Saturday, 26 February 2011

For the presentation

Hi everyone, here's what we need for the presentation/report.

1) Introduction.
What is Assisted Living and Assisted Living for our case (examples for dementia)

2) Our Persona -description and The specific problem for our persona (current solutions)
Scenarios (optional)

3) Description of our device (what it does and how it looks)

4) Description of how it works (how it is refilled, programmed, activated, deactivated...)

5) Conclusion (why it is important and its feasibility)

On Tuesday we will divide the presentation, so that each one will have one part to deliver and to write on.
On Thursday we will meet to rehearse the presentation, let's say around 12 in H109.

Although the report is due on Monday week 20, therefore there is one more week after the presentation, I'd suggest to start writing it so that the material can be used for the presentation.


Wednesday, 23 February 2011

Yesterday's Meeting

Hi everyone,
The meeting held as agreed, but Sima and Saynu were absent. We need everyone's contribution on this, hence this post to update on the status of things so we can also get feedback from those absent.

Our target user: elderly suffering memory loss from dementia (early stage alzheimer's)
Our device: A sort of pill dispenser that reminds the user to take her pills.

The more ideas, the better, we need more ideas, guys! How can we implement/design this device? Or are there any other entirely new solutions/devices being proposed from Sima and Saynu?

Our next meeting is Friday, as usual. But posting your ideas for us to see before then would be great.


Friday, 18 February 2011

The point

First of all, welcome on board to Sima. (We'll change the name of the group to SODAS...)

For our CW, we have decided to design:
a device for direct assistance to old people suffering of cognitive problems, specifically memory loss.

We need to decide a couple of more things and we will use the weekend to do researches.
Things to decide are:
if we consider memory loss due to age or due to dementia (Alzheimer's?);
what specific problem (or area of problems) are we considering -e.g., forgetting appointments.

Next Tuesday at 11, there's a meeting to compare ideas and researches.

Thursday, 17 February 2011

Ideas, ideas, ideas, anyone?

Even if presentation is now in week 18 and not 17, I think we are overlooking the importance of the phase of brainstorming.
By Friday we should have had at least some concrete ideas to work on, instead, according to Ola's recap (by the way, thanks) we still have to confront ideas.
Do I have to remind you that it's especially in this phase that we should keep a tight exchange of communication?

Briefly on other things:
The decision on the format on how to present scenarios for the report can wait at least another week.
For the presentation we can simply follow the guidelines of the brief.
Right, we could use video there too, but let's try to be realistic and pragmatic: for the first part of the CW we need to show we can make a serious research and present the results.
The "assisted living environment" is suggestive, I wonder if practical. (I know nothing about it)
See you in the Lab on Friday, or before if you are there.


Yesterday's Meeting (Contd.)

In contrast to the cognitive disabilities highlighted in the previous post, motor disabilities are another form we could focus on. Herein comes, visual impairments, hearing impairments etc. This could also affect the aging population too, but isn't considered exclusive to them. Motor disability may result from:
  • invalidating diseases (polio, turbecolosis, etc.)
  • accidents (war injuries, road accidents, etc.)
  • complications during birth (cerebral palsy, etc.)
  • genetic/congenital problems.

But since our target users are the aging population, we have to approach solutions to this with regards to them.

So, once more, cognitive or motor?

An example motor disability:

Yesterday's Meeting

For those who weren't there, or aren't clear
Though we couldn't have the mini-presentations that we had envisioned earlier for our meeting yesterday, we had some results:

1. We spoke primarily about our target users. We had to decide between the aging population and the disabilities that accompany aging, and users with disabilities not triggered by age.
OUTCOME: On this, we decided to use the members aging population (suggested as from 65 years onwards) as our target user.

2. We also had to decide on what sort of disabilities we wanted to focus on; motor or cognitive?
OUTCOME: Not everyone had carried out research regarding this, so we rescheduled the meeting to today, after Bryan's lecture (No one showed up, by the way).

3. Concerns were raised regarding the best way we could present the design? Video, Paper, Storyboard? How?
OUTCOME: This is still undecided. But the video prototype looked good to everyone.

Other things we need to decide on include:
1. Would it be an assisted living device, or an assisted living environment that we are creating? (I think it should be a device)
2. From the coursework brief, we can tell that we have to decide on this:
Will the device directly provide assistance? Or, will it facilitate communication with 3rd parties that can help? (I think this area would be interesting to decide on because quite a lot of good ideas can come into play either way)
3. What technologies are we going to need?

From my findings, I have learned/gathered that the most common form of cognitive disabilities among the aging population are dementia (with the most common form being Alzheimer's disease), and delirium. There are social, psychological and other issues related to these that we need to take into consideration in our design. How I wish we could have a real target user to work with!

Anyway, some sites I looked into (could be helpful if you checked it out as well):

Cognitive Disabilities (browse site to see others):

Another angle to approach this: Welfare Technology:

A link to assisted living products already available:

I found some papers too. I really wish we could have a more comprehensive discussion on this to share and put all our ideas together. Guys, when can this happen? I think tomorrow would be great. If you guys agree to that, should it be before or after novel class?

We need to begin to pull our resources together. Any ideas, comments on this, or any other matter?


Andrea, on the time-chart you drew out, what are we supposed to have achieved by this Friday? I checked the links you sent, I think the "enabledbydesign" is especially good, with lots of ideas.

Wednesday, 16 February 2011


I can't access the blog from my  home internet. I don't why. So P lease whenever you guys send to blog , send it to mail also. Please!!

Some thoughts

Hi girls,

sorry for not being there.
Unfortunately, I don’t know why but from home I can’t access academic papers as I would like to, therefore so far I don’t have an exact idea on what is the state-of-the-art technology.

Anyway, give a look here for some ideas:

and here to see what's already available

As said, I am researching on problems of the Deaf Community, whose emancipation has been already largely helped by texts, email and screen-based devices.

There are still situations of difficulty which are often resolved in the private environment (e.g., a light signalling a call at the door or on the telephone) but cannot be always translated in public context (e.g., announcements by tannoy at the airport).

Whatever the technology we decide to design, I also suggest to try and keep on working on our tangible interface, if possible. This will give consistency to our work and we know, more or less, what can be really feasible or not.
(On the other side, we already know that anything serious is not of immediate realisation, although I am sure that to professionals working on our design it shouldn’t take long to achieve some results).

I'll wait for the outcomes of the meeting


Monday, 14 February 2011

Who's next?

Girls, remember when I asked who woulb the next in getting sick after Saynu?
Well, I am next.
I am stuck in bed and not at all fine.
Tuesday I won't come and probably Wednesday and Thursday either.
This situation makes me think of Assistive Technology for people confined in bed, and
some ideas has even come up to me, although not very original, I am afraid (if we don't consider some bright hallucinations I'm having from time to time).

Before getting sick, I was thinking about assisting the deaf, because I have some contacts with the Italian community.
But then, as said, I got sick and stopped very soon.
Apologies for my absence, but keep me posted and I'll try to work during spells of "sanity".


Sunday, 13 February 2011

Tuesday (Meeting to compare ideas)

Here's what I think "Meeting to compare ideas" on Tuesday should be like (for the sake of time):
Each of us during our brief presentation should aptly cover:

1. People - Who would use the system and their disability
2. Activity and Context - What these people want to do and in what context
3. Design - What is the proposed design (and if any, ideas on how we could do it)
4. Technologies - Which platform (tangible, augmented etc or a mix of platforms), and maybe also components, devices etc the design would/could be on

Please state/provide basis for design idea (research or references to research materials used) regarding the 4 areas outlined above.

Let's all bear in mind that we don't have much time.

Comments are welcome.


Friday, 11 February 2011

Schedule for our next CW

Hi girls, here's the proposed schedule for our CW. If someone wants to propose a different one, feel free, but do it in the next two days. Otherwise, the following will be tacitly agreed.

From today (Friday) to Monday

Literature Survey
Although in this phase we'll research individually, let's keep in touch if someone has something to ask

Tuesday h 11
Meeting to compare ideas
This is a meeting to brainstorm and to compare our own researches. Everyone will pitch his/her idea (max 5 minutes each to explain) and at the end of this meeting we will agree on what we will be working on and how, possibly dividing the workload.

Friday h 11
Meeting in the lab, comparing progress
Here we will check our progress, perhaps asking some feedback to Bob (not necessary, if we have everything clear).
Please note that personally I don't find the lab ideal for a productive group meeting (too many people in too small
a room), therefore there will probably be the need to meet afterwards.

Tuesday h 11
Let's meet here again to check our progress, so that everyone has the general picture and knows what the others are at.

I think we all agree we need to rehearse the presentation.
I am proposing Wednesday and not Thursday because if something is wrong we have one day to do some more work (and in case a new rehearsal).

Friday h 11
(I think this is obvious. Try to be punctual)


Friday, 4 February 2011

A bit disappointed

Girls, where were you?
I thought -it's rhetorical, I am sure- we had a meeting, but only Olamide showed up.
Ironically, I wanted to talk in the meeting about being punctual (with times and deadlines) and don't let others waste their time...

And also a short debriefing meeting after (and about) the presentation would have been nice.
Let me know when to meet