Guess Your Green

Team Members: Erick Friis, Krithi Chandrakasan, Aina Martinez Zurita, Sam Resnick

The US fuel economy measurement dataset shows many surprising and non intuitive values for different car models. We want to tell this story, because we believe there is a disparity between perceived and actual fuel economy among car owners.

For our participatory data game we designed an interactive visual game on a mall display board that allows users to guess the relative efficiency of their car and compare this prediction with the true efficiency. The game initially prompts users to enter a prediction with the question “How efficient is your car?” and then allows them to input the make and model of their specific car to determine the accuracy of the prediction. Users will have to walk around to the other side of the kiosk to view the results creating an element of suspense. In addition to showing the disparity between the prediction and reality the game will also display similar vehicles that are more fuel efficient. This data will aggregate over many user interactions and will show the greyed out predictions of other users. This will create a graphic that is developed in real time and grows over the course of the day.

Our target audience for the game is individuals who go to malls, typically middle to upper class Americans. While more progressive and environmentally motivated individuals are likely to participate, we envision more widespread participation due to the unique and interactive aspects of the game. The game is applicable to both people with average incomes who drive vehicles like the Toyota Camry, and wealthier individuals who drive luxury cars like the Mercedes G550.  The participatory data game caters itself to the needs and desires of the particular user, based on what car they enter.  If they enter an average family vehicle, the system shows alternatives with similar safety rating, but if they pick a luxury or sports car, the system shows vehicles with similar horsepower.  The choice of a mall kiosk was especially important, as they are often located at high traffic locations and have great visibility to consumers.  Additionally, malls are typically located in suburbs where the primary mode of transportation is a car – think Long Island.

Our goals are to show that individuals generally believe they are more “green” than they are in actuality, as well as to motivate individuals to be more conscious of fuel efficiency and emissions when purchasing their next vehicle. Our interactive game does a great job of accomplishing the first goal by showing real time data on beliefs that are collected from many consumers at the mall. The second goal is accomplished with the call to action prompting users to be more conscious while also giving them specific vehicles to consider when making their next purchase.