An app cooked up by a software developer in his free time and quietly released last month is making it easier for iPhone-carrying bus riders to get around Detroit.

Stop313, available for free in the iTunes store, determines a user's location and then shows arrival times from nearby bus routes, explained developer Evol Mark Johnson. It's great for riders who are might otherwise have to wait for long periods without knowing when their bus will show up -- a frequent problem in the city.

Johnson navigates the city by car. But he said he was struck by the many people he sees waiting for buses when he drives up Woodward Avenue to work in the suburbs.

My wife is from Detroit," Johnson said. "She used to tell me, they used to wait for long hours in the cold for the bus to get there when she was in high school. That kind of stayed with me ... if I were in that situation, I'd want to have to wait the least amount of time."

"I thought was a good project to tackle."

Johnson said he stumbled on Text My Bus, a service developed by Code For America Detroit that allows riders to receive arrival times by text message. The three fellows for the nonprofit that promotes civic engagement worked with the city and Detroit Department of Transportation to make real-time bus information accessible, not only for Text My Bus, but for other developers, like Johnson, to use.

Though he may have been in Detroit for only three years, the Costa Rica native and Compuware employee has 24 years of software development experience under his belt. Johnson worked on his app for just over two months in his free time. He said that hard work wasn't easy, but wasn't "Mission Impossible," either. His next step? Creating a version that works on Android phones. And while Johnson has other possible app ideas for the future, he wants to first make sure Stop313 is running smoothly.

Even though Stop313 is entirely independent of DDOT, it does source all of the bus authority's data, so Johnson cautions riders that a DDOT glitch could result in inaccurate information on his own app.

But he said Text My Bus, which uses the same information, had so far had few problems.

While Johnson and the Text My Bus creators aren't affiliated, their two apps share a common mission and focus. But there are some differences -- Text My Bus was purposely designed to be available to the widest range of people possible, so it relies on simple text messaging. For those who do have a smartphone, Stop313 presents the information in a more user-friendly format. Frequent riders can bookmark the routes they use most often, and users can send feedback.

"As a city we have a set of problems, which technology can really help … Text My Bus and Stop313 are really good examples of how technology can help alleviate problems citizens have," Johnson said.

"One of the things that we as developers [can do] is to see how we can help the city move forward by disseminating information and making it more readily available, and I think that's a very good use of our time."

Also on HuffPost:

Loading Slideshow...
  • Find My iPhone

    An app from Apple that tracks your iPhone's location so that if you ever lose it, or it's stolen, you can log onto iCloud.com and find it quickly. You can <a href="http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/10/13/icloud-find-my-iphone_n_1009425.html">read more about why Find My iPhone is so indispensable here</a>. <a href="http://itunes.apple.com/us/app/find-my-iphone/id376101648?mt=8">Download Find My iPhone Here</a>.

  • Facebook

    The popular social network that you may or may not belong to. <a href="http://itunes.apple.com/us/app/facebook/id284882215?mt=8">Download Facebook here</a>.

  • Twitter

    In the <a href="http://www.readwriteweb.com/archives/what_twitter_looked_like_when_it_was_born_screensh.php">immortal words of Twitter's hilariously outdated first homepage</a>, "You'll never be bored again...E V E R." That might not be totally true, but Twitter is a wonderful way to pass time, connect with like-minded people and complain about airlines. <a href="http://itunes.apple.com/us/app/twitter/id333903271?mt=8">Download Twitter here</a>.

  • Yelp

    Find restaurants and other nearby establishments, complete with user ratings. Now integrated into Apple Maps, though you might have better accuracy within the Yelp app itself. <a href="http://itunes.apple.com/us/app/yelp/id284910350?mt=8">Download Yelp here</a>.

  • MapQuest

    A mapping application that won't give you horrifically bad directions. <a href="http://itunes.apple.com/us/app/mapquest/id316126557?mt=8">Download MapQuest here</a>.

  • Flashlight

    Turns on your rear camera flash -- which is very bright! -- so that you can search the floor of that dark bar for your dropped contact lens (or whatever else people use flashlights for). <a href="http://itunes.apple.com/us/app/flashlight./id285281827?mt=8">Download Flashlight here</a>.

  • Shazam

    Identify songs -- and now television shows -- by holding up your phone to the speaker for a few seconds. <a href="http://itunes.apple.com/us/app/shazam/id284993459?mt=8&ign-mpt=uo%3D2">Download Shazam here</a>.

  • The Huffington Post

    SHOCK: Your favorite news site, at your fingertips. <a href="http://itunes.apple.com/us/app/the-huffington-post/id306621789?mt=8">Download The Huffington Post here</a>.

  • Seamless

    Order takeout or delivery the easy way in several large cities. Makes ordering food so convenient that at the end of the month you'll wonder where all your money went and why there are so many empty styrofoam boxes in your kitchen. From:<a href="http://itunes.apple.com/us/app/seamless-food-delivery-takeout/id381840917?mt=8"> iTunes</a>

  • Venmo

    Split the bill the easy way by paying your friends through this smartphone app. You'll need to convince them to download the app, too: You can do this by never carrying around cash and insisting that you'll Venmo them the money you owe. <a href="http://itunes.apple.com/us/app/venmo/id351727428?mt=8">Download Venmo here</a>.

  • Pocket

    Save webpages on the Internet and read them later, even when you don't have an Internet connection. <a href="http://itunes.apple.com/us/app/pocket-formerly-read-it-later/id309601447?mt=8">Download Pocket here</a>.

  • RunKeeper

    Track your runs, or at least remind yourself daily that you really should be exercising. <a href="http://itunes.apple.com/us/app/runkeeper-track-gps-running/id300235330?mt=8">Download RunKeeper here</a>.

  • Remember The Milk

    Remember The Milk is a simple reminders app that's better than the one Apple has included with iOS 6. It can help you remember -- among other things -- the milk. <a href="http://itunes.apple.com/us/app/remember-the-milk/id293561396?mt=8">Download Remember The Milk here</a>.

  • Photoshop Express

    The camera on the iPhone is good but basic, lacking any on-screen post-photo editing tools. Photoshop Express gives you a free suite to perfect your photos on the iPhone. <a href="http://itunes.apple.com/us/app/adobe-photoshop-express/id331975235?mt=8">Download Photoshop Express here</a>.

  • Foodspotting

    Ostensibly a social network for foodies, Foodspotting is a good way to visually search, by dish, for good restaurant food around you. Don't get caught at a spot with small portions ever again! <a href="http://itunes.apple.com/us/app/foodspotting/id350727118?mt=8">Download Foodspotting here</a>.

  • Onavo Extend

    For those of us who don't have unlimited data plans, watching your megabyte count each month can be essential to avoiding overage charges. Onavo not only monitors your data usage each month; it can also automate certain settings on your iPhone to lower the amount of data you consume in certain applications. <a href="http://itunes.apple.com/us/app/onavo-extend-data-usage-get/id423545287?mt=8">Download Onavo here</a>.

  • GroupMe

    This is another one you have to force your friends to download: GroupMe is a group messaging application that bypasses the need to send texts, which can drastically reduce the cost of your text messaging plan and help you avoid overages. <a href="http://itunes.apple.com/us/app/groupme/id392796698?mt=8">Download GroupMe here</a>.

  • Waze

    A GPS app with a twist: You and your fellow drivers can manually report crashes, stalls, and speed traps ahead. Especially helpful for those in cities, as Waze has a large (and growing) user base of drivers reporting traffic. <a href="http://itunes.apple.com/us/app/waze-social-gps-traffic-gas/id323229106?mt=8">Download Waze here</a>.

  • Pulse

    A beautiful app that pulls in the best of the day's writing into a central location. Clean navigation and and an addictive to keep up with the news (or adorable puppy photos). <a href="http://itunes.apple.com/us/app/pulse-news-for-iphone/id377594176?mt=8">Download Pulse here</a>.