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Quote of the Month
“People have a hard time understanding the passage of time and in
order to understand it latch onto something we do understand - the
unfolding of events”
Dr. Gal Zauberman, Assoc. Professor of
Wharton School of Business, University of Pennsylvania
Technology: Now, Soon and on the Drawing Boards
Photo By: Macin Smolinski
Kent Larson, principal investigator for MIT's House_n
Team believes mass home customization is the future.
In "New Technologies for Aging in Place" by Athan
Bezaitis, he writes, "New developments in technology promise to
help transition healthcare from expensive clinical settings into
private residences, encourage behavioral modifications that
emphasize prevention rather than treatment of illnesses, and make it
easier for family caregivers to monitor loved ones and take action
in case of an emergency."
Collaboration between businesses and university research centers
around the country are driving a lot of the development of these
technologies for housing, healthcare and general improved lifestyle.
Highlighted in the article are current technologies, soon to be
released and those in development, which include:
- Intelligent Toilets that test sugar levels and blood
- Mobile monitoring systems that keep track of a loved ones
The biggest challenge for most people who want to age in
their own home is their home. Going up and down stairs, using
the bathroom and simply getting in and out of the house are
- MIT is developing a Legos type of system for interior
customization using a chassis model (inspired from the
automobile, electronics, aviation and ship building industries)
that can reconfigure a home to meet the occupant's needs.
Technology used for behavior modification to help maintain
- USC working with doctors to create "smart spectacles" so the
visually impaired can get around their home.
- Researchers are working on technology "coaches" to help with
lifestyle choices by creating awareness and providing feedback.
- UCLA researchers have created a handheld video game to keep
Accessible and easy will be the key to
acceptance. "The reality remains," says Bezaitis, "that no matter how wired, sensored, or
digitized the homes of the future become, new technologies will
need to be accessible and user friendly in order for people like
my grandmother to adopt them."
Click here to read the original (full) story.
Free Trackless Tub & Shower Doors
In 1985 the two top executives for Lyons Industries, Inc.,
Don Lyons and Gary Huff, attended a plumbing products show in Frankfurt, Germany. At that show they saw a trackless tub door and fell in love with its practical beauty. Unfortunately, as is typical with many products made for the European market, it was quite expensive, with a retail price over $1500.00. But the idea was born.
The bottom edge of the door is bent inwards to direct
the water back into the bathtub or shower whether the door is open
Their challenge was to re-engineer the trackless concept to take out the
cost but leave in the great trackless design and full unobstructed
access. The trackless design was achieved by using lightweight, yet extremely
durable space age materials that allow the doors to be hung from the
walls, unlike traditional glass and metal doors that require a system of
tracks to carry their weight.
The lower edge of the doors are angled inward at the bottom which
forces water to run back into the tub saving the floor from water
damage. Their bi-fold design allows the door
to fold out of the way when not in use to provide easy unobstructed
access to the tub or shower.
Learn More: Trackless Shower Door Exhibit by Lyons
Tip: It's All
Our AIP Professional's Tip for better aging in place is from Occupational
Young, owner of EmpowerAbility, LLC., Debra says:
Debra Young, owner of EmpowerAbility, LLC, shares her
tip for better aging in place.
"It is all about lighting and access to it! Use of rocker or touch
light switches in lieu of toggle switches will maximize overall ease
of use. For lamps within the house, a lamp switch enlarger is one
option to provide easy grasp. If the goal is to increase the amount
of lighting while maintaining ease of access and not break the
budget, use of the "Stick N Click" lights will help with task
lighting, while a wireless light switch/pad (i.e.: Perfect Switch,
Handy Switch) will give you access to a light anywhere within your
Debra Young, MEd, OTR/L, ATP,
CAPS has 15 years of clinical Occupational Therapy experience and is
RESNA and NAHB certified. Her company,
is an Occupational Therapy based consulting agency that offers
Aging-In-Place, Home Safety, Assistive Technology and Accessibility
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