The initial version of Room Hunter was an Android mobile app that enabled users to book an available meeting room on-the-fly without accessing GlobalLogic’s calendar app. However, without information on what was actually happening in the room, the app had limited value. This gave rise to the idea of including sensors that could connect users to a new level of information about the meeting rooms. The concept was well-received by Facilities Managers at GlobalLogic, who realized they wouldn’t need to build more meeting rooms if the existing rooms were used more efficiently.
The current version of the app has four main components: mobile app, sensors, cloud platform, and back office portal. The motion sensors combine a PIR sensor and a microphone connected to a Raspberry Pi. The cloud platform uses Apache Kafka, Storm, and Esper to create a highly scalable and rule-based platform to interact with the mobile app API. This robust app not only syncs to corporate calendars such as Google Calendar and Lotus Notes, but it also allows for corporate login using any enterprise authentication method (e.g., LDAP, SAML, OAuth, OAuth2).The proof-of-concept was developed in Argentina over a period of three months through the collective efforts of local UX designers, big data engineers, Java architects, Java developers, and embedded software engineers.
Because Room Hunter makes it very easy for employees to find available meeting rooms, the app has significantly boosted GlobalLogic’s workplace efficiency. In the future, this solution even has the potential to help companies go green. By turning off lights and climate controls when a room is idle, Room Hunter can help actuators reduce an organization’s power consumption—making it more than just a smart way to find a meeting room.