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From: Apurva Bahadur <>

Subject: Re: Engine drivers and walkie talkies

Date: 29 Jun 1998 10:36:23 -0500


Hi Sachin,

I think 'TVM' is the name of your computer monitor, and 'TVC' is what
SR
will would like to call Trivandrum :) .
Walkie Talkies are a new thing on the IR. Last year I had been to
Madgaon
(MAO), Goa on the Konkan railways and the dump was crawling with walkie
talkies. Even at Pune Jn, anybody who is a somebody carries a walkie
talkie.
Good move - Keeps everyone on their toes and reduces dependency on the
antiquated rotary dial phone at the end of the main line platforms -
the
assistant SM shouting his communiqué right next to a screaming WCG 2 -
to
a much more humane working environment. Lucky Motorola seems to have
provided all the hardware.
I have seen driver to guard to base radio at Nagpur on the NDLS - MAS GT
express, but it was a bulky non portable device. Some special trains
like
Shatabadi and Rajdhani have an internal phone communication between the
front and the rear end. I have also seen KR 0111 Mumbai - Madgaon
Express
via Konkan Railway, being connected from the underguard's cabin to the
WDM2 cab with telephone wire. Whether a thin telephone wire on the
outside
will survive the buffeting and torture of such a long journey is
anybody's
guess. It must be working - they do it everyday. Even if the train
contains
an audible means of communication, the Mumbai Pune Mumbai Shatabdi still
departs by the old fashioned flag, whistle and green lamp. To the best
of my
knowledge, in my section there are no train flagged off by talking into
a
walkie talkie or a telephone. Maybe Viraf (who has footplated a
Shatabdi)
can list the correct flagging off procedure.

Apurva Bahadur

Sachin P Keshavan wrote:

> Hi all,
> During my trip to Bangalore to Thrissur (SR Tvm. Division), I found
out
> that the engine driver of 6526 Island Exp. was having a walkie talkie.
> He also used it to communicate with some one (might be the guard, or
the
> cabin man).
> I found out it strange since, for starting the train, the usuall
> procedure is the guard waving his flag, the driver waving back and the
> train moves. Here nothing of that sort happened. The starter turned
> orange, after the driver said some thing through the set, and the
train
> left.
> Are the walkie talkies used in other divisions. If yes between who.
> Walkie Talkies generally cannot be used for long distance
communication.
> Hope the expereinced foot platers can answer this :-})
> Sachin.
>
> **********************************************************************
> Sachin PK,
> Software Engineer, Intelligent Software Solutions Pvt. Ltd.
> E Mail: sachin_pk@hotmail.email
> Home page: <A HREF="http://209.67.19.99/~sachin_pk">http://209.67.19.99/~sachin_pk</A>
> Telephone: +91-80-3314500
> ----------------------------------------------------------------------
> Ae mere Watan ke logon ..... zara aankh me barlo paani...
> Jo shaheed hue jo unke ... yaad karo kurbani ...
>
> Remembering the brave men of the Indian Armed Forces...
> **********************************************************************
>
> ______________________________________________________
> Get Your Private, Free Email at <A HREF="http://www.hotmail.com">http://www.hotmail.com</A>

From: ranand <>

Subject: Through and sectional carriages

Date: 29 Jun 1998 10:45:52 -0500


I have been following the current thread on sharing of rakes with some
interest. I have been wondering about something else about rakes.

In the past (maybe 20 years ago), many trains such as the
11Dn/12Up Dadar-Madras and the GT expresses used to have a
large number of through carriages for points in Kerla and to Bangalore.
I just realized that I have not seen any listings of through or
sectional
carriages in recent timetables. Are rakes mostly fixed in composition
nowadays? Is the large number of direct trains to many perviously
unserved ones reduce the need for through carriages?

I recall that the 11Dn (towards Madras) would lose almost half its
length
at Arakonam as they were transfered to the 41Dn Kerala express. Due
to all the shunting required, the halt in Arakonam was nearly 30
minutes.

Also were slip coaches ever used in India?

R. Anand

Internet: anand@watson.email
External tel: (914) 784 7054
Notes: Rangachari Anand/Watson/IBM@IBMUS
Tie-line: 863 7054

From: Apurva Bahadur <>

Subject: BG track to Goa via Londa

Date: 29 Jun 1998 11:20:22 -0500


Hi Gang,

The BG alignment (more terms for the FAQ, alignment = route taken by a
permanent way, formation = rake of a train) from Londa to Vasco Goa has
been complete for more than more year but the passenger traffic is yet
to commence. Apparently the BG track built on the old MG permanent way
lacks adequate 'catch sidings'. A 'catch siding' is a steep track on an
upward incline to brake a runaway train. Normally the train is required
to stop at a signal while the facing points are set for the catch
siding. If the train stops for a required number of minutes, then the
points are routed back to the main line and the train resumes its
journey. The MG space for the catch siding is smaller than the BG and
the safety commissioner has disallowed passenger traffic until new
catch sidings are built. Each catch siding will cost Rs. 1 crore (Rs.
10 million) and there is severe cash crunch. However the track has been
cleared for BG goods traffic. Can such an important safety issue be
overlooked ?

Apurva Bahadur

From: Dr. Shirish Yande <>

Subject: Re: Working Timetables

Date: 29 Jun 1998 12:16:48 -0500


Dear Peter,

It was a pleasant surprise to see a prompt response to my e-mail. I sure
would
love to exchange the WTT's with anybody who loves them. I naturally do
not
"sell' them. I would just give them to you if you are so fond of
collecting
them.

I have to see what I have in stock. Please allow me some time to go
through the
old cupboards and I shall let you know what I have.

Shirish Yande

Peter Mosse wrote:

> Dear Dr Yande:
>
> I was very interested in your comments about Working Timetables as,
like
> you, I find them fascinating and very well worth collecting.
>
> I have a small number of old WTT's (pre-IR) from the Indian
Subcontinent
> which I have mainly bought from dealers in the US (I live in New York)
or
> the UK (where I come from originally). However, the only recent WTT's
I
> have are a Northern Railway All Divisions July 1991 (which I got by
showing
> up at the Railway HQ in Delhi and asking for it!) and a Pakistan
Railways
> Passenger WTT October 1997 (which I got on a steam tour in Pakistan in
> January).
>
> Ideally, I would like to build up a complete set of IR WTT's. This is
> probably optimistic, but it's a good goal.
>
> Are you ever able to get spare copies which you do not need for your
own
> collection? If so, I would be happy to purchase these, or swap them
with
> you for spare material I might have if you are interested in foreign
WTT's.
> Please let me know what your interests are.
>
> I hope maybe we can help each other's collections grow !
>
> Best wishes
>
> Peter Mosse
> New York City

From: fca <>

Subject: Re: Time Tables on Internet - READ THIS!! VOLUNTEERS?

Date: 29 Jun 1998 15:20:06 -0500


TIMETABLES ON THE INTERNET

Please do not duplicate work....

I am already >90% completed on the first stage (of two, the second being
train scheduling) of this project.

I already "have" >1,800 stations (all important ones for routing and
scheduling; also tourist and commercial interest ones) and 200 other
"points of interest" (scenic/geographic/historical/contemporary etc.)
along
the lines.... (rivers with long bridges, say). In about one week I will
have completed the set. the data includes a position vector for each
point. The stations include even minor ones which themselves are the
closest to some point of interest,

My sources include a collection of TAAGs, Bradshaws, Murray's Guides,
guide
books (Lonely Planet included), maps, my own travelling notes (over
200,000
km travelled on IR to date). All work to date has been done by myself.

At the data collection stage many many errors in TAAG and also quite a
few
errors in the Bradshaws have been found... I am sure you are not
surprised ;-(

I have already written software that swiftly works out "optimal" routes
(optimal taking several meanings: distance-, time- or even interest- !).
The software runs on a PC. It is fun it working out the shortest track
distance between say Likhapani and KanniyaKumari.... (takes about 1 sec
on
a slow Pentium to find a "good" route and maybe 10-15 secs to find the
"best"). Also it can be made to generate "crazy" routes (how about JAT
to
CST via *exactly* 375 stations?!?

I need some help with checking accuracy of input data and "filling gaps"
(typically, distances between "adjacent" stations; some I have had to
measure manually from the Railway Map of India, or deduce in ways that I
cannot verify externally) and updating for 1997-98 new tracks. *****Any
volunteers, please?***** If you are prepared to put in say 10-20 hrs
over
a few weeks, please do email me directly as well as the irfca.

Kind Regards

Freddy Vachha


*=========================================================*
| 1. Thirteen thirteens are one hundred and seventy nine. |
| 2. Thirteen thirteens is one hundred and seventy nine. |
| 3. None of the above two statements are correct. |
| |
| Q: Are any of the above three statements correct? |
| A: No. Maths is bad on 1 & 2, and "None" is singular. |
*=========================================================*

From: PROTIP.DASGUPTA <>

Subject: Re: Engine drivers and walkie talkies

Date: 29 Jun 1998 20:47:36 -0500


Sachin,
Walkie Talkies have been in operation on Western Railway, Bombay
Division
since the last 2-3 months now. I myself have seen them on the Gujarat
and
Frontier Mails, while leaving Bombay Central Station at night!
Im sure other prestigious trains on WR and other railways have the same
arrangement!
You must be aware of course that all rajdhanis/shatabdis and Konkan
Railway trains on the country have an intercom facility between the
driver
and the gaurd!
Regards,
Bharat Vohra

From: Shrinivas Bhatwadekar <>

Subject: Re: Engine drivers and walkie talkies

Date: 29 Jun 1998 22:59:50 -0500


Hello Protip & Sachin,

Walkie-talkie is in operation on many prestigious trains on WR.
I have seen walkie-talkie in operation on Paschim Exp.

Besides WR is also planning Trunk Mobile Radio communication for all
suburban trains in Mumbai with which it will be possible to
communicate with all motormen & guards on-board from centralized
section controllers.

Regards,

-- SHRINIVAS BHATWADEKAR


We do not see things as they are, we see things as we are.
-- Talmudic Saying



---"PROTIP.DASGUPTA" <protip@giasbmc.email wrote:
>
> Sachin,
> Walkie Talkies have been in operation on Western Railway, Bombay
Division
> since the last 2-3 months now. I myself have seen them on the
Gujarat and
> Frontier Mails, while leaving Bombay Central Station at night!
> Im sure other prestigious trains on WR and other railways have the
same
> arrangement!
> You must be aware of course that all rajdhanis/shatabdis and Konkan
> Railway trains on the country have an intercom facility between the
driver
> and the gaurd!
> Regards,
> Bharat Vohra



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From: VIRAF P.. MULLA <>

Subject: Re: Engine drivers and walkie talkies

Date: 30 Jun 1998 00:39:16 -0500


Hello Gang,


> Besides WR is also planning Trunk Mobile Radio communication for all
> suburban trains in Mumbai with which it will be possible to
> communicate with all motormen & guards on-board from centralized
> section controllers.

I have noticed speakers in some of the rakes on W.Rly. Often one can
hear
talks going on in the cabin - the driver or the guard blissfully unaware
that the switch is on and the commuters listening.

Regards
Viraf

From: Anne O. <>

Subject: rake

Date: 30 Jun 1998 00:55:03 -0500


One more for FAQ rake= ????

From: Sachin P Keshavan <>

Subject: SM ranks and Whistle codes

Date: 30 Jun 1998 01:45:35 -0500


Hi guys,
I heard that some one out here is preparing an FAQ on the IR.
Does it
include a section based on the whistle codes (i.e codes conveyed using
the horns of the engine)? If you don't have them I can help you out. I
have got the full list at my native, but I can tell you some most-heard
whistle codes. For getting the full list, it will take some time.
If the FAQ author is interested he can contact me. And one more
doubt.
I have seen SM having shoulder straps with some emblems kept on it (like

the cops have on their shoulders). Does the IR have any ranking system?
If yes how can they be identified by these emblems?

Bye for now,
Sachin.
PS:- Apoorva, thanks for the Trivandrum Div.code. My home station is
Thrissur or TCR and another nearby station is Punkunnam or PNQ. :-})


**********************************************************************
Sachin PK,
Software Engineer, Intelligent Software Solutions Pvt. Ltd.
E Mail: sachin_pk@hotmail.email
Home page: <A HREF="http://209.67.19.99/~sachin_pk">http://209.67.19.99/~sachin_pk</A>
Telephone: +91-80-3314500
----------------------------------------------------------------------
Ae mere Watan ke logon ..... zara aankh me barlo paani...
Jo shaheed hue jo unke ... yaad karo kurbani ...

Remembering the brave men of the Indian Armed Forces...
**********************************************************************


______________________________________________________
Get Your Private, Free Email at <A HREF="http://www.hotmail.com">http://www.hotmail.com</A>

From: Apurva Bahadur <>

Subject: Re: Through and sectional carriages

Date: 30 Jun 1998 02:22:24 -0500


Hi Anand,

The romantic idea of letting a few coaches off as the trains passes
through
the station is history. I asked my father (who is also a keen train buff
with
a good sense of history) and he has seen B&W films of this ritual being
done
in Britain but has never seen or heard this being done in India. The
process
is just too elitist for the IR.

In India 'Slip coaches' refers to the process of a coach being left
behind,
but only after the train has come to a halt. The process will take more
than
15 minutes, as a fresh BPC (brake power certificate) has to made
certifying to
the driver, the amount of vacuum available in the rear guard's brake.
There are trains which split/amalgamate at a junction. Example: the 6635
Dn
Netravati Exp from Kurla (Mumbai) used to work as one train upto
Shoranur Jn
in Kerala, thereafter one half of the train went as 6635A to Mangalore
and the
rest went as 6635B to Cochin. This trains now runs through Konkan
Railways and
hence does not spilt up at Shoranur.

Apurva Bahadur

ranand@us.email wrote:

> I have been following the current thread on sharing of rakes with some
> interest. I have been wondering about something else about rakes.
>
> In the past (maybe 20 years ago), many trains such as the
> 11Dn/12Up Dadar-Madras and the GT expresses used to have a
> large number of through carriages for points in Kerla and to
Bangalore.
> I just realized that I have not seen any listings of through or
sectional
> carriages in recent timetables. Are rakes mostly fixed in composition
> nowadays? Is the large number of direct trains to many perviously
> unserved ones reduce the need for through carriages?
>
> I recall that the 11Dn (towards Madras) would lose almost half its
length
> at Arakonam as they were transfered to the 41Dn Kerala express. Due
> to all the shunting required, the halt in Arakonam was nearly 30
minutes.
>
> Also were slip coaches ever used in India?
>
> R. Anand
>
> Internet: anand@watson.email
> External tel: (914) 784 7054
> Notes: Rangachari Anand/Watson/IBM@IBMUS
> Tie-line: 863 7054

From: Apurva Bahadur <>

Subject: Re: rake

Date: 30 Jun 1998 02:23:05 -0500


Hi Anne,

What do the Yankees call coupled coaches standing on a track (minus the
loco) - is it not the 'rake' ? (frequently mispronounced as 'Rack').
The term 'formation' refers to the assembled train (perhaps after
freshly done shunting - also known as 'reformation')
While the term 'load' is the engine driver's point of view - what is
hauled behind the coupler of his 'power' is the 'load'.
I need other IRFCA gang's definitions of the words 'rake', 'formation'
and 'load' as well , specially the subtle differences between them.
I am yet to provide the meaning of A, B and C drivers, here goes:

' C grade' driver is a goods driver, the lowest hierarchy of a regular
train driver.
' B grade' driver is a motorman (one who works EMUs and locals)
'A grade' driver is a passenger driver working passenger trains
'A special' driver is the top of the line driver who works only mail or
express trains.

I will soon put up on my site the full course of duty of a Mumbai
division driver, there are many small steps, apprentice fireman - ghat
driver etc. But later.

Apurva Bahadur

Anne O. wrote:

> One more for FAQ rake= ????

From: Apurva Bahadur <>

Subject: Re: SM ranks and Whistle codes

Date: 30 Jun 1998 02:45:31 -0500


Hi Sachin,

My home station is Pune (PA) and the airlines refer to it at PNQ !
Contact Satish Pai <spai@aya.email and send him your
contribution for
the FAQ. It is YOUR FAQ and you must write any relevent piece for it
The team of FAQ composers will be glad to hear from you

Apurva Bahadur

Sachin P Keshavan wrote:

> Hi guys,
> I heard that some one out here is preparing an FAQ on the IR.
Does it
> include a section based on the whistle codes (i.e codes conveyed using
> the horns of the engine)? If you don't have them I can help you out. I
> have got the full list at my native, but I can tell you some
most-heard
> whistle codes. For getting the full list, it will take some time.
> If the FAQ author is interested he can contact me. And one
more doubt.
> I have seen SM having shoulder straps with some emblems kept on it
(like
> the cops have on their shoulders). Does the IR have any ranking
system?
> If yes how can they be identified by these emblems?
>
> Bye for now,
> Sachin.
> PS:- Apoorva, thanks for the Trivandrum Div.code. My home station is
> Thrissur or TCR and another nearby station is Punkunnam or PNQ. :-})
>
> **********************************************************************
> Sachin PK,
> Software Engineer, Intelligent Software Solutions Pvt. Ltd.
> E Mail: sachin_pk@hotmail.email
> Home page: <A HREF="http://209.67.19.99/~sachin_pk">http://209.67.19.99/~sachin_pk</A>
> Telephone: +91-80-3314500
> ----------------------------------------------------------------------
> Ae mere Watan ke logon ..... zara aankh me barlo paani...
> Jo shaheed hue jo unke ... yaad karo kurbani ...
>
> Remembering the brave men of the Indian Armed Forces...
> **********************************************************************
>
> ______________________________________________________
> Get Your Private, Free Email at <A HREF="http://www.hotmail.com">http://www.hotmail.com</A>

From: Shashi Date <>

Subject: Re: Engine drivers and walkie talkies

Date: 30 Jun 1998 03:54:27 -0500


I have read with interest the existence of walkie-talkies by IR staff.
Does someone know or can find out the frequencies/bands used for their
transmissions? Also can someone tell me if it will be legal for me to
bring a walkie-talkies/scanner with me to Inida and use it on my IR
journeies? I am in USA and we visit India once a year. Our preferred
mode of travel in India is the railways. It is fascinating to read all
sorts of information from the fan club members. =Shashi Date. Trumbull,
CT. USA

______________________________________________________
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From: Shrinivas Bhatwadekar <>

Subject: Re: Time Tables on Internet

Date: 30 Jun 1998 04:25:49 -0500


Hi Apporva & Steven,

It's an excellent idea to have the railway time-table on-line & it is
very much need of the hour.On-line time-tables are very useful to
tourists to make their own travel plan without consulting intermediate
persons.

User should enter starting & terminating stations & date of travel.
The system should display the connecting trains, including chageovers.
One can refer to Lufthansa's time-table on the net for the purpose.
This time-table shows all flight connections( including those of other
airlines) between start & destination points.Also one can refer to
Swiss Railways on-line railway time-table.(www.sbb.ch)

========================================================
SHRINIVAS BHATWADEKAR



A billion here, a billion there -- sooner or later it adds up
to real money.
-- Everett Dirksen



---Apurva Bahadur <iti@giaspn01.email wrote:
>
> Hi Steven,
>
> I can scan and possibly OCR the time tables which I have, but shall we
> wait for
> July end or mid August when the new 1998 time tables will be out ? Did
> you have
> manually entering the details in the database in your mind ? It is
> difficult, as
> no one including you have the requisite time.
> I wonder if the CR can be tapped into releasing their database
> electronically (
> I am sure they are edited electronically) which can be put up on a
site
> of their
> own. I have just come to know the PRO of Pune division and I could
have
> a word
> with him on this subject.
> Maybe I can start scanning the pages of 'Trains at a Glance' - the all
> India
> abstract time table which should take care of the broader needs of
many
> rail
> fans and travelers. However the myriad details that the zonal time
> tables
> provide is what we should be aiming for.
> Can anyone on the forum advise me a good OCR software which will
handle
> tables ?
> Also almost all the words (names of the stations etc. ) that the
> software will
> come across will be marked as incorrect, this will have to entered
> manually and
> this is very time consuming.
>
> I will also test scan a few 'Trains at a Glance' pages in a few days
and
> upload
> it to my site.
> Let me know if there are any specific sections that any of you would
> like to
> see.
>
>
> Apurva Bahadur
>
>

_________________________________________________________
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Get your free @yahoo.com address at <A HREF="http://mail.yahoo.com">http://mail.yahoo.com</A>

From: C.L.Zeni <>

Subject: Re: Engine drivers and walkie talkies

Date: 30 Jun 1998 04:28:03 -0500


VIRAF P.. MULLA wrote:
>
> Hello Gang,
>
> > Besides WR is also planning Trunk Mobile Radio communication for all
> > suburban trains in Mumbai with which it will be possible to
> > communicate with all motormen & guards on-board from centralized
> > section controllers.
>
> I have noticed speakers in some of the rakes on W.Rly. Often one can
hear
> talks going on in the cabin - the driver or the guard blissfully
unaware
> that the switch is on and the commuters listening.

This installation of full radios in India can prove to be very useful to
Indian Rwy fans. When railfanning in the US a very useful piece of
equipment to have is a radio scanner, which allows one to eavesdrop on
the radio transmissions between the train crews and the central
dispatcher who is many miles away. Also, in the US the drivers "call
out" each signal's aspect as they pass it, ie, "CSX Train 409, clear
signal, track one, north Selma". If one knows the geography of the
railroad or better yet has an employee timetable, one can determine
where the train is and when it will get to you...
--
Craig Zeni - REPLY TO -->> clzeni at mindspring dot com
<A HREF="http://www.mindspring.com/~clzeni/index.html">http://www.mindspring.com/~clzeni/index.html</A>

Buy a man a beer and he wastes an hour,
Teach a man to brew and he wastes a lifetime.

From: C.L.Zeni <>

Subject: Re: rake

Date: 30 Jun 1998 04:36:12 -0500


Apurva Bahadur wrote:
>
> Hi Anne,
>
> What do the Yankees call coupled coaches standing on a track (minus
the
> loco) - is it not the 'rake' ? (frequently mispronounced as 'Rack').

Term used here is "cut of cars", as in "Couple up to that cut of cars on
Track 10". Rake is not used here in the US at all...
--
Craig Zeni - REPLY TO -->> clzeni at mindspring dot com
<A HREF="http://www.mindspring.com/~clzeni/index.html">http://www.mindspring.com/~clzeni/index.html</A>

Buy a man a beer and he wastes an hour,
Teach a man to brew and he wastes a lifetime.

From: Vivek Prakash <>

Subject: Re: Time Tables on Internet

Date: 30 Jun 1998 06:12:53 -0500


Hi Apurva, Steven, et all
I get massess of email every week requesting info on point-to-point
travel
on IR, prices, etc etc and touristy stuff - especially since I'm at uni
and
my timetables are out of date and desperately in need of reconditioning.
Im
up to around 20 emails per week now with info requests. One gets really
tired of answering so many queries and maintaining a comprehensive site
when
there's so little time available.... so, I've actually been thinking
about
just such a search engine on my site at
<A HREF="http://www.geocities.com/TheTropics/Shores/9770/">http://www.geocities.com/TheTropics/Shores/9770/</A>
Unfortunately, people like me know only very basic html and so we dont
have
the expertise to program search engines and things. I've tried to ask a
number of my net-addicted friends here in NZ, but we haven't got a clue
on
how to go about it...
So I guess this is a clarion call for all who know how to do advanced
net-stuff... your time has come!!
Regards,
Vivek Prakash

Shrinivas Bhatwadekar wrote:

> Hi Apporva & Steven,
>
> It's an excellent idea to have the railway time-table on-line & it is
> very much need of the hour.On-line time-tables are very useful to
> tourists to make their own travel plan without consulting intermediate
> persons.
>
> User should enter starting & terminating stations & date of travel.
> The system should display the connecting trains, including chageovers.
> One can refer to Lufthansa's time-table on the net for the purpose.
> This time-table shows all flight connections( including those of other
> airlines) between start & destination points.Also one can refer to
> Swiss Railways on-line railway time-table.(www.sbb.ch)
>
> ========================================================
> SHRINIVAS BHATWADEKAR
>
> A billion here, a billion there -- sooner or later it adds up
> to real money.
> -- Everett Dirksen
>
> ---Apurva Bahadur <iti@giaspn01.email wrote:
> >
> > Hi Steven,
> >
> > I can scan and possibly OCR the time tables which I have, but shall
we
> > wait for
> > July end or mid August when the new 1998 time tables will be out ?
Did
> > you have
> > manually entering the details in the database in your mind ? It is
> > difficult, as
> > no one including you have the requisite time.
> > I wonder if the CR can be tapped into releasing their database
> > electronically (
> > I am sure they are edited electronically) which can be put up on a
> site
> > of their
> > own. I have just come to know the PRO of Pune division and I could
> have
> > a word
> > with him on this subject.
> > Maybe I can start scanning the pages of 'Trains at a Glance' - the
all
> > India
> > abstract time table which should take care of the broader needs of
> many
> > rail
> > fans and travelers. However the myriad details that the zonal time
> > tables
> > provide is what we should be aiming for.
> > Can anyone on the forum advise me a good OCR software which will
> handle
> > tables ?
> > Also almost all the words (names of the stations etc. ) that the
> > software will
> > come across will be marked as incorrect, this will have to entered
> > manually and
> > this is very time consuming.
> >
> > I will also test scan a few 'Trains at a Glance' pages in a few days
> and
> > upload
> > it to my site.
> > Let me know if there are any specific sections that any of you would
> > like to
> > see.
> >
> >
> > Apurva Bahadur
> >
> >
>
> _________________________________________________________
> DO YOU YAHOO!?
> Get your free @yahoo.com address at <A HREF="http://mail.yahoo.com">http://mail.yahoo.com</A>

From: dheeraj <>

Subject: Time Table on Internet

Date: 30 Jun 1998 06:43:55 -0500



I have been very keenly interested in developing an electronic
time table for indian Railways. Towards that goal, I offered
a BTech Project about 3 years ago. The student developed a
software in which one could give inputs such as starting and
final stations (either full name or their codes), and the
software will find the trains between the two places. It worked
even if there was no direct train, the software would suggest
various connecting options as well. It worked upto 3 connections.
(That is you need to go take 3 different trains to reach the
destination, since it was assumed that you should be able to
reach any place with at most 3 trains.) The software would also
work with spelling mistakes in the city names, it knew about
trains which were not daily, and so on. We hired a typist to
type in the entire "Trains at a Glance." (We did not consider
the smaller stations and trains which do not show up in TG.)

Unfortunately we did this project on HP_UX (HP's version of Unix
machine) since that was the only thing available to us. And we
did not have all the city codes. We let the software be used by
public at large in IIT Kanpur, and received a lot of feedback.
Based on that, we decided to move the software to a PC platform so
that we can distribute it to travel agents and others interested
in running this. We wanted to improve our algorithms for finding
"best" connections. We also wanted to put it on the web, create
some CGI scripts to access it, etc. We even got a company to
offer scholarship to the student who would do these improvements.

But before we could do that, we though we will try to get IR
interested in this software. We invited a lot of IR officials
to come to IIT Kanpur to see the s/w (as I said earlier it was
running on a mainframe HP machine only which was not on the
Internet). Unfortunately nobody showed up, except one person
who had just retired as a member, railway board. He saw the
software, liked it, and setup my meetings in Delhi with some
folks in Railway Board. I also came to know of some persons there
personally. I must have met at least 7 or 8 persons from the level
of member, railway board, executive directors, the person incharge
of all computer-related stuff, and so on. But not a single
person showed any interest in the project. When I asked them for
just a little bit of help in getting the station codes, they were
all uncooperative. They basically felt that I am going to ask for
money later on. They would not believe that there exist people
who are IR fans and who would do a few things like this for free.

After this experience we dropped the project altogether.
The machine on which it worked is no longer there, and
with it the software is also gone.

But after this experience, once I was invited by RDSO, Lucknow
to give a seminar. During my visit there, I mentioned this
story to someone. Interestingly, I was told that CRIS had
developed a similar software 4 or 5 years ago. They had tried
to convince railway board that this software can be used
by places like "International Tourist Help Desk" at New Delhi
Railway Station. Railway Board had rejected their idea, even
though CRIS is under Railway ministry. So if IR can do this
to their own people, I shouldn't have expected any better.

I saw the software and it was very good, nice user interface,
had certain queries which I never thought of while designing
our software, and it was fairly fast. It would even suggest
Indian Airlines flight if you give a city like Srinagar or
Andamans. But it had a totally outdated database of trains.

If someone in Delhi can get this software (source code)
from CRIS it should be easy to get the new train
information typed in, and write a web-based user interface.

-dheeraj
--------------
Dr. Dheeraj Sanghi (0512) 59-7077/7638
(Off)
Dept. of Computer Science & Engineering (0512) 59-8627 (Res)
Indian Institute of Technology (0512) 59-0725/0413
(Fax)
Kanpur - 208 016 (UP), INDIA. dheeraj@iitk.email

From: Apurva Bahadur <>

Subject: Re: Time Tables on Internet

Date: 30 Jun 1998 08:06:52 -0500




Shrinivas Bhatwadekar wrote:

> User should enter starting & terminating stations & date of travel.
> The system should display the connecting trains, including chageovers.
> One can refer to Lufthansa's time-table on the net for the purpose.
> This time-table shows all flight connections( including those of other
> airlines) between start & destination points.Also one can refer to
> Swiss Railways on-line railway time-table.(www.sbb.ch)

I was thinking much simpler stuff - a pdf or such format and allow the
mind
to undertake the adventure of searching that train rather than the
computer.
My HTML is way too limited to think of such an advanced searching
website.
What I can do is scan and OCR the text from the Trains at a Glance. I
tried
OCRing a tabled page with lot of 'non english' words and it works well.
Time
tables of trains from Delhi in a few days.

Apurva Bahadur

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