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From January 2021, the Federal Office of Energy (FOE)will make available to the general public the application sharedmobility.ch is available to the general public. The interactive map shows the locations and availability of over 20,000 vehicles such as rental bikes, e-scooters & Co in real time. Mobility users and providers have the opportunity to use information and data from the shared mobility platform free of charge for themselves or their own applications.
Shared Mobility – a decisive contribution to multimodal mobility
The offer Shared Mobility is an important part of the overall project of the “Multimodal Mobility” of the Federal Office of Transport FOT. The project was commissioned by the federal government to make it easier for users to combine different means of public transport. In order for companies in the mobility sector to be able to develop economic products and services such as applications, a uniform data basis of the individual providers is a prerequisite.
Shared mobility plays an important role in this industry – this is understood to mean the joint use of vehicles such as cars, bicycles, e-bikes, scooters or even e-scooters. Everyone can access the shared vehicles at any time, depending on their needs and availability. Under the motto “sharing instead of owning”, mobility becomes a service. With the platform sharedmobility.ch, this will enable a more efficient and sustainable overall transport system.
Currently, Shared Mobility users can find vehicles from the following providers: AirBie, Bird, BOND, Carvelo2go, Donkey Republic, edrive carsharing, Mobility, Nextbike, Pick-e-Bike, PubliBike, Rent a Bike, TIER, VOI and Zisch.
Planning, operating and implementing Shared Mobility
The project “Shared Mobility” was launched by the Federal Office of Energy (SFOE) and is run by the EnergieSchweiz programme and shared mobility providers. Our mobile application team at Glue Software Engineering AG, supported by the BI specialists at our subsidiary basis06, takes on the task; connecting data from the providers to the shared mobility platform. As Glue Group, with a broad technical know-how, years of experience in the public transport industry and necessary expertise in data engineering, we can deploy state-of-the-art efficient technologies.
Challenge and solution of the Shared Mobility application
The Federal Office of Energy commissioned us to standardise all data of the Swiss Shared Mobility providers. This data will then be available to all stakeholders of the Shared Mobility platform as well as third-party providers in the industry.
The challenge now was to bring the more than 20 providers with over 8 data formats into a uniform form. Since practically every mobility provider uses its own technologies and formats for its solution, there was a huge data pool of semi-structured data at the beginning. In this state, these were not usable for integration into further applications without extremely high personnel expenditure.
Our specialists at Glue have now cleaned this data according to the GBFS standard using Pentaho Data Integration, MonogDB and other innovative tools. From this, a GeoJSON file was generated that can now be easily integrated into existing websites or applications by data and software engineers.
How does the data preparation work step by step?
- Connect data sources: With the Pentaho Data Integration tool, all data sources are tapped – these can be public APIs as well as APIs with special authentication methods à la OAuth 2.0, etc.
- Cleanse data: The data of the shared mobility providers is now cleaned according to the publicly defined standards of Github “GBFS 2.0”, so that all data has a uniform format.
- Load data: Data is loaded into a NoSQL mongoDB.
- Enable feed access: Using the API’s of the providers, the system now gets access to all feeds. For this step, our solution engineers have selected the relevant data for the SFOE from the feed, these are now forwarded to the next interface.
- Validate data: The relevant data are now checked to see if they comply with the GBFS standard. This means questions like: “Is the station name included? Are station groups or also free-floating providers displayed correctly? Is the timestamp included? etc. will be answered.
- Create database: Successfully validated data is then loaded into a MonogoDB, a (NoSQL) database system. There is now a uniform data master per provider.
- Generate GeoJSON API: The cleansed and validated data is now offered as GeoJSON format via an HTTP interface. The GeoJSON thus generated is then offered on the Swisstopo National Map as a new layer “Sharedmobility”.
API integration of Shared Mobility is available free of charge
For third-party providers who want to integrate Shared Mobility data into their applications, the process has been greatly simplified through API integration. Until now, integrating Shared Mobility offerings into third-party applications always led to very complex, time-consuming or even impossible projects. Thanks to the new API connection, this is now a thing of the past. The GeoJSON file developed by Glue now enables computer scientists to integrate available vehicles from the largest Swiss shared mobility providers into their applications within a few hours. The Swiss Federal Office of Energy makes these files available free of charge to interested companies.
Programmers can find further information on data usage at Gitbub. The shared mobility metadata can be downloaded in the form of a GeoJSON API or XML file at opendata.swiss. If you have any questions about the project, Nico Rohrbach, data project manager at the SFOE, can provide information at any time: email@example.com.
Links for Computer Scientists & Technicians
Where is Shared Mobility used?
Apart from the interactive application on sharedmobility.ch, several companies are already using the API interface. Among them are also some Glue customers who are active in the public transport sector. BERNMOBIL, for example, offers its 50,000 users the benefits of Shared Mobility in its ÖV-Plus app, which was developed by Glue. Bernese people can use the Public Transport Plus app to plan their route with conventional public transport vehicles such as bus, train, boat and now also Shared Mobility. A great added value for people who value a sustainable lifestyle and thus use a combination of different public transport modes every day.
Get to know the ÖV-Plus app now:
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