Project EGG is an art project meant to help Cornellians reflect on and become aware of certain health-related aspects of their daily habits, and to promote the idea of taking better care of themselves.
The application is disguised as a game, free for all Cornellians to download and play. To participants, the concept will be similar to that of tamagotchi: the participant is given an egg pet, and is expected to look after it (i.e. take it with them everywhere, and check its expressions once in a while) until it hatches. The app will ideally be location, time, and temperature-sensitive, so that the Egg can sense this basic information about its participant, and comment to the participant. Comments may be general (i.e. "It's so toasty! <3") or a request (i.e. "I'm so sad.. I know I'll feel better in College Town!").
However, at the end of the "game," geophysical-based statistics with temporal and temperature data about the participant's journey will 'hatch out' instead of a creature. The data will provide a summary of the participant's living habits, and whether or not it was healthy (i.e. travels outside a lot on days when it's below freezing, constantly stays up late at duffield = 'bad habits').
Conceptually, the app is a statement and critique on the living style of Cornellians because it is likely that not all Cornellians take care of themselves, especially in terms of sleeping habits. It questions their current lifestyle: how can they take care of a pet if they can't even take good care of themselves? Why do they choose to take care of a game application (or a task, or a homework assignment, or their iPhones) over taking care of their own health. There is a dual metaphor for the Egg: on one hand, it can represent the participant, and taking care of it is symbolic to the participant taking care of him/herself. On the other, it can also represent the useless piece of technology (our cell) we are deathly attached to--something we give care to at the expense of taking less care of ourselves.
Participants will ideally be Cornell undergraduate students, as these are the participants who will be spending the majority of their time on and around the Cornell campus (as opposed to graduate students, professors, and faculty, who may live far away from campus).
Setting: Cornell University and immediate grounds (i.e. College Town, North Campus, Willard Straight, etc)
- Strangers are encouraged to download the game, and accept long terms and conditions.
- Strangers should carry around their iPod/iPhone with them wherever they go, with the application on
- Strangers are encouraged to check the mood of their Egg every so often (surprise expressions/'Easter eggs' occur sometimes to reward those who do!)
- Eggs will sometimes give out requests (which are mostly location-based, and some time-based)-- Eggs will be more 'content' and hatch a little faster if these requests are fulfilled.
- After a set number of days or a set amount of active time out, the Egg will hatch with statistics about where and when the participant frequented
- Participant can then reflect on what this means (healthy habits vs bad), and can feel free to try again with a new egg.