#EMPJ Blog 7: Nerding out with Sensors

I generally consider myself to be rather in the know when it comes to what the tech industry is churning out. Sure – I don’t know everything, but I like to think I’m current. But the ease in which you can create custom sensors with relatively inexpensive products online caught me off guard. It didn’t take long for me to start thinking about how these sensors could be used for a fun project around the house and how the sensors could be used to tell a story.

Force Sensitive Resistor - Square
Square Force Sensitive Resistor    

 

Humidity and Temperature Sensor - RHT03
HT03 Humidity and Temperature sensor

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Here’s what I’m thinking: I could use these two sensors to measure attendance/foot traffic at an event and also measure the temperature/humidity to determine if there’s any correlation between weather and an event’s attendance. I would use the RHT03 Humidity and Temperature sensor to measure and record the two attributes. I would then use the Square Force Sensitive Resistor (or several of them) to log foot traffic. Every impression on the pad would be counted as one person entering into the venue. This type of device could be used to verify attendance estimate handouts by public officials, particularly in a situation where it may be in the best interest of the event organizers/venue to inflate attendance records. Think a campaign rally, for example. Maybe even … the inauguration? The device could be used to check attendance reported by the administration. There were several reports that the crowd size at Donald Trump’s Inauguration were inflated.

A field test would basically include testing the device on a smaller scale before implementing it at an actual location. I could install the device at the entrance of the television station and for a day count the number of people entering the building and reference that number against recorded impressions. I could also check the readings of the humidity & temperature sensor and compare them to the readings collected by the weather meter in the station’s garden.

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