Anoushka Garg is a visual and interaction designer bringing a life-lens to design and technology.







 
Speculative Design

02 weeks
CIID, 2017

with
Esther Bretschneider, Matt Visco

guided by
Simone Rebaudengo,
Josh Noble,
Bjorn Karmann


Faavi

A connected and distributed network
of farms specially designed for
farmers at home

How will the growing trend in artificial intelligence affect the future of farming? How will people’s relationship to food and farming change as a result? Can we create an alternative marketplace to big farms and supermarkets?
These were some of the questions that we wanted to explore with faavi.

Faavi allows individuals to grow food from the comfort of their home and sell it online through a community-based marketplace. Using artificial intelligence, faavi analyses the price of a particular crop in real-time and lets the farmer decide the length of the grow. The variation in time changes the quality of the grow, putting forth the decision to maximize profit or the quality on the farmer.






Research
To understand the context at various scales, we visited ØsterGRO (an urban farm), Rokkedysse Strawberry Farm (a large scale farm), Fuglebjerggard (family run organic farm) and a ten hectare wheat farm run by an diligent man named Paul, in Copenhagen.

Our learnings from the visits were validated by our in-depth desk research where we found that the agriculture business is bigger than ever. The industry is rife with technological innovations and increasing automation. Small, independent farms, in contrast, are on the decline as they struggle financially to stay afloat. 


Insights and speculations
While big industry farms are an essential part to sustaining a population of more than 7 billion people, we also found a growing trend in organic urban farms springing up around the world.

There is an increasing curiosity about where our food comes from, how it's produced and how to do so in an ethical and sustainable way. 


Urban farming is one answer to this growing concern, but doesn't scale well. On the flip side, automated vertical farms are emerging as a viable solution to the question of scaled urban farming, but aren't accessible to individual growers. 











The next step

Faavi, with its community-based marketplace, fills this gap in-between; an automated, intelligent farm for the home, and a companion app that facilitates the buying and selling of produce within the community.


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What makes faavi different?

03 key features






How it works

03 steps



Plan the grow

Farmers choose how long they want to incubate their seeds for, based on the AI’s predictions of quality and price on the faavi stock market



Start farming

Using artificial intelligence, the farm will automate processes such as managing water supply, humidity, light, temperature and fertiliser dispension


Harvest & sell

When the set time elapses, the farmer harvests the crops and sell them on the faavi network using a companion app that reaches out to the local neighbourhood





Learnings
I believe, speculating the future gives an interesting lens on where the current trends, innovation and developments could take us, but designing products/ services for this imagined future is rather challenging.  Future-casting requires an acute understanding  of social structures and an ability to spin connections across multiple industries, which was the learning curve we as a team had.  

Figuring the viability of the concept through prototyping was a crucial step and gave the team further ideas for the build. Although the technology and electronics involved in the build were relatively simple, I Future-casting the value of investing sufficient time in building a close to final model before jumping onto the spray-painted-smoothly-sanded-perfectly-joined-final model.

Also, the biggest learning of all was to never use 7 segment displays again. At least not 4 of them together.







© 2018 Anoushka Garg