Getting Started - How does BlueNote Lights work?
Start with only what you need.
There are several times in the day when Jenny is ready for Sam. Instead of trying to figure out where Sam is, she would like to be able to communicate this phrase to make sure that Sam comes to her:
When Jenny needs Sam, she can press a single BlueNote button, which will make it light up. This is why we call this button a Light. And if Jenny isn't ready for Sam, this Light will be Off. When this light is active, the corresponding button lights up in the same manner on every computer or tablet where BlueNote Lights is installed:
In other words, all users are able to view this same button, and are able to view whether or not it is turned on or off. So for all the times when Jenny is not ready for Sam, this light will be available, but it will be turned off.
Begin to think of others.
Let's now add a second light. Amy also needs Sam several times per day, so she would also like to be able to press a button with these similar words:
Amy's light button works exactly like Jenny's. When she is ready for Sam she will turn it on, and when she doesn't need Sam, the button will be off. These two buttons begin to form a pattern, called a Light Panel. Lights start out Green the moment each one is turned On, and they change back to grey when they turn Off. We can see by the pattern below that only Amy is ready for Sam at this moment.
Because several people may need Sam at the same time, at the moment that a light button is turned on, a timer is started. This timer makes it possible for Sam to know whether Amy or Jenny was ready first. As time elapses, the color changes from Green to Orange, and eventually to Red. In this illustration, Jenny has been waiting for Sam for 4 minutes, while Amy has been waiting for 1 minute. The times when every Light ages can be changed to make sure that they are appropriate for each type of notification timer.
When Jenny is no longer waiting for Sam, this light button can be turned off, ending the timer, which means that there's now only one other light button on for Sam to manage.
Reduce repetition by combining multiple buttons.
Now, let's say that there are occasions where both Jenny and Amy may be ready for Kim instead of Sam. They could have four Light buttons - one each for Sam, and one for Kim, like this:
But if they only need Sam OR Kim, and never both at the same time, instead Jenny and Amy can each have only one Light, and then select the second part of the message inside. Watch how the Light below is called "Jenny is:" and then the user selects the action. Once the action is selected, the Light turns on with both pieces of information, and can now include a color tag, which in this example is purple.
Change the context to make Lights more useful.
Maybe Jenny would like Sam and Kim to come to a room, instead of to just her name. After all, Jenny could be in another part of the office, so it might be confusing for Sam and Kim to find her. We'll also add a few more rooms as well, as represented by four other Room lights in the image below. Notice that only Jenny's Room light is turned On, which lets everyone in the office see that her room is the only one that needs attention at the moment:
Include everyone and get their attention quickly.
When several rooms in the office needs different types of attention at the same time, sharing everyone's information in an organized manner makes it possible to know which button to respond to first. Everyone in the organization has the same information, in the same pattern. All users will view the alerts as a grid of Lights on the Light panel from any computer. In this example, 'Exam Room 4: Room Needs Cleaning' has been waiting longer than 'Jenny's Room: Ready for Kim', and so therefore may be a higher priority.
Users do not always have to keep the Light Panel on top. This is because visual interruptions will appear over their other screens in the form of popups. Notice that the two Lights that are active in the previous image appear in the lower right-hand corner of the computer monitor. This lets users know that these two Lights have been turned on, even when using other programs.
And when they are not looking directly at a computer or device, a series of tones play throughout the office to get their attention in a way that doesn't interfere with anything else going on.
Take it for a test drive.
Once the BlueNote Lights app has been installed on every computer, here's how Jenny and Sam would be able to communicate very quickly, without having to log into a computer, inside the framework built in this example.
Jenny is ready for Sam, so she clicks the corresponding Light and chooses "Ready for Sam." Jenny can do this from any computer in the office.
Two interruption tones play, indicating that Jenny's Room is ready for Sam.
If the Light Panel is not visible, Sam glances over and sees a notification pop up on the screen that confirms what was heard.
Jenny turns the light Off when Sam comes to Jenny, indicating that this communication has been completed.
There are many more types of notifications that can be created beyond simply summoning a person to a room. Follow the Related Articles below to get started with sending messages to individual computers, adding different light types, and choosing an Example Code for the size of your office instead of having to build everything from scratch.