Soil system concept

So far, the assignments have asked you to create concrete artifacts that engaged with particular issues (e.g., a print that responds to heat; a sensor that measures heat). Shifting now from heat to soil, this exercise asks you to think more broadly:

How can citizens engage with soil quality? What kind of system would support this engagement and how would it be evaluated?

In this assignment you will create a concept for soil sensing system. This means moving beyond one particular sensor, and more broadly thinking about:

  • who would use your system (gardeners, children, general population, etc.)
  • where or how the system would be used (e.g., in someone’s yard or home, across the entire city)
  • what issue it would address (pollution, water retention, biodiversity, general engagement with soil, etc.)
  • how would success be measured (what are the intended outcomes?)

This is a maker assignment, so you must physically make at least some part of the system you envision. The tangible artifact you create could be high-tech or low tech. For instance, if your system concept is a toy for kids that measures soil pH, you might prototype the actual sensor or the physical form it might take on; if your system is a gift economy where people send each other plants grown in their home soil, you might prototype a container or an image capture application that shares the results.

Post your assignment under the “soilsystem” category.

This assignment is worth 5 points
1 point for addressing each of the above questions (who, where/how, what issue, and success metrics)
1 point for prototyping a physical artifact that would be part of your system

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