Connection for Elderly

Project Description

Three months design research project

In the Netherlands the population on elderly is rapidly growing. This has major influences on the well being of the Dutch society. A problem of the aging of the society is isolation. The aim of the project was to design a playful persuasive social product / service that encourages the older people to use the product / service to stay connected with each other. I became intrigued by phatic communication. I did research on and designed for phatic communication. The phatic function operates in communication when messages are not per se intended to specifically provide information, but it will provide the awareness that communication is possible.
I designed to two lights that are directly connected with each other over the internet. By touching the light with different qualities like time and pressure both the lights change of color and intensity. This creates awareness of each others presence. The persons can also develop a way of communication with the lights by giving meaning to the different lights.

With this project I have developed my qualitative research skills by doing several user tests. With these tests I have explored several (qualitative) research methods as interview, explorations and questionnaires.

User test with final prototype