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Spanish company develops devices that allow sensorization and monitoring

Office where everything is registered

What time does each worker sit and when does he get up? What tables are being used. What is the degree of occupancy of a room. What doors and windows are open or closed. If the light is on or off. What is the temperature in each place. And also the air quality, humidity and atmospheric pressure. Dozens of sensors coupled to chairs, tables, doors and windows continuously collect information on how workers interact with each object.

Geeksme is a Spanish company that is dedicated to the internet of things (IoT) and has created Universall, a platform designed to be able to sensorize and monitor anything. There is a great opportunity to manufacture devices, sensors that coupled with everyday objects that surround us, allow us to obtain data to understand how we interact with them and make decisions, explains Ángel Sánchez Díaz, co-founder and CEO of the company.

Like Geeksme, other companies and entities are committed to adding sensors to objects to make them intelligent. In 2017 a team of researchers manufactured a device capable of monitoring different objects in the kitchen: from a microwave to a kettle or a paper roll holder. This year Eurecat has presented a label with sensors to verify the contents of a bottle of wine without opening it. Meanwhile, companies such as Apple or Xiaomi market home automation kits to monitor the house and make it smart with motion and door and window opening sensors.

The information collected by different sensors, according to Sánchez, can be useful for both companies and private users: In the case that putting sensors to a chair in which we are sitting, it is useful to understand what our behavior patterns are. If I spend for example more than two hours sitting and, therefore, I should get up for a health issue. Or if it is placed in an office room, so that a company knows the degree of occupation of these spaces and therefore can optimize them.

Its offices in the center of Madrid are the laboratory of what they hope will soon go out to dozens of offices, warehouses, gyms and homes. The company, which is also the architect of a watch that measures the ecological footprint and sexual activity and a mattress that monitors sleep, plans to release its devices for sale later this year. He currently works in several pilots and has already closed some agreements with companies such as Securitas, Nordic Semiconductor or Ilunion. Among the companies interested, according to its founder, there are multinationals who want to monitor the use of their offices to insurers who want to create health and safety products.

One business day a 3D printer works tirelessly in a room in Geeksme's offices. Together with her, José Francisco Sánchez Barrio, the company's design and manufacturing engineer, shapes an accessory for the devices designed by the company. To measure all the mentioned variables, two devices have been developed. The quark, which attaches to everyday objects, is equipped with a 9D sensor consisting of an accelerometer, a gyroscope, a compass and a temperature sensor. You can measure the interaction with chairs, tables, doors, drawers, windows or even clothes. That is, how long someone sits in a chair, if it interacts with objects or if a door is open or closed.

All that information is transmitted to another device called Omega. It is a communication base capable of interacting with all quarks arranged in a space between 20 and 40 meters. In addition to transmitting information to the cloud through Narrowband-IoT, it measures environmental variables such as temperature, humidity, atmospheric pressure, air quality and even the amount of light.

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