by Cristina Gena
WantEat is about interacting with everyday objects that become intelligent hubs for accessing and sharing the cultural heritage of a territory. Objects are smart in the sense that they share knowledge with users, interact with them in a personalized way and maintain social relationships with users and other objects. When interacting with an object, a user can share information with it and is also introduced to the social network of its friends; the user can explore this network to discover new interesting information, services, objects, people. The objects we consider belong to the realm of gastronomy, including food items, shops, restaurants, cooks, recipes, etc. On the one hand, this allows people to get in touch with the deep culture of a territory, making people aware of their traditions and supporting a sustainable gastronomy; on the other hand, the approach supports networking and the promotion of local quality productions and economy. In the paper we (i) present the framework and applications we developed, (ii) discuss the peculiar mix of AI technologies we exploited to create social intelligence and embed it into everyday objects, (iii) discuss the innovative interaction approach we developed aiming at natural interaction with no infra-structuring and (iv) report on the field trial we performed using the suite of applications we developed.