Now that the Carnaval is over, and I am getting back to the busy life, I reminded myself that depending on the time I arrive at work, there might not be parking spot available. This is due that at my workplace, the Federal University of ABC in Santo André is being built. So is there a way to find these difficult moments (without experiencing them)?
Every term the University releases publicly a list of students enrolled in each course. So maybe I can use this "big" data and extract how many students are in each course, and therefore build a time table. The hypothesis here is that the "rush hour" moment would be the gradient of the number of students at the Santo André campus.
But first, how many class does each student pick during this semester? Note that in this particular university there is no upper limit restriction as to how many you can choose. Running a quick check in Mathematica, I do a frequency count of each student-ID number, the result is in the histogram below.
On the vertical axis we have the number of students (the specific number is highlighted above), and on the horizontal axis we have the number of courses. A significant fraction chooses 5 course per term, and there are two daredevil students that are enrolled in 10 (39 and 28 credits respectively)!!!
So now, I'll process the course file for Santo André campus, and select all the courses with different time slots during the week. For each day of the week we have the plot below,
On the vertical axis the least number of students that should be at this campus if they are attending class. On the horizontal axis the time each class starts, lasting one hour, therefore the last class ends at 23:00. From this plot, the best morning for parking are on the Thursdays (today), the best evenings are on Mondays, and the best nights on Fridays. And unfortunately there is no particular day of the week (for classes starting at 18) that would yield a significantly less steep curve.
Guess that's all for now. Just some quick thoughts, maybe this timetable could be useful for: strategic allocation of the school bus usage; to establish the best time for routine cleaning; when is the best time for an important seminar; and finally (if needed) to reallocate future classes so that resources could be evenly utilized.