Farming in your bedroom—Digital Farm midterm project propose

Traditional farming is a process of human interacting with the soil, the sun, the water and the plant. Today, with the development of interacting skills, I want to invent a new interactive way of farming. In this way, no actual environmental factors are needed to interacted with in the farming process. And my project is called: Farming in your bedroom. Below are what technology elements I think I need to prepare for this project and also explain how to farm in your bedroom.

There are three basic elements:


A farmer. Yes, find a farmer, if you want to grow real food in the end. But if you are satisfied with the virtual process of farming and you love the virtual food, you can dismiss this process.

But for me, I think this process is very important. And I got this idea after listening to a guest speaker in Digital Farm class. His name is Roger and he is working on a start up innovation to connect farmer to consumer. He let a consumer pick a farmer and pay the farmer to grow foods for him. The consumer pay the farmer well enough that the farmer does not have the anxiety to support his life and he will be able to plant health food for the consumer.

After listening to his talk, I think that this fair trade is healthy and should be encouraged by the society. But there is something missing: The consumer miss the chance to participate in the farming process.

The way that the consumer can interact with the growing process of his food is actually going to the field to water the plants and working on the soil. I am sure some consumers might want to have this interaction with their future food, but they don’t have time. So to solve this problem, I design this “Farming in your bedroom” interaction project. 8.pic_hd










Ideas for Midterm Project

Moss paint

  • Cardboard, fabric or other media painted with moss paint using lazer cut stencils. These stencils are typical snapchat article titles e.g. “This Candy Changed My Sex Life,” “Glittering Kate In Terror Scare,” “What does Your Ideal Room Say About Your Personality?” The intention of this piece would be for the painted moss text to eventually become overgrown and illegible.


Pot Heads

  • 3D printed hollow heads without the hair that act as planting pots – the hair is whatever you decide to plant. Would be interesting to include facial hair e.g. with moss. When the plant runs out of water (moisture sensor) LEDs turn on in the eyes. Below are some potential designs that could possibly be modified into pots (taken from thingiverse):

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Another option would be to purchase polystyrene heads and cut out the top for the pot and the eyes for the LEDs.

Digital Farm Midterm Project Idea

For my midterm project, I drew inspiration from the garden in a jars you sometimes see in stores. They are fully enclosed structures that allow the plant to grow with little to no input from humans aside from topping up the water every now and then. I wanted to create these for the purpose of cleaning the air. I read in one of the assigned readings about how this company was working on making cleaner air spaces in their offices and figuring out exactly how many plants were necessary per human there and then planning accordingly. I thought that had to be a lot of work, it would be a lot easier to buy prepartitioned amounts of plants and just get more if there are more people as opposed to engineering and entire rig before hand. Here is a diagram of my initial blueprint.


The entire project will be encapsulated inside a large water jug. The bottom layer will be the growth solution for the plants. The next layer up will be the growth medium. I’m still not sure on whether I’d like for the roots to be in the air, or in some medium like rockwool or soil. In air would be cleaner and get the solution to the plants quicker, but having soil would give more of a failure buffer in case there is an issue with water the plants. These layer coverings will be painted a dark color to protect from things like algae or overexposure to light. The next layer up will be the plants themselves. On the outside of the jug, there will be a fan and two holes through the jug, this is for the sake of ventilating the air inside the jug, both to control temperature and also to get the new cleaner air into the outside space. There will be a tube at the top connecting to the reservoir that allows for the user to add new growth solution or water to the jug.

The water solution will be fed to the plants on a timed cycle. There will be a pump in the bottom reservoir connected to an arduino that will start every 15 minutes (number subject to change with testing). The rig will use an ebb and flow system, simply filling up the upper chamber with the roots everytime the pump turns on and then allowing it to drain afterwards. When the pump is turned on, the fan will also turn on to circulate the air within the jug.

As for plant choice, I’m still not sure. I’m leaning towards spider plants and peace lilies for the sake of hardiness while still cleaning the air. Like it was mentioned in class its hard to tell exactly how much air is being purified without precise testing, so for now I just want to make sure the plants don’t die.

Overall, my goal is to make a system that requires as little human interaction as possible. I want for the human to be able to stick the entire rig into a corner and only think about it once every week or two to fill up water and be done with it.  I also want simple scalability. Serving the needs of one versus many shouldn’t become more and more difficult to create a large enough rig to house all the plants, it should just simply be getting a few more water jugs.


Digital Farm: Week 7 Midterm Idea Presentation – Ashley Friedland

My midterm project idea is a touch hating moss water bottle. A water bottle, like the ones from the vending machines, will have moss growing on it. There will be a proximity/touch sensor or a pressure sensor inside the bottle. If someone touches the bottle, the computer will make either an aggressive tone, or actually saw the word “OW”. I want people to think about how a small touch could affect nature. I was really inspired by the grass chairs. I also really liked the idea of a moss wall and all the different, cool things we saw involving moss.
Reusing water bottles in the hydroponics systems was fun, too.
Looking at my plant choice, I chose moss because it can grow on almost anything and I’d like to see if it will grow on plastic. If not, I will work with a paper cup. Moss also has great texture. You want to touch it.
Considering what materials to use, I chose a water bottle because they are thrown out a lot. It would also last a long time. A paper cup would deteriorate way sooner, but it could work for a small amount of time. This could actually help my message.
As for the technological side of the project, my first thought was to have a proximity/touch sensor because I’m very interested in them. However, during the “speed dating”, we conducted in class, I was able to talk to some students who had other good ideas/advice. Sam asked why I wouldn’t use a pressure sensor. That thought just hadn’t crossed my mind. I could definitely work with a pressure sensor. Robert warned me for the pressure sensor to be careful where the person is allowed to touch. He gave me the suggestion of using copper wires for the setup.
I was also asked about a watering system. I do not have a plan for a watering system. My idea was to have this more as an art installation than a plant you would grow. Because of this, I would just mist the moss when needed.
For actually building the project, I plan to have the arduino and wires inside the plastic bottle. It would be ideal if I could get batteries in there as well so the bottle could be free of a computer, however, I’m not sure if I can since the computer would be playing a noise. If need be, the arduino can still sit inside the plastic bottle and just have cords coming out of the bottom of the water bottle. I would get the arduino in by either cutting the bottom off and taping it back on or cutting the top off and taping it back on. I would like to try to put the moss on using the shake to paint the water bottle, but since Dan said he’s had little success with that, I’ll probably try to hot glue the moss and hope it doesn’t melt my bottle or paper cup.
The coding would be relatively simple. It’d just be an if statement. If pressure is on (or hand is close) then make noise, if not, don’t make noise. I need to test the sensors as soon as possible though so I know which sensor to use. Another question brought up during “speed dating” was if the proximity sensor would be able to “ignore” the bottle and moss and only read hand proximity. Again, I’d have to play with the sensor to see if it’s even possible.

Midterm Project

I would like to make upside down pots with a simple irrigation system – so my plants will have a chance to survive the spring break. The pots would be different sized plastic bottles, inside with an extra layer of dark bag so the roots wont get light and could hold the soil from falling out. On top I could put grass in it, so it would be green everywhere. The pump would start working in every 12/24 hours so the soil wouldn’t go dry. If I have time, I could decorate the pots so they would look cute.

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Digital Farm: Hydroponic System

16 March 2017

Partners: Robert & Linda

The system that we decided to create for our hydroponics system was a NFT system. We had all agreed from the start what each of us needed to do in order to create a successful system.


  • old white board: used to be the body of our system.
  • wood: used to support system as legs.
  • 2x pump: since our system was so big we needed another pumps so the water could properly flow.
  • arduino
  • cardboard 2x: the cardboard was used to be able to place pots, in total it could potentially hold ten plates.
  • plastic containers 2x: reservoir for system

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I felt that this project was done very successfully. We had difficulties when the water was leaking down, before that the issue we had was that we needed to get another pump since our system was so big. I felt that this was done very well and there was good communication between us all.

Week 6 Moss Wall

As for this week, we all together are to make a moss wall.

I make this black and white cat picture simply because I just love cats. However, with its grey part, my cat was out of the game in the first place, which I am still sad about.catmosswall

We choose the Girl with Balloon, which I think should be from one famous street artist.

Then we divided into two groups. One group help Dan with fixing the board and draw the shape of the Girl with Balloon, the other group is responsible for clearing the moss. I joined both the groups. We used the projector to get the Girl with Balloon onto the board. We drew the shape with Mark pen. Then the other group was just to take the dirts out of the moss. After drew the shape of the Girl with Balloon on the board, we used hot glue to stick the moss onto the board. It wasn’t that a easy work, because the hot glue generally generate in a slow speed, so you just need to wait until the rule come out then move the gun, and before the glue went dry, sticking moss onto the wall real quick. It took like 5 of us to work at the same time to make this right.







Moss Wall

So we tasked ourselves with creating a moss wall with a picture chosen by the class. My personal picture submission was Snoop Dogg:


Unfortunately he did not win. Instead we chose a Banksy rip off.

We split into two groups.

Group one seperated the moss from other junk that came in the package such as pineneedles and stuff.


Group two projected the image onto the board we used for the wall and traced the image. Then we took the clean moss and super glued it onto the board within the outline.


I am not actually sure if we finished because the class ended before we could finish but if we haven’t it will be done soon. I think the moss wall creates a whole new range of possibilities in the realm of green art and potentially graffiti. I really like it.

Hydroponic System

Partner: Samuel

Goal: Create a Hydroponic system that can support three separate plants, has an initial reservoir that water gets pumped from into a secondary reservoir that houses a moisture sensor to shut off the water flow and delay it for 15 minutes.


So we started by making the large reservoir that gets filled with water. I drilled a hole in the bottom of this plastic gallon container, stuck a tube in it, and hot glued it to create a water output.


Then to create three separate drips we put in three T connectors at points in the tube. At the very end I superglued the tube shut to make no water would escape.


These T connectors dripped into a hanging half water bottle that was supported by zip ties and has holes in the cap on the bottom so it further dripped into a lower half bottle that would house the basket holding the plant. On the bottom of that the water drained into this tube we created with large plastic bottles that was slightly tilted and flowed back into the reservoir.IMG_8143

We then put the pump in the bottom reservoir, connected the electronics, and turned it on.


The final system worked rather well, but I have a few concerns with it, namely the potential for leaves to divert the dripping water, as well as I am not sure the bottles we have would be able to fully support baskets with plants growing inside of them.

Code is attached.

int moistSensor = A0;
int curMoist = 0;
int pump = 3;

void setup() {
  // put your setup code here, to run once:
  pinMode(pump, OUTPUT);

void loop() {
  // put your main code here, to run repeatedly:
  curMoist = analogRead(moistSensor);
  if(curMoist > 600){

Week 7 Project Concept

As for my midterm project, I am quite interested in making a living sculpture object. There are several ideas that I had consider, but in the end I want to make an interesting one, the Trump shoes,  Screen Shot 2017-03-19 at 5.47.06 PM, it looks weird but also somehow cute.

My inspiration of these shoes comes from the new release of Gucci, as shown in the website screenshot below.

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This pair of slipper is widely recognised, however, I would consider it insane to buy a pair of Trump’s hair for 1800$. Somehow I do think this pair of slipper is interesting. So I was thinking why not make one of my own?

There was a time when I happened to be around Long Museum, and I noticed that there are quite a deal of dried grass around westbound, which just looks like a huge exhibition of Trump’s hair. Originally, the Gucci slipper is made of goat hair which is hard o gather. From this, I was inspired that I could well use some grass seeds to make this.

According to recent news, “US President Donald Trump signaled a sharp break on energy and the environment policy Friday, announcing plans to undo climate policies and promote domestic energy development as part of his “America First” agenda.” I also considered some irony elements behind this. The action of growing Trump’s hair is itself an environmentally friendly thing, while the owner of the hair is going against the nature.  By making this pair of shoes, the user is actually stepping on Trump’s head with these policies conducted, which suggests the idea of against the policies.

My idea as for now is to first grow some grass on a slipper and then I would use Arduino and two pressure sensor. I want this pair of shoes to have some interaction with the user. The basic idea would be, when people is wearing it, the pressure sensor would be triggered and I would make the Trump talking play. As we all know, the grass are green when they are alive, and kind of plain gold when it goes dry and die. Actually, when I started this idea, I was struggling between making a real Trump hair, which is some sort of gold style, and grow a bunch of living green grass. However, as I talked with some classmates, I think it would be a good idea to just let the grass die themselves. And as you could see, there’s an irony behind, that when Trump talks too much , the nature is gradually ruined, and I now consider it as a performance art. I mean, if I got the chance, I would definitely take it into a museum and make this whole process last until the day the exhibition closed. Also, Robert offered me a piece of suggestion that maybe I could add some short of heater onto this project. First, I would let the grass seed sprouts surly. Then, with the grass actually begin to grow, I would add a heater to it to faster the process of the death of the grass, which creates more visual impact. I would definitely consider this suggestion once I succeeded in making the grass seeds become real grass.