Not sure where this goes, but the Operators forum seems best.
Im wondering if anyone knows the origin of the train numbering systems? Each operating area (e.g. John Holland/NSW Country, ARTC, Sydney Metro, Melbourne Metro, Queensland etc etc etc) has a different one, but they all seem to have a common thread of a letter or number for origin and destination, and then some other numbers for different things (e.g. operator, or day of the week, or departure of the day etc). Why have train numbering systems here developed like this? Its nice to be able to tell certain things about the train from its number, but what other advantages does it give over say the system used by airlines (i.e. QF107 which used to be the flight number from Sydney to New York)? What systems are used in the UK and US (google hasn't helped me all that well here, sorry). Have there been any attempts to 'standardise' the system so that the same system works on all networks (at least on the east coast anyway). Are there limitations from using a zone system for the origin and destination instead of an actual point system?
Feel free to throw in any other comments you think might be interesting related to this topic too.
Thanks in advance.