Smart office

The project

Our offices are beautiful but we do not deserve any of the credit: Havas Montreal occupies the 3rd floor of 1253 McGill College and welcomes us in their space but Third Bridge contributes to the professional environment in its own way which is that of technologies and mobility. The mobile application Offi and its associated technologies is the archetype of a smart office software: conference rooms booking, lighting control, colleagues localisation and notifications, monitoring of the beer keg… We have relied on the artistic talents of the Havas team for the UI / UX design of Offi and more particularly on the very inspired Claudel Rheault, author of an audacious design with a definite je ne sais quoi.

The challenges

We put a lot of effort into the conception of the project in order to make our application the best possible tool according to our office space. Our first focus was to facilitate the management of conference room reservations which can become a real headache, especially when several companies co-exist on the same premises. We therefore connected the application to the Lotus Notes software used by Havas. This way, rooms can be booked in the application and booking schedules can also be consulted directly. Beacons, small wireless transmitters that use Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE) technology to send a signal to smartphones within reach, have also been installed in each of the rooms to know, in real time, whether the rooms are available or occupied. Thanks to these devices, it is also possible to locate colleagues in real time and, in the long term, more than twenty beacons will be installed in order to flood the floor with bluetooth waves.

Our offices are eco-friendly, hence the lights turn off automatically every 20 minutes after 6:30 pm. This meant that evening workers had to stand up at regular intervals in order to activate the only switch that was responsible for lighting control. An unpardonable loss of time and a perfectly useless physical effort. However, thanks to 3D printing we have produced a Third Bridge labeled enclosure to host a wifi controller, a motor and a mechanical arm. Offi allows this mechanism to be operated over wifi and the lights switched on again without leaving the workstation. In 2017 we are questioning the need to perform tasks that robots can assume for us.

And finally, the installation of a flowmeter on the beer keg. Nothing worse than looking forward to enjoying a beer with colleagues after work only to find an empty barrel. That’s why Offi measures the amount of beer having evacuated the keg and informs its users of the level at all times. A questionable utility but an interesting technical challenge serving an unquestionably unifying theme: cold beer.



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Internet of Things

The Internet of things means the extension of the Internet to physical things. Now, Offi extends the Internet to the physical world via the robotic switch and the flowmeter. The first intervenes mechanically on its environment while the other measures it and transmits the data in real time. The values of such a technology are vast and its usefulness goes far beyond what Offi actually does, but this is a rather convincing exercise: the Internet of the things knows no limits.