Blogging Houseplant Lives In Japanese Cafe

Talking to plants to encourage their growth is nothing new, but plants that communicate back to you is a little more unusual.  Midori-san is a Japanese Sweetheart Hoya that lives at the bowls Donburi Cafe in Kamakura; surface potential sensors measure the changes in bioelectric current flowing across its leaves, and run those figures through a plant-to-Japanese translator. Those sentences are then posted on Midori-san's blog.

Since bioelectric current varies with environmental conditions – temperature, humidity, vibration, electromagnetic waves and nearby human activity – the blog posts discuss different temperature and lighting conditions experienced that day and say how "fun" the day was.  There's also a photo of the plant an a plant-related joke.

Visitors to the blog can remotely turn on a fluorescent light and give Midori-san a chance to photosynthesize; the plant then says thank you via the blog.  The technology was developed by Satoshi Kuribayashi of the Keio University Hiroya Tanaka Laboratory, and aside from giving a houseplant its five-minutes of fame is intended to explore environmentally-linked intelligent networks.

[via Pink-Tentacle]