Fruitful Conversations

Creativity and Aesthetics of Data & AI, master elective, M2.2 (February 2023 – April 2023), coached by Stephan Wensveen and Janet Huang

Collaborated with: Meng Zheng, Renate Voss, Anne Jenster

While most people consider buying and eating fruits in supermarkets as a routine activity, fruits in nature have their own purpose. They serve to spread seeds by attracting animals through color and smell, provide nutrients for seed development [1], and even release ethylene gas to speed up their ripening process in some cases [2]. In this project, we investigated the role of fruits as non-human entities. To explore the more-than-human centered design for human-fruit interaction, we enabled an experience of what fruits “want” through a physical fruit platter, a fruit radio and a digital interface with the help of Artificial Intelligence (AI). The goal was to highlight the subjective nature of fruits in the design process and demonstrate how relationships between humans and fruits can be harmonized through a technological mediator. Our design incorporates a tangible and dynamic environment for fruits, connected to sensors to capture data on human and fruit behavior. Each design element facilitated interactions between humans, data and fruits. Through this posthumanism-inspired design, we aimed to enhance humans’ ability to pay attention to fruits and speculate on an alternative future for fruit communication, while also showcasing the potential of AI in stimulating human-fruit interactions for a more-than-human future.

[1] Henry Howe. 1986. Seed dispersal by fruit-eating birds and mammals. Seed dispersal, 123, 189

[2] Jean-Marc Lelièvre, Alain Latchè, Brian Jones, Mondher Bouzayen, Jean-Claude Pech. 1997. Ethylene and fruit ripening. Physiologia plantarum, 101(4), 727-739.

COCO Dataset for object recognition: Tsung-Yi Lin, et al. 2014. Microsoft coco: Common objects in context. Computer Vision–ECCV 2014: 13th European Conference, Zurich, Switzerland, September 6-12, 2014, Proceedings, Part V 13. Springer International Publishing, 740-755.

Audio source video and background sound exploration screen: music by SoulProdMusic by Pixabay