19 Jun 2018

Knock, knock. Could you put Joan on the door, please?

by Joan

”The obvious rule of efficiency is you don’t want to spend more time organizing than it’s worth,” says Daniel Levitin, cognitive psychologist.

“Done,” says Joan, a state-of-the-art meeting room booking system.


Pretty Vacant is a song by the legendary British punk band the Sex Pistols and it has nothing whatsoever to do with booking rooms. Except for the word ‘vacant’. And the concept of anarchy. The term used to describe a state of disorder due to the absence of a regulated system.

Confused? Good. Now you know how millions navigating the corridors and offices of thousands of institutions worldwide feel.

At first glance, reserving a meeting space or checking for vacancy may seem like effortless everyday routines. Any ten-year-old with a basic understanding of etiquette rules can knock on a door and say: “Excuse me, is this room free?” But the phrase has a much darker and annoying side to it than one might think. In fact, it can almost be as disturbing as bursting in and screaming obscenities at the occupants.

Identifying the problem…

Imagine you just popped into a conference room for a quick catch-up with a colleague, a last-minute briefing, or a private chat on your phone. A minute later, someone’s at the door. It’s no one’s fault— they booked the room, you just didn’t know about it. Nonetheless, everyone’s process has been interrupted and time lost.

I’m sure this type of scenario sounds way too familiar, so…

Tired of making excuses or telling people to vacate a room? Is shuffling in and out of places driving you up the wall? Does wasting paper on posted notes and energy on broadcasting information on the intranet feel redundant? Not to sound like a 1950’s commercial, but we have just the thing for you!

…to apply the best solution.

The  name is Joan – the number one multipurpose e-paper device doubling as an interactive door sign. Say what? A Kindle-style robot secretary then? Not quite. Joan is a meeting room booking solution that is ridiculously easy to install, use, and which has been proven to work by helping major international corporations tackle their conference room chaos.

User friendly? Try user loveable.  

To use Joan, all you need is a Wi-Fi connection and a wall. Or a door. Or basically any flat surface you find most convenient. Joan’s elegant, frame-like design and cordless property allows you to place it anywhere. The device’s software then syncs with your existing calendar to display real-time schedule updates and… room booked! Easy peasy.

By reserving a room on the spot via Joan’s touchscreen, you let everyone know when and for how long a meeting will be in progress. That kicks unnecessary interruptions right out the door. Pun most certainly intended. Of course you can also end meetings early or cancel them. This frees up the room and adds an open time slot to the calendar. Another plus is that meeting information and directions to your office can be sent straight to your business partner or client’s email. No mess, no fuss.   

Sustainable? So green, it makes other devices green with envy.

I know what you’re thinking: high-tech gadgetry equals high electric bill. Wrong. Joan devices use 99% less energy than any other room booking solution on the market. In fact, electronic paper screens offer unparalleled energy efficiency, making LED or LCD equivalents seem like SUVs of the IT world. We’re talking about a battery life of up to 12 months. Additionally, and the only property comparable to the aforementioned e-reader, Joan’s display reflects light from the environment, making it glare- and light-pollution-free. 

Safe? Like Fort Knox.

OK, so it’s green, useful, and charming. But is it safe? Glad you asked. Joan, in all its variants, is the safest meeting room booking system in the known universe. Why this is so is partly connected to the device’s unparalleled battery autonomy – a result of simplicity. Not only is there virtually no data stored or processed on the device, attributing to its longevity, the minimum information (e.g. your calendar) that is used is done so by an external server. Meaning that if a shady character were to physically snatch the device off your wall, he would be most disappointed to find nothing worth hacking.

Conclusion: Focus on your meetings, not the when and wheres.

Meeting rooms, official or not, are a precious commodity in any organization. Be it a lecture room at a university, a conference hall at a major insurance company, or a tiny corner kitchen of an up-and-coming local business. They all share those very common problems that come with scheduling and managing meetings. Well, they used to. The only problem that remains now is choosing which color or amusing name to put on your digital door sign.

Thanks to Joan, we don’t have to be spontaneous at the workplace, but can be in ending this blog post on yet another random musical note. This time with the Rolling Stone’s song: Can You Hear Me Knocking? No. Exactly!