The time I built a smart, low-cost, irrigation system to combat water wastage in Dubai 🇦🇪

The common pass
Where, clear as glass,
All must descend
Not to an end,
But quicken’d by this deep and rocky grave,
Rise to a longer course more bright and brave.

Henry Vaughan (1621-95), The Waterfall

In Brief: 🌱 💧 ⚙️

While I was in highschool, I participated in what was known at the time as the AICE Accelerator Programme which taught students about the entrepreneurship process and how to take a product from concept to MVP. It was one of the first times I got a hands-on approach on the design thinking process and it was the catalyst that made me into the entrepreneur I am today. Over the course of several months, my team of 7 and I identified the need for a smart irrigation system in Dubai, especially during the summer months when the harsh desert sun would kill lawns, imposing a huge cost on home owners to replace their lawns every year. In response to this problem, we produced a business plan and a working MVP for a smart, IoT irrigation system that used the moisture level of the soil to determine when to water plants and lawns, thus maintaining an optimum moisture level and preventing an individual’s lawn from being killed.

We ended up winning the IoT Senior category of the AICE program and got a lot of press coverage from publications such as Teach Middle East Magazine and the Khaleej Times. The entire experience was a great way to be introduced to the world of Design Thinking and entrepreneurship.

[More information to come soon!]

The MVP in Action

The time I built a vending machine

StartupHotel wanted to solve an important pain point for entrepreneurs: having to pay high costs to have a point of sale for their products. I helped design, fabricate, and program a low-fidelity prototype of a wooden vending machine that would provide a low-cost, highly adaptable space for entrepreneurs to get their products out there. This was developed using an iterative process that involved key stakeholders such as shop owners that would be hosting these hotels, users that would be buying from these hotels, and entrepreneurs that would be selling stuff out of the hotels.