(Sponsor: RAI – Radiotelevisione Italiana.)

Team: Jason Lipshin (lead), Aurimas Bukauskus, Hannarae Nam, Stella Kim

Advisors: Federico Casalegno (Director, MIT Mobile Experience Lab); Catherine Winfield (Creative Director, MIT Mobile Experience Lab). This project was produced as a collaboration between the MIT Mobile Experience Lab and RAI.

Short Description: SeedMate is a puzzle card game and augmented reality app that teaches beginners how to plant a garden. Building on a month-long ethnographic study conducted with urban gardeners in Italy, SeedMate teaches a gardening technique called “companion planting,” which involves planting certain crops in proximity to each other to increase growth and productivity.

My Role: Ethnographic research (a month long study conducted in Italy with urban farmers), user experience flow (storyboards + journey maps), app wireframing, early interface designs, augmented reality app prototyping (using Pop + Layar), video documentation. Also co-wrote a short book on the project with Federico Casalegno.

*Note: The user experience research report for this project is available upon request (currently under NDA).

Description of Game Rules:

Seedmate is a puzzle card game in which the board is a plot of soil and the playing pieces are biodegradable seed cards. Players place the seed cards in the game on the soil according to companion planting rules and the sunlight and shade requirements of each plant. In order to access information about plant compatibility, players use an augmented reality app on their phone and point it at codes hidden within the cards. Once all cards have been played, the resulting board layout is a complete permaculture garden.

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