We've all done it. After a tough day at work or a long night of drinking, the gentle motion of the train rocks you right to sleep, and the next thing you know, you wake up in the sticks. It's a frustrating problem, but one app developer thinks he has the solution: a motion-based alarm clock that wakes you up at your stop.
It's called MetroNap. New York-based Tobias Domhan, a Bitly alum, got the idea for the app after his girlfriend fell asleep on train and ended up on the city's fringes. To use it, you start by putting in the name of your starting station and your destination. The app then uses your smartphone's accelerometer to detect when when the train is moving and when it's standing still. A few seconds before your reach your stop, the alarm will go off saving you from an unintended trip to Coney Island.
It's a great-sounding idea, but one that's not without its limitations. How, for instance, can the app tell if you're actually stopped at a station versus being stopped in a tunnel due to train traffic or the dreaded "on-going investigation" at the next station? MetroNap is also currently available for Android in Google Play and only available in New York City.
All that said, you have to admit that falling asleep and missing your stop is more or less a rite of passage for New Yorkers. It can a be great way to see the city! Or at the very least, you might entertain your fellow passengers when you start to drool on the seats. Then again, you might just piss them off. [MetroNap via FastCoExist]