For the transit nerds and planners:

Chu

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Roughly two years ago, San Francisco-based designer and developer Tiffany Chu lived through the dream scenario for aspiring developers and programmers. After months of work hacking together different programs and slogging through code changes, she and a small team of friends set their ambitious demo program live. On a whim, someone tweeted a link to a few friends. Less than 24 hours later, their project was splashed across the homepages of a dozen tech publications, including Gizmodo and TechCrunch. A write-up on the BBC’s website soon followed.

A few days later, hundreds of emails started arriving from overjoyed users. “This is amazing.” “I want to partner with you.” She said they received literal love letters: “I love what you’re building.”

What indispensable tool had Chu and her colleagues created? A simple drag-and-drop map to plan bus routes.