Pooptopia, a pet waste removal urban game

Yesterday i visited the Interaction Design Institute Ivrea final show in Milan. Good stuff as usual. And even some excellent stuff here and there. I might post a bit slowly about the projects because i’d rather wait till the students have published some documentation about their work online.

popexpla.jpg010101nkliojuh.jpgAram explaining his project

Aram Saroyan Armstrong‘s final project is called Pooptopia and it’s all you can expect from such a title (briefly mentioned in March.)

Pooptopia pushes the boundaries of the rising service economy and joins a new breed of games that reclaim the urban environment for play, while struggling to become economically self-sustainable.


Pooptopia LBS is a pet waste removal service for city neighborhoods. It utilizes location-based technology to locate, monitor, and respond to problem areas. The service incorporates stakeholder action into the solution by empowering dog owners, poo-haters, and poo-hunters to easily mark the location of pet waste for pick-up by the Pooptopia service and municipal sanitation workers.

The goal of the Dark Treasure (Tesoro Scuro) game is to discover dog poo, make a picture of it and email it, with the location of the finding and your name or the name of your team. The claim will earn you points. You can earn double point if you also mark the exact location of your discovery on Pooptopia’s Tesoro Scuro Map. This “treasure map” is used to create nightly pick-up routes for the Pootectors, Pooptopia’s pet waste removal squad. Over time this data helps define zones as “Pooptopias” and “Puptopias”, which affects the cost of dog ownership and rewards responsible canine-loving communities: the poorer the rating, the higher the service fee.

Images on flickr.
Related story: Dog Poo Spray.