The Alexandra Institute // Cases // Pick your food with the mobile

Pick your food with the mobile


Pick your food with the mobile

Online guide to wild, edible plants

We have developed an app prototype that works as an online plant guide for tourists in the Nordic countries.

Pick your food with your mobile is the Alexandra Institute's contribution to the project ICT toolbox in the experience economy, a joint Nordic innovation project. The overall objective was to drive business development and value creation in the tourism industry in the Nordic countries through increased use of IT.

Eating and experiencing local food is an essential part of travelling and getting to know the Nordic countries. There is a growing interest among locals and tourists in experiencing Nordic food, and especially to get out in nature and pick the wild edible plants in their natural habitat.

The project pursued three main goals:

  • To build up a strong Nordic cooperation between tourism industry clusters and tourism institutes/research.
  • To generate joint knowledge of IT models and toolkits in use today.
  • To create improved commercial tools and concepts, including new concepts by incorporating a Nordic-style approach and a strong focus on service design, increased customer value and technology use.

The project is owned by Nordlandsforskning and involved partners from Norway, Finland, Denmark, Iceland and Sweden. 

The Alexandra Institute developed a prototype of a mobile application, which can help tourists in the Nordic countries to find and recognise wild, edible plants.

The prototype was developed to test the concept and get user feedback. It has not been fully developed and cannot be downloaded.

The aim of the mobile application named ‘Pick your food with your mobile’ is to give tourists an online and personal guide to natural experiences in the Nordic countries. The application will support the online presence of the Nordic countries and invites tourists to actively interact with the Nordic values. It is a unique example of how the use of a social media concept can add value and increase tourism in the Nordic countries.

The prototype is a concrete technology case, from which we can learn and gain new knowledge about the value of using IT in the tourism industry. Involving Nordic tourists in user tests was an important part of the project.

The project was organised as a user-driven innovation project with active participation of users in the development process – in this case tourists in the Nordic countries.

The project built on the latest research in computer vision and machine learning in the following ways:

  • Computer vision: Removal of poor images before processing
  • Segmentation: Separation of leaves from the background
  • Feature extraction: Description of the shape of leaves at micro and macro level
  • Comparison of these features with the database of already classified images.

The project generated new knowledge about the technological possibilities within plant recognition.

We developed methods to safely and easily gather knowledge about wild, edible plants in a form that can be used in a mobile application.

The project also generated new knowledge about how to communicate easy-to-understand information about wild, edible plants to end users, and how a mobile application can support value creation for tourists in the Nordic countries. 

By exploring new ways to engage tourists in the core values of the Nordic countries and promoting the use of IT-enabled services, the project has contributed to value creation in the tourism industry.

The project is owned by Nordlandsforskning and involves partners from Norway, Finland, Denmark, Iceland and Sweden. 

We make natural experiences even better with mobile solutions.

Contact us to learn more.

Manager – Intelligent Sustainability
People, Technology and Business Lab
+45 30 23 66 22
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