SeeBoat is a fleet of remote controlled boats that measure and display water quality on site and in real time. It seeks create a data physicalization from water quality data to make it more relatable and easier to understand than a graph or table.

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 digital graphs, 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 has been tested in a number of water bodies in the greater Boston area to understand local water quality and pollution sources. It builds from the Thermal Fishing Bob from Public Lab.

SeeBoat is an open source project licensed under GPLv2 and Creative Commons. More documentation can be found on github. All pictures are copyright by the artists.

Jorge Valdez

Laura Perovich

Laura Perovich

Talia Spitz

SeeBoat is a project from Laura Perovich at the MIT Media Lab with Sara Wylie, Talia Spitz, Don Blair, Robert Henning, Rod Bayliss, Claudia Chen, Sophia Struckman, Rima Rebei, and GreenRoots' ECO crew.

Special thanks to our photographer Jorge Valdez (IG: jorgelvma) and event helpers Dan Novy, Chia Evers, Jessie Wang, Aubrey Simonson, Sam Costa, and Ali Shtarbanov. Thanks also to V. Michael Bove and the Object-Based Media Group, the Boston University Technology and Cyberlaw Clinic, the Media Lab Elements Fellowship, Public Labs, and our community participants.

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