Google Tracking Noise Level and Air Quality at I/O This Week, With Arduino-Based Sensors

May 13, 2013 - Written By Alexander Maxham

Google is doing an experiment at their Developers conference this week. The Google Cloud Platform Developer Relations team posted on their blog today, a plan to gather a bunch of environmental information happening around you as you wander through the Moscone Center this week at Google I/O and seeing all the cool things Google has been working on.

The blog post written by Michael Manoochehri who is a Developer Programs Engineer, outlined their plan to place hundreds of Arduino-based environmental sensors around the conference space to track different variables like temperature, noise levels, humidity, and air quality. All in real-time. This was all based off of a fascination of wanting to know which areas of the conference were the most popular, which is going to make it rather interesting to see how this all pans out.

This might seem a bit creepy, but just like everything else Google does, it might have implications for tracking indoor events or businesses in the future:

Networked sensor technology is in the early stages of revolutionizing business logistics, city planning, and consumer products. We are looking forward to sharing the Data Sensing Lab with Google I/O attendees, because we want to show how using open hardware together with the Google Cloud Platform can make this technology accessible to anyone.

The most interesting part here is that not each dataset collected is interesting, but how they are tired together to tell us about our surroundings:

Our motes will be able to detect fluctuations in noise level, and some will be attached to footstep counters, to understand collective movement around the conference floor.

Be rest assured that none of this data is personally identifiable, but the thought of all the Google I/O attendees collective steps, movements and other ambient output being turned into something usable by Google is quite intriguing to say the least.

So how many of our readers are heading out to San Francisco for Google I/O this year? Let us know in the comments down below.

Source: Google Cloud Platform