Metro Sanctioned iPod Maps


A little birdie pointed us to the swank new Metro-issued iPod Maps, which are tailored for the upcoming events on the Fourth of July (hence the Smithsonian Station being marked as Closed on the maps) and there are different versions for the various Nano/Photo/Video iPods that are on the market. They’ve even put up a (PC-Only) instruction movie for installing the images on the iPod. For the Mac users, I’ve added instructions to this entry in the Extended Entries, with luck, Metro will cotton to doing multiple instructions sets for all computers.

The maps look alright on the iPod screen, but the images themselves could use some real work. The fonts are jaggy and a bit hard to read, and the blue line appears orange through the DC metro area, which is rather a shame and I’ll bet a bit confusing to those who might not be familiar with the system otherwise. Generally, though, glad to see WMATA on the ball!

One question, though, has Smithsonian Station always been closed on the Fourth? I can’t remember…

Instructions for adding the iPod Metro Maps to your iPod, from a Mac. These were made on a Mac using OS X 10.4 and iPhoto ’06. Your mileage may vary, please wear your safety belt.

  1. Download the maps to your Mac
  2. Find the .zip file you downloaded (chances are it’s on your desktop.) and double click it to unpack the maps. WMATA claims you need Stuffit Expander, but the Apple unzip utility did a fine job.
  3. Open iPhoto.
  4. From the File Menu, select Import to Library (or press Apple-I)
  5. Select the WMATA folder that is now on your desktop and click Import…
  6. iPhoto will now create five new Rolls of photos featuring the Metro map.
  7. Select each line (or all the photos) by dragging around the group, or using the shift- or command-click selection methods and click the Plus button in the bottom left hand corner to create an album for them.
  8. Give the album a catchy name like “Metro Maps”
  9. Quit iPhoto
  10. Open iTunes and make sure your iPod is docked, then click the iPod button
  11. Make sure that you’re syncing the new iPhoto album that you’ve just made.
  12. Sync your iPod and you’ll have the maps in your photo albums.

4 Comments so far

  1. Joseph LeBlanc (unregistered) on June 27th, 2006 @ 9:55 pm

    Smithsonian was closed last year, IIRC.

  2. Sarah (unregistered) on June 28th, 2006 @ 9:16 am

    The blue line appears orange, because it reflects the change in service for the 4th of July.

  3. N (unregistered) on June 28th, 2006 @ 9:31 am

    Smithsonian Station is always closed on the 4th. And the blue line through the city always turns into the orange line and then back to Blue at Rosslyn.

  4. KB (unregistered) on June 28th, 2006 @ 11:46 am

    Yes, WMATA changes the color of the lines every year for 4th of July, but why confuse the issue more than it has to be?

    Why not designate the lines as something different than the existing colors? How about calling them the Stars and Stripes lines instead?

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