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Generic Confusion

When you leave, my blog just fades to grey
Nu ma nu ma iei, nu ma nu ma nu ma iei


News? Check. Politics? Check. Music? Check. Random thoughts about life? Check. Readership? Ummm.... let me get back to you on that. Updated when I feel like I have something to say, and remember to post it.

Tuesday, September 07, 2004

Question

I'm at a loss on how to simply title this post, so let me describe it. This question relates to a problem that is similar to something I saw in operations research classes, about managing flows of people. It's a question requiring some logic, some knowledge of how people act, and while there's probably a discipline that deals with questions like these, I don't know its name.

How hard is it to program elevators to handle traffic flow in heavy traffic situations? Take for example a hotel with a bank of five elevators, to handle around 20 floors of rooms and 4 public floors (lobby and meeting rooms)? When the system doesn't work, it quickly collapses, as people start pushing the up button (when they want to go down) and down button (when they want to go up), as they try to just get on the elevator. This undoubtedly confuses the computer programming. Furthermore, elevators fill up with people who shouldn't be on them, if the system worked, and that further hurts people's abilities to use the elevators.

This relates to an earlier rant. If a stairway were in a public and prominent place, more people would use it, helping the elevator system.

Most people reading this post will think it is a random rant, but there are thousands of people who can figure out exactly where I was this past weekend based on this post.

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