This Web server runs on one of our 8-faucet controllers!

Our controllers are based on a 486 PC architecture running our own realtime version of the well-known Linux operating system.

Our proprietary process control software ensures a balance of both temperature and flow rate, regardless of usage patterns.

Users will enjoy a nice hot shower, without having to adjust the temperature, or even touch anything at all. Simply step in front of the viewing area, and the shower turns on. Instantly, out comes water at the perfect temperature! Step away, and it turns off. Our process control system ensures that water is circulated in the pipes at the right temperature, even when none of the showers are actually running.

Why a Web-based interface

We decided to use a client/server model for all of our sensors. Each sensor is implemented through Java applets. This permits any level of sophistication desired. While most of our current installations are quite simple (e.g. little interprocess communication), the degree of interprocess and interfixture communication can be controlled remotely over the Internet. This is useful for monitoring usage patterns for generating statistics (e.g. identifying areas of conjestion in the restroom environment). By indentifying areas of possible conjestion, these problems can often be resolved with software. Systems can be reprogrammed to respond to users in slightly different ways, and therefore user behaviour can be modified slightly. Through slight modifications in user behaviour, efficiency and restroom throughput can be increased. For example, the system might detect that, in a row of hand faucets, the furthest one is used excessively during certain times of day. It might be determined that a homeless person is using it for hair washing purposes, especially if it is somewhat hidden from view. Your system can detect this pattern of deviant use, and correct it by adjusting the timing on that particular fixture so that it will time out sooner than the others. This would effectively move that user to another faucet. As you can see, slight changes in system parameters can be used to effect slight changes in user behaviour.

The ultimate in user-satisfaction

In the future, you can imagine the following scenario. A user approaches the entrance to the restrooms. Prior to the user entering far enough to see into the restroom, the lights turn on just before he enters, so that he is not startled by the sudden onset of light, but electricity is still saved by not illuminating an empty restroom. The user approaches a urinal and there is a courtesy flush to freshen the bowl prior to use. After the user urinates and steps away, the urinal flushes automatically. Meanwhile, in anticipation of the user's eventual desire to wash his hands, nice warm water begins to circulate through the lavoratories. By the time the user walks over to one of the lavatories and puts his hands under the faucet, where the water turns on automatically, the water is already at the right temperature, even though it was not running yet. Merely anticipating the user's arrival, warm water has been already circulating in the pipes, before the water is actually switched on. The user is delighted to find the water at just the perfect temperature. Meanwhile, electricity is already flowing through the heating elements in the hand dryer, in anticipation of the blower fan that will soon be activated automatically by the sensors behind the VitriView ceramics. Thus you can see how our intelligent plumbing can monitor patters of behaviour and anticipate the user's actions. In this way, the happiness of the user will be maximized.

Helping the user

Our Java applets allow our restroom fixtures to communicate with each other, and to communicate with remote sites. Whether you want to delight your users with responsive, predictive fixtures, or please your users by keeping the restroom crime-free, you can be sure that everyone will be happier, and your profits will increase. If crime ever does become a problem, our sensors can transmit crime statistics back to your central law enforcement facility. The optical qualities of VitriView ceramics are outstanding, and will provide you with the best greyscale rendition and tonal fidelity possible, even in poor light. If crime is a problem, consider replacing some of your CeramiView tiles with SafetyGlass tiles (from our public safety products devision), which are known for their color rendition. Be sure to white balance your sensors to compensate for the greenish color cast of flourescent lights. As with all video-based machine vision technology, we cannot guarantee accurate color reproduction in the presence of mixed lighting (as when natural daylight entering through windows mixes with fluorescent lights). If crime is a problem in your installation, we recommend our ATW (Auto Tracking White) sensors. Remember that hair colour, eye colour, and even the colour of clothing are important identifiers of those who might, whether through vandalism or recklessness, reduce your profits and the satisfaction of your other users. Rapid aprehension of suspects is important to maintaing a crime-free airport, shopping mall, arena, or other establishment. Drug use will fall, and everyone will be happier, except terrorists, theives, or those engaged in other forms of criminal activity. Our privacy enhancing fixtures ensure that normal users need not be disturbed by police foot patrols into the restroom areas, or by security guards entering simply to make inspections. Thus Aquionics will maintain the cleanliness, safety, security, and privacy of all the occupants in your buildings.