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Inside Track – Track Number Predictions

July 11th, 2014  |  Published in Inside Track, ITFeatureWriteUp, LIRR, NJT

For trains departing NY’s Penn Station, the transit providers have a stated policy of releasing each train’s track number assignment “10-15 minutes prior” to the scheduled departure time. However, that is a guideline…not a guarantee. Some trains are announced just a few minutes in advance. Also, there are instances where the train number is known by the transit providers…but not shared with the commuters.

The Inside Track (Clever Commute’s premium service) changes all that. We use a proprietary algorithm to dynamically predict each track number before it is announced by the transit providers.

When you click-through on history icon (right-most column) for each train, you will see a page with 4 sections: (click to enlarge)


1. Date range selector – Our model is most accurate when it looks at the largest pool (e.g., 60-day) of   historical data.

2. Pie chart – historical track assignments for this train
(it will change as you adjust #1 above)

3. Prediction table – For a given track number, it shows
Location: a list of tracks that this train has used in the selected time period. Our technology eliminates some tracks as options for this train on this day (e.g., Track 3).
– Occurs: the number of times that track has been used by this train
– Historical Percentage: that number expresses as a percent of the sample size
– Probability: the Clever Commute probability of that train being on a given track for this commute

4. Day-by-day track history – track assignment for this train over the selected period


Important things to note 

  • We continue to revise our technology, and the predictions will get better over time. Do not expect 100% accuracy.
  • The stats will change right up until the track is announced.  At that time, the announced track will be set to 100% Probability.
  • Often times, information about eliminated tracks can be just as helpful as the Probability
  • Adjacent tracks matter! One platform serves two tracks. So, feel free to take a peek down the stairs and get a 2-for-1 view!
  • It is your responsibility to be sure you are on the right train. Always verify and listen for official announcements.




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