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B Line PULSE

Halli Brunkella Thiel, Zak Menkel, Joseph King, Gordon Mueller, and Corey Paganucci

RapidRide

A mobile game visualizes daily data from a community of transit riders.

Halli Brunkella Thiel, Zak Menkel, Joseph King, Gordon Mueller, and Corey Paganucci. B Line Pulse, 2012. Mobile app. RapidRide B Line, Bellevue, WA and Redmond, WA. King County Public Art Collection. Photo: Hornall Anderson

Public transit is a communal experience, yet many people turn inward while riding the bus—reading, listening to headphones, gazing out the window. What if strangers sharing a transit experience could somehow share their unspoken interests and feelings?

Created by a team at Hornall Anderson, B LINE PULSE provided an opportunity for riders of King County Metro Transit’s RapidRide B Line to learn about their community and create something together. PULSE offered daily prompts based on weekly themes. Responses—a series of selections on spectrum—became data points, along with their locations, times of day, and more. Together these data points informed a unique visual representation for each rider, which was then plotted alongside those of other riders to create an evolving collective artwork in real time. All data was kept strictly anonymous, but riders could check the “pulse” of their B Line community on a given topic.

Was it a mobile app? A game? Public art? An information graphic? A social experiment? B LINE PULSE intentionally blurred the lines between these mediums to shape an experience reflective of our times. The temporary initiative was meant to shift understanding of public and private, physical and virtual.
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Halli Brunkella Thiel, Zak Menkel, Joseph King, Gordon Mueller, and Corey Paganucci. B Line Pulse, 2012. Mobile app. RapidRide B Line, Bellevue, WA and Redmond, WA. King County Public Art Collection. Photo: Hornall Anderson
Halli Brunkella Thiel, Zak Menkel, Joseph King, Gordon Mueller, and Corey Paganucci. B Line Pulse, 2012. Mobile app. RapidRide B Line, Bellevue, WA and Redmond, WA. King County Public Art Collection. Photo: Hornall Anderson
Halli Brunkella Thiel, Zak Menkel, Joseph King, Gordon Mueller, and Corey Paganucci. B Line Pulse, 2012. Archival Inkjet print. RapidRide B Line, Bellevue, WA and Redmond, WA. King County Public Art Collection. Photo: Hornall Anderson