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Clojure and Heroku Predict Flight Delays 109

murphee writes "Flight delayed again? Should have asked FlightCaster, a new site using statistical analysis to predict the delay of your flight in real-time. What's even better, the services is fully buzzword compliant: it's built with Clojure, distributed with Hadoop, served with Rails, and hosted on Heroku. This interview with one of the FlightCaster developers gives the gory details on architecture, Clojure tips, and your boss a reason to let you have all the multimethods and macros you can eat. Seems like now that O'Reilly's publishing a LISP book, the Age of Parenthesus has come..."
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Clojure and Heroku Predict Flight Delays

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  • Unnecessary (Score:3, Insightful)

    by JohnPetrucci00 ( 1621221 ) on Friday August 21, 2009 @01:13PM (#29148227)
    This is unnecessary because they tell you at the airport if your flight is delayed.
  • by loteck ( 533317 ) on Friday August 21, 2009 @01:16PM (#29148275) Homepage
    Everyone is busy Googling 75% of the terms used in the summary trying to figure out what it even says. Someone in the know care to interpret?
  • by Anonymous Coward on Friday August 21, 2009 @01:25PM (#29148401)

    Yet another website that only works for people in its own country, yet doesn't bother mentioning what country that might be. Sadly, the rest of the world knows this arrogance to be an obvious American trait.

  • by GameMaster ( 148118 ) on Friday August 21, 2009 @01:26PM (#29148411)

    Can someone fill me in on what this would be good for? Since it's statistics based and not, officially, affiliated with the airlines, you can't really expect to use it to arrive at the airport later than officially scheduled (I suppose you could, but there's a good chance that your, particular, flight will buck the statistical averages and will take off sooner than predicted without you). If they worked, directly, with the airlines and got the airlines to guarantee that they wont take off earlier than the statistical model predicts then I could see it being useful but that's never gonna happen because they only care about finishing as many flights per hour as possible.

  • Re:Unnecessary (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Wuhao ( 471511 ) on Friday August 21, 2009 @01:32PM (#29148479)

    They tell you at the airport if your flight is delayed, when the airline actually posts that your flight is delayed. For various reasons, this does not necessarily happen promptly. For example, airlines may hold off announcing a delay until very close to departure, because they haven't ruled out using a different plane than what was scheduled, or because they think it'll be a close enough delay that it's worth keeping everyone at the gate ready to board, or because the information just didn't get posted. Anyone who's ever waited at the gate 10 minutes past departure next to a sign that says "ON TIME" with no plane in sight knows what I'm talking about here.

    Supposedly, this software tries to analyze airport traffic across airlines to try and figure out which flights are going to get delayed by ATC. So, its aim is to predict certain delays before they happen, much less before they make it onto the airport departure and arrivals screens, or the airline websites.

    How well it works, I couldn't tell you.

  • by mandark1967 ( 630856 ) on Friday August 21, 2009 @01:43PM (#29148617) Homepage Journal

    So is the Summary!

    GG K-dawg!

  • by mcmonkey ( 96054 ) on Friday August 21, 2009 @02:01PM (#29148835) Homepage

    Absolutely nothing, huh! Say it again...

    Well, no. You would not use this to decide when to go to the airport for your flight. In that case, you're not interested in likelihoods, you're interested in the specific condition of your flight.

    When you would use this is in the flight booking stage. For example, your itinerary involves connecting flights. You don't to be stuck with hours to kill in the airport between flights, but you also don't want to miss the connection.

    If the schedule says I'll have 30 minutes between flights, what are the odds I miss my connection?

  • by rinoid ( 451982 ) on Friday August 21, 2009 @03:26PM (#29149873)

    I want it to predict whether the doctor will see the patient on time, early, or 10/20/30/40+ minutes late.

  • by omnichad ( 1198475 ) on Friday August 21, 2009 @03:53PM (#29150159) Homepage

    Oh, come on. I'm american, and I agree with GP. If it doesn't support "International," it should at least define the perspective of what defines "International."

  • by DragonWriter ( 970822 ) on Friday August 21, 2009 @04:38PM (#29150671)

    [WIth Practical Common Lisp free & from Apress] O'Reilly might not want to bother...

    Right, because if there is one book available free that addresses a language, there's no reason to bother having any more books covering that language.

"No, no, I don't mind being called the smartest man in the world. I just wish it wasn't this one." -- Adrian Veidt/Ozymandias, WATCHMEN