When we all go to the library, especially in groups, we spend a long time finding open seats. We may not be able to find enough seats on an entire floor, and so we spend time traveling throughout the library searching for space. To optimize the time spent at the library for working, we propose a way for students to know not only how many seats are available in the library, but the locations of available seats. In addition, students with disabilities may have trouble finding suitable seating options. Our plan is to design an app that allows people to easily see which and where seats are available and accessible for each student's different needs.

What it does

We would put pressure sensors on the legs of chairs and sofas to determine if they’re occupied. If they are, it will send a signal to our app, and show its unavailability. Chairs and tables have Bluetooth low energy connections, so moving a chair to another table will connect the chair to that table. This connection can show the location of chairs relative to the tables, which stay still. In addition to the app, the library will have an interactive TV screen with a map showing the availability of seats on each floor.

Challenges we ran into

We came up with many methods to count people who enter and leave floors. Examples included turnstiles, pressure sensors when walking through entrances, and swiping the student ID to open a gate. We finally decided on putting pressure sensors on chairs and sofas to determine if they’re occupied because it's the most practical and accurate option.

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