with Sara Wylie (Northeastern University), Roseann Bongiovanni (GreenRoots), Don Blair, Robert Henning, Rod Bayliss, and Claudia Chen
SeeBoat is a fleet of remote controlled boats that measure and display water quality in real time. It seeks to visceralize rather than simply visualize data by creating a data physicalization that makes water pollution data present.
The boats measure water temperature, conductivity, and turbidity and displays the data by changing color in real time. Numeric sensor data is also transmitted via radio, visible through an Android app, and can be further recording using long exposure photos. SeeBoat makes environmental data experiential and interactive to help both communities and researchers better understand pollution and its implications.
SeeBoat and its previous iteration, the Thermal Fishing Bob, has been tested in the Charles River and Mystic River. We are currently using it on the Chelsea River in partnership with GreenRoots to understand local water quality and pollution sources. This project builds on previous research on dat experiences including Dressed In Data and BigBarChart.