07. Project Proposal [Meg Davis]


More than 60 million people in the U.S. struggle with obesity.  In “Obesity and the Environment: Where do we go from here?”, researchers suggest that if each person in America cut out 100 calories from their diet, and we could evenly distribute calories across people, we could prevent weight gain in most of the population. Portion control is a key component to weight loss.


NutrientMat is a placemat that makes people aware of their nutrition choices and can help people set and meet nutrition goals.  People can put food on their plate, which is on NutrientMat, in certain sections according to food groups.  NutrientMat can then detect and track how much of each food group the person has eaten.  NutrientMat reflects this information back to the person eating there by displaying different thicknesses of different stripes of color.  These stripes change dynamically through the day as the person eats more meals.  In this way, NutrientMat serves as an ambient display of food health habits.

The default setting for NutrientMat would be the recommended amounts of each of the food groups.  However, Nutrient Mat could be expanded to also accommodate a person’s own personalized goals.


Material List

5 pressure sensors (1 for each food group: Grains, Veggies, Fruits, Milk, Meat & Beans)

several tri-color LEDs (although an OLED flexible screen would be ideal for this project, it is too costly for my budget)

white or clear tubes that will disseminate the light from the LEDs like a fluorescent tube

control mechanisms for describing portion control

Want to Learn

How to create interaction for personalizing an ambient display – for example, how do you add controls to adjust values without explicit switches?  How do you display which values the user is controlling without a traditional display?


~ by megd on April 6, 2010.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: