How This Food Computer Will Allow Anyone to Be a Farmer

Caleb Harper of MIT creates 'food computers' that are helping to change the landscape of our food system.
3:00 | 09/30/16

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Transcript for How This Food Computer Will Allow Anyone to Be a Farmer
People imagine a farm. You know they imagine that kind of call or landscape. Idyllic place which I love you know I grew up in a place sort of like that. There's a tension between that vision. A happy farm that's made by your neighbors and seating. Ten million people in the city. My name's bill Parker and research scientist at the MIT media. My family is in the Gershon business. An and agriculture because raised around raising animals and plants and selling food. As any young kind of young person. I didn't wanna do him it does so I went off and became an architect. And engineers professionally designs data centers. It came this weird specialist and control environments now I'm kind of taking that applying it to something that I love which. So behind me right now is one of our scales of technology platforms called the food server. Inside this box we're creating climate. And we're monitoring climate sensors are those sensors arcane data like CO2 data how much is in there humidity data temperature data. About thirty data points per plant. And we encapsulate that we make the plant recipe. What we're really doing is making a correlation. Between the environment. And what we got. And we put that on Wikipedia and someone else can then pull that file down. Loaded into their food computer and within a tolerance grow very similar face off. Essentially you can be growing the same basal and Boston in Antarctic and in the Sahara Desert. Inside the lab there's kind of a chest right and this is just a point of registration. And then we have sub components it's just like a computer so like instead of hard drive we have a little box. And that box may use aero products which is very simply just missed. In a box there's no standing water there's no soil we've been able to create this properly in about. Think it's about eight weeks on this cycle where you know typically could be up to a 16890. Days. You know some people look at this and they see kind of Franken plants. Right and and it just reveals how much we don't know. If it if world was planned world. There would be no other colors than these colors that they used to be photos emphatically active but. In here. What I'm trying to do is learn the language of the plant. As strange as it may look it's it's beautiful and natural. We realize over the summer that by creating these big boxes they're awesome. But they cost too much and they were gonna reach too few people. So instead of creating a 100000 dollar box. We wanted to 100000 dollar boxes and so that's what we started working on in and we've delivered them to schools all over Boston. You're Google you're FaceBook. Your Internet. It's going to be digital and physical. And so I would call this the beginning of the Internet of food. And it's you Wear it squarely in your hands. And you're gonna do with fools like this. And so I just encourage you to be part of it I'm not going to solve a specific problem. I'm going to create one billion more farmers so basically you can like. Kind of time travel or world travel inside of here. And those farmers are going to solve the problems that we need now and into the future.

This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.

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