Using Raspberry Pi to solve problems at Javra

Raspberry Pi is a small and affordable computer that is capable of doing everything a desktop computer can do.

We’ve come a long way from having a computer the size of a room to the Raspberry Pi; which is a small credit card sized computer costing only $35. Due to it’s small form factor and it’s cost, the use of Raspberry Pi has exploded over the years. People are using it to do all kinds of crazy things from bitcoin mining rig to drone flight controller board. It’s use is virtually unlimited. There are even some Raspberry Pis at the International Space Station (ISS). This should clear your doubt about how awesome this little thing is.

Here at Javra, we’ve also played a lot with the Raspberry Pi. We’ve done a couple of fun projects to solve our office problems. Few of them are

  • Restroom Indicator
  • Server Room Security
  • IoT Gateway

Our office has around 20 Staffs in each floor with a single restroom. This creates a problem of constantly getting up to check if the restroom is unoccupied. You know what they say, “Necessity is the mother of all inventions”. Since this was a really annoying thing to do, we decided to build a indication system which lets us know if the restroom is occupied or not. We hacked our restroom door and added a DIY door sensor which is connected to a Raspberry Pi which reads the door sensors and makes the status available via a simple Web Page.

No matter how secure your network is, if someone gains physical access of the server, you’re doomed!! Well this might be overstated but still you get where I’m going. To solve this problem, we created a system using Passive Infrared sensor to detect, monitor and capture an image using the Raspberry Pi Camera Module and also to email it to selected addresses. Currently we’re working on adding a RFID based entrance system which opens the door only to selected people and log their entry.

The IoT Gateway was a proof of concept project that we did using a Raspberry Pi, some arduinos, NRF24L01 RF modules and couple of sensors. We created a system where the arduino collects sensor data at certain interval and sends the data to the Raspberry Pi over the NRF module. The Raspberry Pi logs the received data into a database. The logged data are then displayed on clean charts using Kendo UI.