – workplace pool bikes, train/bus station hubs, loans, lockers and peer to peer sharing. PBS schemes often make their bike and bay/dock locations available as a public API. …

PCI DSS (Payment Card Industry Data Security Standard)

PCI is an industry standard designed to make it safer to use credit cards online by making sure that business collecting credit card data transmit and store it securely.

S

SERP (Search Engine Results Page)

The list of web pages served to users when they look for something online using a search engine, such as Google. The user enters their search query (using specific terms or phrases known as keywords), upon which the search engine presents them with a SERP.

SIRI (Service Interface for Real Time Information)

In order to make real-time transport information compatible between different systems, several European countries joined efforts to create a standard protocol known as Service Interface for Real Time Information (SIRI). This protocol describes (at length!) how different systems can share real-time passenger information, allowing different suppliers, operators and local authorities to work together without costly …

Software

Software is a program or set of instructions that tells a computer, phone or tablet what to do. Software includes individual applications (web browsers or word processors) as well as system software like operating systems (Microsoft Windows), drivers (software that allows operating systems to communicate with hardware like printers) and utilities (tools like anti-virus programs …

Staging environment

A staging environment is a copy of your production environment (your current live website or app) on a private server. This is a safe place that will allow you to test any changes – major or minor – that you plan on implementing in a secure environment preventing any unexpected errors on your live website …

T

TLS (Transport Layer Security – formerly SSL)

The standard security technology for establishing an encrypted link between a web server and a browser. This link ensures that all data passed between the web server and browsers remain private and integral. TLS is an industry standard and replaced SSL (Secure Sockets Layer) in 1999. SSL (now considered insecure) is still in use as …

TNDS (Traveline National Dataset)

The Traveline National Dataset (TNDS) contains public transport timetables for bus, light rail, tram and ferry services in Great Britain. It does not include national rail or coach services. It is managed by Traveline Information Ltd (TIL) who work with local authorities to bring all public transport timetables into a single dataset. The dataset provides …

TXC (TransXChange)

The UK national standard for exchanging bus schedules and related data. It is used for: the electronic registration of bus routes the Traffic Area Network the exchange of bus routes with other computer systems such as journey planners and vehicle real-time tracking systems. https://www.gov.uk/government/collections/transxchange

V

VPN (Virtual Private Network)

An isolated network of computers using existing infrastructure, such as a Local Area Network (LAN) or Wide Area Network (WAN or Internet) to securely connect to each other. When you use a public WiFi network, for instance, your device and data are theoretically accessible by everyone else on the network. When using a VPN, you’re still …

W

WAF (Web Application Firewall)

A WAF filters, monitors, and blocks HTTP traffic to and from a web application. A WAF is differentiated from a regular firewall in that a WAF is able to filter the content of specific web applications while regular firewalls serve as a safety gate between servers.

X

XML Protocol

The goal of XML Protocol is to develop technologies which allow two or more peers to communicate in a distributed environment, using XML as its encapsulation language.

Y

YAML

A human-readable data-serialization language. It is commonly used for configuration files and in applications where data is being stored or transmitted. YAML is a recursive acronym for “YAML Ain’t Markup Language”.