Mikayla StokesWestern Springs College
Mikayla’s project is an automated vertical garden controlled through a smartphone app. The idea is no effort gardening, an ideal solution for busy families and people who forget to water plants. All the user needs to do is plant the plant in the system, input it into the app, go live their life and then harvest it when sent a notification by the app. Mikayla has also created an automated control tank for the hydroponics system, which maintains the pH and nutrient levels required by the plants.
What inspired you to create your project?
Well living in Auckland and its constantly shrinking property sizes, no one has any backyard space to have a vegetable garden anymore. Also a lot of us are too busy, or don’t have the knowledge of how to look after a garden. How many times do I water it a day? Nutrients? Weeds? I decided I wanted to make an innovative solution that addressed these diverse problems that we all face every day, in a unique and convenient way utilising everyday technology like our phones.
Are you the first tech inventor in your family?
Growing up my dad has always encouraged me and my brother to figure out how thing work, which also moved to us wanting to figure out how to make these things better with technology. It led to us inventing things to solve real world problems to improve the world around us.
Who influences your tech/innovation?
I think I am most inspired and influenced by entrepreneurs I see in start-up companies, creating inventions to solve real world problems. I love using my engineering and technical skills to create innovative inventions and combine this with my entrepreneurial skills to create real products that solve the problems of my customers.
What is the best thing about the ASB Bright Sparks competition to you?
I really love how you bring together the top inventors from around the country, so that we can share ideas, talk about our passions, and issues that we are passionate about. We are an unusual group of people scattered throughout New Zealand, and it is an invaluable experience bringing us like-minded people together to help change the world one invention at a time.