‘Hello Lamp Post’ was something that I first heard about at its time of launch whilst watching the local news back in the summer of 2013. It was mentioned in our talk at the Pervasive Media Studio. It allows people to interact with street objects like drain covers, post boxes and lampposts. It works with the idea of a playable city and was a huge hit, winning the first every Playable City Award in 2013.
It works by simply sending a text to a number and with the code of the object. As all of these objects already have codes for other reasons it was easier to set up. Once the text was sent the system generated a response on the previous conversations the object had; had. This helped to make the objects more interesting to text as they learnt as they grew, meaning they would remember you and have better conversations, with some people building relationships as they walked to work over the summer.
The project was such a success we were told that the council had been looking into using it on a grander scale to report crimes. So for example if a bus stop had been damaged a member of the public could report it simply by sending in a text. This is a great idea and uses the idea of a playable city and turns it into something useful that can ultimately benefit the city.