A Day in the Life of an NYC Taxi Driver

While most New Yorkers spend their time surviving, dodging, or swearing at taxis, Brooklyn’s Chris Whong chose to interact with them a little differently with an interesting project. Whong— a self-professed “urbanite,” cartographer, and data junkie— charted and visualized what it would be like to be an NY taxi for a day.


When you hit the website you are greeted by a box offering a general idea of what you can expect with the forthcoming experience. With the app you can pretty much see where the cab operated, how much money they raked in, and if that motherfucking cabbie who said he was off duty when you tried to get picked up really was… sorry, we just had a moment. The cabs you follow are actually randomly chosen.

Whong sat down with FiveThirtyEight to share the story behind the project:

I was always aware that this data existed because I had seen it presented to me in a class at NYU. And when the TLC’s Twitter showed up I responded with, “Is the data available?” knowing that it wasn’t, but I wanted to hear what they said. Their response was, “You can FOIL it,” which I wasn’t actually expecting. Then it just became an adventure of seeing where this would take me, because I had never actually done a FOIL request before. I’ve heard lots of horror stories about getting back giant reams of paper, or printouts of PDFs, and printouts of charts, or even just them saying they don’t have the data or charging money for it. I have to give the TLC credit; it was relatively painless, despite having to make two trips downtown and provide a brand-new hard drive at personal expense. But overall, they were very responsive and I didn’t spend a lot of time waiting.

The map tracks all of this information for each respective cab for 24 hours, and also includes a box in the upper-right hand corner that tracks fares, passenger count, and tips. It’s pretty wild that dude threw all together for the fuck of it, but dope nonetheless. Head over to “A Day In The Life” to take the app for a spin and make sure you hit up FiveThirtyEight to read the rest of Chadwick Matlin’s interview with the Brooklyn cartographer.

Related Articles


New iPhone App Brings the NYC Subway Map to Life


NYC Man Turns Bedroom Into Dream Arcade


Find Out Which NYC Subway Lines Have the Best Cellphone Service


Latest News

etta-james News

The Best Albums List Gender Battle

Your lists don't define these women
b.j. the chicago kid the listening room Music

New Music From Young RJ and BJ the Chicago Kid, NOVA, and More

The Listening Room (July 26, 2017)
watch the trailer for the upcoming jay-z kanye west documentary Film

A New Documentary Investigates the JAY-Z and Kanye West Rivalry

Real friends, how many of us?
Donald Trump Cartoon News

Trump’s Abrupt Decision on Transgender Military Members Causes Chaos

Our president, the bigot
jay-z's '444' concept is way deeper than we thoguht News

Does JAY-Z’s ‘4:44’ Title Go Deeper Than Anyone Realized?

Let’s take it back to the Standard and the night of the 2014 Met Gala
rick-ross-breakfast-club News

Rick Ross Might Not Be Such A Great Boss

Rozay under fire for ignorant comments on The Breakfast Club
justin bieber cancels 'purpose' tour News

Justin Bieber May Be Quitting Music And We Literally Have God to Thank

The singer’s quest for salvation could save us all
siya-culture-vulture Music

PREMIERE: Siya ft. Troopnastyy “Culture Vulture”

"I felt like it was time to mix Spanish and English and give the fans a new dimension."
medslaus, the new york city rap duo made up by producer slauson malone and rapper medhane sit in the bedroom for mass appeal's latest episode of rhythm roulette Video

Rhythm Roulette: Slauson Malone of Medslaus

An 80s anime soundtrack is one of the golden picks for this episode of Rhythm Roulette
weed News

Maine Dispensary Offers Incentive To Clean Up The Town: Free Weed

Drop off a bag of trash, pick up a bag of kush
graffiti writer daos in the subway meets workers Graffiti

A Graffiti Fail Compilation by DAOS

💩 💩 💩 happens...
Jeff Sessions News

Trump’s Least Favorite Cabinet Member Begins Crackdown on Sanctuary Cities

Is he just trying to make good with his boss?
john mccain dramatically fucked up millions of lives today Features

The Hypocrisy of John McCain

McCain will recover from his surgery courtesy of the very taxpayers whose lives he’s working to ruin
damian-marley-robert-cooper Features

Damian Marley’s Long Road To ‘Stony Hill’

From Jr. Gong to Gongzilla
Portrait of 40oz Van in front of mirrors Hey, You're Cool

Hey, You’re Cool! 40oz Van

"Always keeping it real sets me apart from a lot of people."
corbin-lr Music

New Music from Corbin, Chip Skylark, IAMSU! and more

The Listening Room (July 25, 2017)