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List of Ideas (Brainstorm)

Brainstorm: Possible Features

  • Social network
    • see if any of my Facebook friends are nearby, so we can grab a coffee/lunch/etc. (Facebook + GPS + maps a la BuddySuite)
    • tie in with Twitter
    • birthday reminders
    • people you want to avoid ("anti-social network"): if X is logged in and I want to avoid meeting X, the phone can warn me when it looks like our paths are about to cross on campus
    • introductions: does the cute guy/girl over there have any friends in common with me?
  • Campus transportation
    • Bike rentals + Mobility cars
      • availability of bikes/cars in the on-campus lots
      • ad-hoc organization of biking trips/events - tie in with the social network, with Facebook events, etc.
      • see iPhone app from Velopass
    • Metro
      • when will the next metro depart (can store user prefs, such as which direction I usually take, how fast I typically walk, etc.)
      • which is the next metro I can catch, given my current location on campus
  • On-campus navigator
    • Based on GPS location and http://plan.epfl.ch, indicate on a map the nearest bathroom, pay phone, parking lot, etc.
      • Would have to talk to the EPFL plan guys about an API
    • Show in real time the path to find a person/office at EPFL, perhaps plugging into the Google Maps API / maps app
    • Layers-based map of the campus (layers corresponding to ATMs, metro stations, WCs, etc.
    • Scientific map
      • indicate the location of various EPFL lab competencies, based on keywords, images, names and location
      • show the nearest departments (architecture, IC, etc.) overlaid on a map
  • Personalized campus guide
    • if I'm near a new building (e.g., Rolex), allow me to pull up information on that building: history, architect, etc.
    • equivalent of Google goggles (perhaps use Google goggles and update their info with EPFL campus info?)
    • guide to visit/walk through Rolex, based on Google goggles
    • Augmented reality (or mixed reality): display what the phone camera sees on the screen in real time and overlay contextual information on top of it (for instance, it can be used to locate your friends in a crowd, to find a particular room/building, etc.). For a better idea of the concept, see this video
    • save daily route around EPFL - EPFL usually does mobility studies and students can choose to participate and have their movements while at EPFL be saved
      • we could also automatically generate recommendations of "scenic routes" based on what most visitors end up doing
    • can allow visitors to rate the various things they see, and then adjust recommendations based on that (like Lonely Planet)
    • as GPS does not work indoors, we need a special positioning component, which can rely on:
      • the GPS signal, if it's working, or
      • the visible access points, if there is WiFi signal (to distinguish between them - all of them have the "epfl" SSID, but different MAC addresses, link between bssid and locations : http://network.epfl.ch/macadrap/adr_mac_ap.txt), and triangulate the signal from them, based on its strength, or
      • the accelerometer - by integrating the acceleration vector we obtain the velocity, then we integrate again and obtain the position
      • code bar scanning (use http://code.google.com/p/zxing/) of door IDs. (Ask Remi for the csv file of all rooms/barcodes)
  • On-Campus dining
    • average ratings of restaurants => will promote competition, and ultimately lead to better food and lower prices
    • easy access to restaurant menus (depending on current time, automatically bring up lunch, dinner, etc.
    • real-time ratings: students eating menu #1 at restaurant X can rate it, so others know whether to get it or not
    • find out last-minute special deals (e.g., if a restaurant has made too much food, they can advertise it at a lower price)
    • include the roulottes
  • Academic buddy
    • interesting event series in EPFL: GSA Talks, KTN, Job presentations, etc.
    • exam results: as soon as exams are graded, push the student's grade to his/her phone. Also email parents?
    • given a course schedule, create a track for the student that shows her/him how to get to the next class (new students are usually lost on campus)
    • Generate course calendar/schedule automatically based on subscribed courses on is-academia
    • make videos of SwEng and other courses playable on the phone (e.g., while riding the metro)
    • Project management tool: help simplify organizational aspects of group work:
      • Divide the work in tasks among group members (taking into account each member’s strengths and weaknesses?).
      • Monitor the overall progress (using the milestones and deadlines dates) and each member’s progress on its assigned tasks.
      • Facilitate meetings (for example, the app. could find the best time for a meeting given the group members’ timetables)
  • Campus cash
    • replace micropayments, door opening, etc. of the Camipro with an equivalent functionality on the phone (bluetooth/WiFi)
    • uses the "funny pictures with black and white rectangles" to tell who to pay and the amount to pay. m1 stations have this system to identify stations. There is an app that photographs the picture, goes on line to the developer's servers and then forwards you to the appropriate website that tells you when the next metro is coming
    • building the authentication features
    • detection of double spending and forgery of the electronic coin
    • building a customizable service description (e.g., the communication with the door will be different than the one that performs food payments).
    • if authentication is done via WiFi, the service should be able to authenticate the location of the user. This is something like reverse location lookup. The service needs to determine that the user is located in its proximity (e.g., a user needs to stand in front of a door to be able to open it).
  • People's cloud
    • build a distributed cloud based on Android phones
    • run stuff like Fold@home, SETI@home, etc.

Infrastructure

  • provide a server that allows the various campus services to enter data (e.g., the restaurant menus : )

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