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Sometimes I just amuse myself…

November 18, 2003, 11:32 AM

I had my CARR (Case Analysis Research Report) presentation today in PUAD 420. And since all the projects in that class are individual, I’ve been known to embellish my projects somewhat to make them amusing for myself. And I know I’ve mentioned it here before, but my CARR was about the fictional transit agency called the Carinthia Metropolitan Area Transit Authority, otherwise known as CMATA, which is loosely based on the Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority, otherwise known as WMATA, or Metro.

So I did my presentation, and spent hours preparing it. And thus the amusing parts come in. All the characters were named for Metro stations. I had a guy named Farragut West as the chairman of the board, a guy named Dan Loring (after Dunn Loring/Merrifield station) as the general manager, Woodley Park (after Woodley Park-Zoo/Adams Morgan station) as the financial manager, Forrest Glen as the CASHRail Manager (CASH stands for Carinthia Accesses Surrounding ‘Hoods, by the way), Amanda McPherson (after McPherson Square station) as the CASHBus Manager, and the maintenance supervisor was a woman named Franconia Springfield. I also had customers named Addison Rhodes (Addison Road), Naylor Rhone (Naylor Road), Anacostia Rivera (Anacostia), and Ford Totten (Fort Totten).

But where I really amuse myself is with some of the visuals. I introduced what the fundamental problem in the case was (which was capital planning) via two pictures. Here they are:

"Cash for CASHRail" sign

"Better Capital Planning NOW!" sign

What I did is I manipulated two of the photos from the protest photo set from earlier this year. “Cash for CASHRail” (which I thought was rather cute), and “Better Capital Planning NOW!” were the slogans, as you can see.

I also gave the class a quick crash course on floating slabs, with this little doodle that I did and then scanned. It’s a bit simplified, but it works for what I needed:

Oversimplified drawing of WMATA floating slabs, as best as I understood them

Basically, you see a train (a Rohr in this case) sitting on the tracks (dark gray) on top of floating slabs (light gray), sitting on top of the rubber pads (big dark gray things), which insulate the ground from the train to an extent.

All in all, I’m pleased with my little drawing.

Like I said, though, I have fun with this, because otherwise things can get dull rather quickly and that could harm performance.

Web site: Google Search for "Carinthia" and "Transit Authority". I am amused.

Song: Just the chime of the train doors...

Quote: "Please stand clear of the doors! Thank you." I ended the presentation with a recording of Metro's automated "Stand clear" sound.

Categories: JMU, WMATA