Thanks to all of you for great suggestions! I'm definitely going to 
check out some of the tools you mentioned - I think it would be a fun 
side project to implement.

On 5/1/2012 3:00 PM, Peter Murray wrote:
 > Sounds like a neat idea. I wonder if you could get electrical 
engineering students to build DIY sensors from kits and make a real 
educational project out of it.

Kevin J. Collins wrote:
 > I just wonder whether you could find one of the programming students 
to actually work on something like for a project. The student would be 
doing it for some type of class credit - but the library might get 
something usable albeit frivolous (until you use it for an evidence 
based effort to get the AC fixed....)

I love this idea! I'm going to look into it.

Stephen McDonald wrote:
 > Hm.  And if you collected and recorded the data for some period of 
time, you might be able to use it to convince Building Services (or 
whoever) to try to fix the problem.

Hope springs eternal...

Ralph LeVan wrote:
 > If this doesn't meet the definition of "Geek the Library", I don't know
what else would.
 > +1 OCLC Approval

Yay! Also, bacon.

Paul Cummins wrote:
 > You could nail digital thermometers up and point webcams at them then 
run that through OCR.
 > ( sorry, I was thinking about what might actually get approved in the 


Michael Friscia wrote:
 > I like the idea. I'd also like to experiment with microphones that 
can detect the noise level in reading rooms so when a student is looking 
for a quiet one, they look at the "heat map" of the reading rooms and 
avoid the ones that are red and go to the quieter light blue ones...

Ooooh, I like that.

Ben "Otter Fan" Florin wrote:
 > How about a just javascript that randomly spits out temperatures
around 70 Fahrenheit? That would cost less and have the knock-on
effect of stifling student dissent.

We've been tossing around the idea of just redirecting the library 
homepage to since that really might meet student desires 
better, thus avoiding dissent. However, some think the Cheezburger 
network is a better choice, and there's a small but vocal contingent 
advocating for

Kyle Banerjee wrote:
 > Technically, I don't think it would be difficult or expensive. But 
given a sufficiently large population, you should expect people with a 
juvenile sense of humor to tamper with the sensors.

Good point. The university had a webcam on the roof of one of the 
buildings here to track the construction of our new CIS/Engineering 
building, and I kept moving its view to the dead cockroach on the nearby 

Maryann Kempthorne wrote:
 > Why not a cardigan checkout?

I have proposed that we have jaguar-print (our mascot) Snuggies 
available for checkout, but thus far my efforts have been for naught.

Julia Bauder wrote:
 > On the one hand, I love the idea of displaying the temperatures to 
students on the Web site ("Too cold on the 60 degree 4th floor? Take a 
break in the 80 degree computer lab in the basement!"), but on the other 
hand, I don't want to discourage them from studying in the library....

Good point!

Thanks, all!

Ellen Knowlton Wilson
Instructional Services Librarian
Room 250, University Library
University of South Alabama
5901 USA Drive North
Mobile, AL 36688
(251) 460-6045
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