NurturePod: the future of parenting

Artist and experiential futurist Stuart Candy created a hypothetical near-future product called the NurturePod, a "programmable para-parenting pod" that takes care of all the bothersome things parents have to do to raise a baby, like pay attention to it. NurturePod is on exhibit at M HKA, the Museum of Contemporary Art in Antwerp, Belgium.

Andrew Curry interviewed Stuart about the project:

AC: One more thing that strikes me about this, about the languaging, is it's not just about marketing. There are a whole lot of cues about the idea of the new, the idea of the modern, and the classic ways in which technology companies make us feel inadequate and then sell us reassurance.

SC: I suppose using those tropes could be said to invite reflection on how embedded in the tropes we are, because we know this particular thing doesn't exist. But that's a bit of an intellectual angle. I find people's emotional responses interesting, from watching them interact with it and from what they've shared in conversation.

AC: What sort of things have they said?

SC: "I'm really drawn to this, and also repulsed by it." There's this sense of being torn, and that is quite satisfying to hear, because I think creating or inviting a complex emotional response is something that we should strive for in futures work. This is why design and film and performance and games are important –– the whole repertoire of approaches to experiential futures; like the proverbial toothbrush that reaches places regular ones can't. Hopefully we are on our way to a better futures toothbrush.

Related: Baby cries furiously whenever phone taken away, instantly pacified when returned