How can we bring "smart" technology to natural spaces without keeping people glued to their screens? Breadcrumbs decided to find out. The team did some good, ol' fashioned user research with volunteers, staff, and potential patrons of the Pittsburgh Botanic Garden, a 460-acre natural space rescued from reclaimed coal mines. Because the space is so rich with local history, conservation, and volunteerism, it has unique needs and goals that the team was keen to address.
The result was an immersive, adaptive art exhibit that educates, connects, and inspires visitors to the garden. Specifically, CommuniTree a sculpture that mimics the shape of a tree. The leaves are polycarbonate display panels, and there is an interactive display panel on the trunk of the tree. It is flexible and adaptive and content can be created and added at any time, meaning that the tree can change with the garden and continue to attract visitors through new and exciting art and learning opportunities.
CommuniTree was created by Breadcrumbs as a concept video for the Interaction Design Studio at Carnegie Mellon University.