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Improving The Human Sensor




In the past few months, we’ve dug pretty deeply into the current value (and importance) of “The Human Sensor Network™.” But, as the year comes to an end and we set our sights for 2016, there’s still plenty of reasons to believe that The Human Sensor has room to grow.


Now, for clarity, we’re not talking about “improving” human beings. Instead, we’re simply considering ways in which emerging technology might create a more seamless approach to understanding what tenants want and need from their facility. Below is our “wish list” for 2016 on how to improve the input from a Human Sensor:


More Technological Collaboration —

We’re hopeful that more and more aspects of buildings will become “smart” in the year ahead, so that we—and others like us—can pull those systems online for active, real-time review. By sewing all processes together, we’ll increasingly be able to get a full picture of building health, and to allot resources where they’re needed most. 


Human Sensors are more likely to report, if  digital platforms incentivize through social collaboration and social dashboards as seen in popular networking sites like Facebook and Twitter. 


Prescriptive Preference Fulfillment —

There’s enormous value to dynamic geo-messaging (currently, we employ it to help facility managers pinpoint the exact location of a reported issue). In 2016—or thereafter—we think this tech could be applied even further, with individuals able to “opt in” for sharing their location with a building, and having said building respond automatically based on where they go. For a human sensor, geo-tagging provides the opportunity to heighten overall accuracy, as location reporting eliminates confusion, and improves community awareness.  


For instance, a phone could serve as a ubiquitous occupancy sensor, turning on lights for a section of the building whenever you approach and turning them off as you exit. And, the same goes for climate control, with an individual setting temperature preferences and having the building respond by increasing/lowering settings based on which room they’re in. The applications are endless, and the savings—driven by eliminating wasteful energy expenditures—could be enormous. These automated tools save time for a Human Sensor to collect more vital data, and have greater insights on their surroundings. 


Better Automation —

As more and more sensory data is compiled—and as the efficiency of different solutions is measured—the field should become better at helping recommend (or even automate) action.


If a facility manager receives a report that a pipe has burst, future content management systems might include phone numbers and reviews for nearby plumbing services. Or, if tenants are constantly sending reports about temperate issues in a certain area of the building, perhaps a service automatically develop a troubleshooting list based on the likelihood of its source (i.e. “check nearby window seals for leaks,” and “close stairwell doors,” etc.). Of course, such recommendations could be personalized based on the unique building materials, age, and location of a facility.


As you know, we’re already hard at work on areas like these, and look forward to sharing the progress we’ve made in 2016.


Be sure to subscribe so that you see what we’re unveiling in the months ahead! And make sure that you’re applying all of the principles of a good Human Sensor Network in your buildings!


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