Sunday, March 24, 2013

Which floor, please?

We were scheduled to present at the MACUL Conference early in the day, so I set my alarm to go off before sunrise. Once I was completely ready to go, I took some time to look out the hotel window across the Detroit River toward Windsor, Canada. I notice a few lights were already illuminating some offices in the tower to the right. Clearly, some people were getting an early start on their day. And then one of the lights moved, and I realized that it was one of the tower's exterior elevators. As I watched the lights move up and down, several questions came to mind. So I took some video to share the experience with you. (I apologize for the quality.)

Going Down
  • On average, how fast is the elevator going as it descends?
  • Is the rate of speed, as the elevator descends, fairly constant?
Going Up
  • Does the elevator travel slower going up?
  • How long would a trip to the top of the tower take?

At one point, there was a break in the action, and I noticed that the elevator cars stayed at their last location instead of going back to the ground floor. When they were called, it wasn't evident to me what determined which car answered which call.
  • If I was on the ground floor, what would be the average amount of time I would have to wait for a car to respond to my call?
  • What are the chances that a car would be waiting for me if I was on the ground floor? On some other floor?
Some of the questions above could be explored using the videos, but most would require further investigation. It has me wondering about the elevators in Mackinac Hall. Maybe some weekend or night I will conduct a my own experiment. 

1 comment:

  1. I'll be sharing the videos and idea with my class next week. This works perfectly with our rate and time unit. Thanks!