I'm not exactly what you might call a gardener. The only thing alive in my last apartment was the green stuff that had been in the back of the fridge since my roommate and I had moved in. But this year, my girlfriend gave me a plant for my birthday and somehow—wonder of wonders—it's still going strong, six months later, despite infrequent watering, repeated dropping, and the loving ministrations of our household cat.
But the way to get me interested in something, as we've established, is to technologify it. I'm all over this USB sensor from PlantSense. The idea is to stab the stake-shaped sensor into the soil of your plant and connect it to your computer via the USB plug at the stake's top. You can then connect to PlantSense's website and it'll tell you how you've been abusing your green little friend: not enough sunlight, too much water, and it can make recommendations, like "put it on a higher shelf, where the cat won't try to eat it."
PlantSense has developed working prototypes, but they're looking for funding. The USB sensor would probably run $50, including a one year subscription to the website; further years would cost $20/year. A small price to pay for keeping your plants happy, healthy, and cat-free.
[via Engadget ]