Riding transit just got way, way, easier. A new website called SpotBus is wildly better than existing online trip planners. For one thing, you can enter destinations like a normal person—“Ballard” or “Ikea” or “ferry” or whatever—not some arcane intersection. It’s so much faster and more intuitive that it feels like giving up your old gimcrack five-disc CD changer for an iPod.

It only works in the Puget Sound area, but there’s no reason something similar couldn’t be devised for other regions.

UPDATE 8/8/07: Two things:

1. Some negative reception at Gristmill and Slog, where this post reappeared, makes me wonder if I didn’t oversell SpotBus a bit. For one thing, SpotBus is inherently limited by the data embedded in Metro’s Trip Planner. Still, SpotBus seems to me superior to Metro’s version.

2. I should have pointed out another—and in some ways better—trip planning service, Bus Monster, which Leigh blogged about here a couple of years ago. (Oddly, Bus Monster doesn’t seem to be working right this second.)