Postal services have been increasingly used in the last years. More and more retailers send catalogues and other types of advertisement to their customers at home.
Although the process of sorting this huge amount of mail has been done by machines for many years, the assistance of human workforce is still needed. Hence, errors can happen because of human failure.
The sorting machine needs two separate runs for sorting the mail correctly according to its destination:
In the first run, workers load all the unsorted mail in small batches into the machine which sorts it into an intermediate sorting. The result of the first run is hardly understandable for the postmen. Therefore, a second run is required to sort the mail in the correct order in which it is delivered by postmen. After the second run, the mail is loaded onto trucks and it is brought to the post offices to be distributed.
Our concept focuses on the process between the two machine runs. There, the intermediately sorted batches from the machine’s output have to be placed on wagons according to a number labeled on the batch itself and the wagon.
This process is cumbersome because the worker has to compare each label to ensure the correct placement of the batches.
If more than one batch is misplaced, the machine is unable to sort the mail in the second run correctly and thus the first run has to be repeated which takes at least two hours.
Our approach is to replace the paper labels on the batches with RFID Tags. Therefore, the numbering on the wagons has to be replaced, too, which could be done by using monitors.
These monitors serve two purposes: On the one hand, they can give feedback if the placement of the current batch is done correctly or not. This is achieved by showing intuitive optical signs. If a batch is misplaced, auditory feedback can be additionally be used to call immediate attention to the mistake. On the other hand, monitors could speed up the sorting work by indicating the right placing spot with a sign. This would eliminate the comparison process of the labels and thus save time.
Concept Development 2014 – Gruppe 3 on Vimeo.
POLARES stands for „POLice Anti REdundancy System“. A system developed to improve the daily work of the police by supporting mission documentation and synchronization, coordination and administration. Using pre filled input forms, the police officer can record data easily with full concentration on the person concerned. Furthermore POLARES decreases redundant office work by creating mission reports automatically from the input form, which leads to more efficient police work since wasting time by copying the same data multiple times is abolished.
Besides the data of missions, the database stores relevant informations of public objects like banks, schools or other public buildings. Based on this data, the system organizes the updating process by reminding the responsible persons, which had to be done by the police officer so far.
In the future it might be supposable to add a social app for the organization of work and holiday times among the officers. Also an expansion on other states is desirable.
Presto is a digital prescription service, aimed to make prescriptions easier, more efficient and more secure. It allows prescriptions to be issued on-the-go and reduces red tape.
In essence, presto is similar to the physical prescription, only made digital. Prescriptions are issued in an online database, and can be accesssed by presenting proper identification to pharmacies. It also allows physicians to notify pharmacies of their customers arrival, making preparation easier.
Through Presto, patients don’t need to visit physicians offices anymore to get prescriptions re-issued. The doctor can issue a prescription while on the phone. This will reduce bureaucratic efforts by pharmacies, who have to keep tedious records of prescription medicine sales. Making those records digital will drastically improve workflow.
This approach will provide a more secure prescription system, making fradulent prescriptions a thing of the past. The approach is also highly automatable since many pharmacies are in the process of installing automatic sorting systems for their inventory as we speak. Coupled with the inventory database, this would allow the physician to reserve a specific treatment, setting it aside for quick pick up, all with no work required by the pharmacist.
Munich. KYRA is our new developed feedback system for the BRK. It provides an app to evaluate emergency calls and offers a way for paramedics to cope with psychological pressure.
Each paramedic gets an account for the KYRA app and can comment on emergency calls, evaluate other members of the team or ask for appointments with them or a psychologist.
Headquarters can see the feedback data, sign it off and analyse it to adapt processes and team structures.
Future work will be to include other external action forces such as fire fighters or policemen to the system to gain an overall feedback for each emergency call.
Inspired by our user research at the BRK training facilities we came up with a possible solution for more realistic emergency simulations.
Having defined and rethought our idea last week we now concretized the concept by creating a video prototype.
To emphasize the benefits of A.R.E.S. (abbr. Augmented Reality Emergency Simulator) we decided to compare old fashioned education methods with our innovative simulation tool.
It allows the user to train emergencies within a virtual environment.
The trainee is provided with physical artifacts to interact with; and a pair of glasses to display the virtual setting.
What are the benefits?
- more realistic training exercises
- less expensive than outdoor training
- easy access
- trigger events during simulation from outside
Potential for the future?
Although an implementation is technically possible already, we put our faith in the rapid advance in technoligy.
We assume that within the next few years A.R.E.S. could be implemented creating an even more realistic result.
BuddyGuard fills the existing gap that causes problems during communication and coordination between firemen and the respiratory control unit. These problems can lead to severe difficulties during operations or even cause fatal injuries.
Time and fluent communication are crucial for the success of every operation. BuddyGuard implements possibilities for instant feedback and constant data flow between the firemen on mission and the coordination unit. Via a portable, detachable response module which can be attached to every existing manometer, all important data like remaining oxygen or vital functions are measured and sent immediately to the control tablet.
Additionally the response module helps the firefighter to get accurate feedback about his current vital functions to raise self awareness and ease decision making processes.
An integrated automated alarm system helps both firemen and control unit to recognize dangerous situations, minimize risks and solve problems mentioned above.
The PEA is a wearable device for paramedics that is designed to support quick decision making in emergency situations. It combines a multitude of devices that are already available. Our solution is compact and robust enough to replace the current pager while providing many additional features, such as radio communication or pre-registration of time critical patients. PEA supports the gathering of patient data and allows for a quick assessment of the severity of the emergency. The device is permanently connected to all crucial pieces of equipment and makes communication possible in the field.
In the future, more devices should be replaced with the PEA while retaining its simplicity and ease of use. The goal is to give the paramedics more time to focus on the patient and—more importantly—to facilitate and speed up the communication to the involved stakeholders.
In our previous blog posts were were describing our overall concept by introducing AVALOG. This week we were further finalizing our idea and developed a first prototype. We’ve started with a HTML mockup and improved it in multiple iterations. Finishing by the end of this week we produced a video-prototype which represents AVALOG.
Why is there a need for AVALOG?
There are many observers in the field who support the Bavarian Avalanche Centre with important facts about the avalanche situation of a certain area. Though, this data is not exchanged digitally between both parties. Still, the centre is calling every single observer and asks for the information. The gathered data is then being integrated into the
avalanche report, so that late phone calls lead to stressful situations, as the report has to be published within fixed time frames.
What is AVALOG?
We replace the phone call by providing AVALOG – an application which enables the observer to push the gathered data directly to the Bavarian Avalanche Centre. There’s no need for time consuming phone calls anymore – with AVALOG the observer doesn’t need to wait for the call and the other party in return doesn’t need to phone every single observer. As a result the avalanche report can be published much faster.
How does it work?
From the observer’s perspective:
Once all related data (e.g. snow depth, snow surface, temperature, etc.) are gathered, Karl just fires up AVALOG and enters the necessary information.
From the Bavarian Avalanche Centre’s perspective:
Worker Peter first logs into AVALOG and sees directly that Karl has sent its report.
However AVALOG reminds Peter, that there are still some reports missing. In that case Peter would call candidates, who haven’t sent their reports yet.
What are the benefits?
AVALOG provides the following benefits for the Bavarian Avalanche Centre:
- Improves workflow by parallelized data gathering
- Saves time by replacing the phone call
- Simplifies tasks with automated data highlighting
- Faster publishing of the avalanche report
Chaotic, loud and humorous we worked ourselves through the evaluation and design processes presented by Kalle Kormann-Philipson.
While analyzing our gathered User Data, we decided to enhance the tablets used by the firefighters of the Volunteer Fire Department during their operations. With our custom-designed tablet casing, the delicate devices are protected against water and humidity, heat, dust, chemicals and damage caused by physical force like pressure or falling.
In addition, we provide enhanced battery lifetime, an non-slip case structure and a multi-touch surface which can be operated while wearing heavy duty protection gloves.
We hope to provide a solution which helps firefighters to utilize the benefits of modern devices in their everyday work without having to worry about the hazardous environments harming their equipment. Information-gathering, communication between units and departments, as well as administrating the operation on the scene, is made significantly easier.
After analyzing past week’s interviews we found that most fire stations have a major problem organizing the amount of man power they need. In case of an emergency all firemen get called in by pager and text message. The problem is that often they don’t need that many people. During the week we tried to find a good concept for solving this problem using several methods. The solution we came up with is called readify. It’s an app all firefighters will have on their smartphone. When they get called in, instead of getting a text message, they will get a push notification. After opening the app they will be able to see some information about the alarm as well as who’s already at the station and who’s on the way there. They’ll also be able to accept or decline. When arriving at the station the app will automatically sign the user in using geo fences. This way there won’t be any situations where a hundred firefighters try to get a cat off a tree.