My office and lab are in a fairly new building which has a lot of "automated" features that are supposed to make it more eco-friendly. Lights, shades, windows, doors, all have some element of computer control, which basically means that there is one technician or another here almost daily fixing one of these technological wonders.
Our bathrooms are no different. There is a motion sensor in the middle of the room that turns the lights on when people enter and then turns them off after a certain period without motion. I have no idea what the time setting for turning off the lights is in the bathroom on my floor, but I occasionally find myself on a different floor when I need to use more than just the urinal.
For some unknown reason the motion detector in this bathroom is set to 30 seconds. While I have never been one to require reading material in the bathroom, unless I'm just getting home form a habenaro pepper eating competition, 30 seconds is a tad on the short side to take care of business.
Of course, the motion detector is mounted near the door, with limited range in the direction of the bathroom stall, making a simple arm waving futile for re-illuminating the lights. Instead, one has to make exaggerated flailing motions to engage the small opaque eye on the ceiling. Every. 30. Seconds. The absurdity of sitting on the commode while gesticulating like a rhythmless cheerleader is not lost on me and I can only wonder if the timer was set to such a short length on purpose and scenes from that bathroom are being shown live to a studio audience in Japan.
The departmental retreat is going to be at a ski lodge? Great!
Certainly there have to be other instances of building "conveniences" gone awry. Many things that seem like a good idea on paper turn out to be a ridiculous hassle upon implementation.