Tuesday, July 11, 2006

A Tap Is Faster Than A Swipe When Writing As Well

The MTA is launching a new program that allows riders at certain stations to tap their way into our beloved subway system, instead of swiping.

When I first saw this program, I thought it was something where you'd have a sensor in your pocket, and it could be read anywhere, i.e. you didn't have to do anything, just walk through like EZ-Pass, or a metal detector. But now that I know they're counting on the difference between a tap of a card and the swipe of a card to reduce commute time, well shoot, I might just go ahead and take a second shower before work. Maybe catch a movie. Start a blog. The possibilities are endless.

And certainly if you were trying to escape the New York version of Leatherface in The Subway Power-Saw Massacre, you would be quite appreciative of those precious additional nano-seconds.

I happen to use Citibank and the 4,5,6 line, which are current requirements for smartcard use, so I should get to try this out soon and figure out exactly how much time we'll be saving. Both Citibank and the MTA are renowned for their cost-effective efficiency, so I'll probably bring an egg-timer or build a sundial (yes, underground) to measure the difference.

Faster Than A Tapping Smart Card
'Leatherface Light' Terrorizes Subway Riders [TAN]

I thought the program was one where you buy a special card, one that you tap instead of swipe, and thus my tongue-in-cheekery above. Now having been out and seen the system, it is speedier, essentially it allows you to use your debit or credit card right at the turnstile. So speed is definitely a plus, security on the other hand is another question ... except for me.


  1. I live along the G line, so I should get this program around the time Star Trek becomes a reality.

  2. Anonymous7/12/2006

    I used it. No problems thus far. the security issue could make you nervous.


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