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RightNation.US: New Office; Smart Elevators - RightNation.US

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After 10-years in our downtown Boston location, DaFirm relocated our office about a quarter-mile down Seaport Boulevard this weekend. I know, it sounds sudden, but it's been hell for a few months (don't get me started). The building is a new construction, just a stone's throw away from the Institute of Contemporary Art (ICA), which is open until 9PM on Thursday and Friday, and I'm gonna be all over that.

I'm smitten by the elevators. There are no up/down call buttons, and once you step into the car, there are no floor buttons at all. In the elevator lobby (regardless of floor), you punch in your desired destination, and the system tells you which car will respond to take you there. Let's say I'm on the ground floor and want to go to the eleventh floor; I punch in 1-1 on the keypad and the display says: "car-C". (Six cars, A-F.) Car-C arrives, I step in, the doors close, and it goes all the way to eleven.

Think about it: This is traffic-reactive elevator management. From the user perspective, you don't have to operate the car (or even hold the doors), you just walk in. Yet in the background, it's making the most efficient use of power. It minimizes how often you have to stop at "other floors", and prevents that 4:45PM crowded car that seemingly stops at every floor (the "local")

The downside is that you can't just step into any available car, without previously entering your destination coordinates, and expect it take you where you want to go. This is my third day in the building, and already I've shared a ride with someone who said: "Oops"… twice.

Of course, there are bumps and wrinkles when a firm relocates, and I give kudos to the IT staff because my desktop functionality has been seamless. A new environment can be distracting, exciting, and discomforting, yet the business needs to operate uninterrupted. I think we did this one well.

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