FridgeMatch: Design probe into the future of urban food commensality

Denisa Kera, Nur Liyana Sulaiman

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

14 Scopus citations


The FridgeMatch prototype was an educational experiment in rethinking the future of sharing food and eating together (commensality) from a design and a Science Technology Society studies (STS) perspectives. We designed a new practice of mediating food over social networks, which reflected related phenomena of underground restaurants, crowdsourcing of food information and persuasive apps supporting various dieting practices etc. With this prototype we supported ad hoc interactions over impromptu dinners based on sharing data on food leftovers, which enabled commensality between strangers. The project was part of a series of workshops between several universities and local hackerspaces in Singapore, Prague and Amsterdam in 2010-2011. We involved university students, but also local foodies and hackerspace members and asked them to reflect upon existing food online networks and then collectively create a prototype for a novel form of commensality. While as an educational probe, FridgeMatch examines the possibilities of interdisciplinary (design and STS) case study approach to teaching, as a prototype it supported interaction between strangers over food leftovers in their refrigerators. With this probe and prototype we tried to follow and understand the emergent actor-network relations between leftovers (their ethics and economy), Facebook app (technologically mediated forms of interactions between strangers), refrigerators (as an important site of everyday practices), and the users (lifestyles in the modern city).

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)194-201
Number of pages8
StatePublished - 1 Oct 2014
Externally publishedYes

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2014 Elsevier Ltd.


  • Design probes
  • Food applications
  • Food commensality
  • Food interaction
  • Food studies
  • Food wastage
  • Leftovers


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