The project aims to improve the accessibility of ICT products for older users by carrying out research into user requirements and behaviour and promoting inclusive design. This will be achieved through the implementation of adaptive personalised interfaces, which will be designed around individual user profiles. These will be constructed by gathering information on individual users via various sensors. A prototype of an interactive TV system will ultimately be produced by the project, which will offer television, remote exercise therapy and a social networking facility.
A further goal of the project is to educate industrial technology developers to improve awareness of the issues affecting the elderly through the medium of a ‘virtual user lab’ to model the kind of impairments they face and enabling developers to ‘experience’ them. Many developers are young and therefore often ignorant of the type of barriers faced by older people when using technology. Age-related impairments mean that the arena of technology may become less accessible over time due to sensory, cognitive and even physio-motor constraints. The project will look at adaptive interfaces as a dynamic tool to customise technology and thus increase inclusivity.
We have recently established a working relationship with the Radford Care Group in Nottingham, a day centre for older people, which is a charitable organisation run largely by volunteers. HFRG researchers currently visit the centre on a weekly basis to work with members in researching attitudes to, and exploring issues with, the use of technology.
For more information, email Rob Edlin-White or visit the MyUI website.
This project is partially funded by the European Commission under the Seventh (FP7 2007-2013) Framework Programme for Research and Technological Development