RFID Based OCF Check-In System

It would be cool to have people check in with the opstaff by tagging their Cal1Card instead of having to flash them each time they walk in.

Benefits to Users:

  • Easy check-in, do not have to pull out their IDs everytime they come to the lab.
  • No more stumbling near the exit area, looking for wallet.

Benefits to OCF:

  • opstaff can be free-ed up a bit and thus maybe trained to do other things.
  • This project opens up a possibility to gain more insight into lab usage as the people not using the computers could be accounted for.
    • Even the staff can tag their IDs - as they already do for the door access (side note: we can link this solution with the wall card readers)
    • We can have users tag when they are exiting as well

Implementation

  • This is a solved problem, we just need to implement and integrate with OCF infra
  • Cal1Card can be read easily with a proxy card reader (Jacob’s Hall and CITRUS Invention Lab uses RDR-6081AKU). With the card reader we can read card information when users tag their Cal1Card.
  • With the information read from the card reader, we can check against our ldap to look up whether the user is known to OCF/Campus
    • Specific implementation of this part to be determined but currently we will start asking the new users to input their Cal1Card tag# when they sign up for an OCF account. For the existing users, as we roll out the new Check-In system, we will ask opstaff to manually link the existing accounts and Cal1Card tag# for the users who don’t have that information linked. The check-in system will alert opstaff if the user is unknown as soon as the user tags their Cal1Card.

Steps/Phases - estimated

  • Looking into which information to use from the data read from the card
  • Hardware integration
  • Software integration – with LDAP and etc
  • Test phase
  • Making a finished product putting all the components together
  • Roll out phase/ opstaff training
  • User transition phase

Potential Projects Stemming From This

  • Use the other door near scanner area as a designated exit door (of course people can still exit through the door near opstaff) that people tag themselves out, and have sensors that give negative feedback for entering through that door by loud alarms, red lights flashing and etc.

forgive my grammar, typos and sentence composition

Why do you say that this will allow users to not have to pull out their IDs when they come into the lab? They will still need to take it out to scan in.

I do worry that making opstaffs’ jobs “easier” could lead to a problem where their attention won’t be available when it’s actually needed (kind of like how you can’t have halfway self-driving cars). That is, if opstaff aren’t fully paying attention because the card scanner is doing all the work, will they notice if, for example, someone walks in without a card at all?

If this does end up happening, I’d like to make sure it’ll work without impacting users too much. Having users scan when exiting is an instance of this (though I assume this would be optional anyways). Having users specify a number on their Cal ID when creating an account is, too. In fact I’d argue if that steps is required, we shouldn’t do this at all.

Thanks for the feedback!

Why do you say that this will allow users to not have to pull out their IDs when they come into the lab? They will still need to take it out to scan in.

The beauty of RFID card is that with most people’s wallet the card can get tagged without having to take it out. Of course if you are using RFID blocker like I do, I would have to take card out each time.

I do worry that making opstaffs’ jobs “easier” could lead to a problem where their attention won’t be available when it’s actually needed

I thought the same but don’t really have an answer to that… just like self-driving autos. I do have a backup that was mentioned, having opstaff trained/giving more duties for other things OCF related.

With regards to the scanner, it will make a minute feedback sound for recognizing or not recognizing a user. If a user tag fails or does not tag at all, the opstaff will surely notice - by the feedback sound of failure or sound lack thereof.

If this does end up happening, I’d like to make sure it’ll work without impacting users too much.

With regards to scan when exiting, it is just an idea, also it could be just optional!
I definitely think the step of adding Cal1Card number once while signing up, or having it linked for existing users is low effort, high yield; we can be incorporating Cal1Card data to a future projects. re: printer queue released by cal1card tagging – I think it was discussed in context of remote printing but there are more projects that can benefit from us linking ocf user account with their Cal1Card #.