Abstract

We describe the design, implementation and on going evaluation processes of “NukaBot”, a system built to realize Human to Microbe Interaction, aimed to assist production of fermented food. Our system senses, records and analyzes in real time the fermentation process inside a “nukadoko”, a traditional method to produce vegetable pickles in Japan that involves a highly complex network of microbes. The flora of a nukadoko mainly consists of lactic acid bacteria, yeasts and gram-negative bacteria. The novelty of our system lies in providing an intuitive user interface that lets its user chat with a virtual persona attributed to the nukadoko. The NukaBot thus enables non-specialists to discern the complex dynamics of the microbial communities within a nukadoko in daily situations.

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