“AlphaGarden places a robot into a
living polyculture garden to study the nature of diversity and explore the limitations of artificial intelligence in the context of ecology and sustainability. The project in progress consists of an automated robot that has been installed over a 3 meters long by 1.5 meters wide garden at the University of California at Berkeley. Deep Learning AI policies attempt to control the three-axis robot that tends the garden, which includes edible plants and invasive species in a biodiverse polyculture environment. AlphaGarden does not assume the garden will flourish. The robot will struggle. It will over-water, under-prune; plants may die;  invasive species in the garden may take over. The robot is being trained with simulations that run 100,000 times faster than nature. But simulations only approximate reality.” - Sarah Newman, Harvard metaLAB

Role: Interaction Designer
Year: 2019-present
Collaborators: Ken Goldberg and The AlphaGarden Collective