Time flies! Five years ago, when we started the project COLABORAR, we were far from imagining how the project would grow up, evolve and transform itself.
Project activities started in the Fall of 2011, with institutions being contacted to be part of an innovative project that aimed to create a user network comprised of seniors to take part in research studies with technology. Many would think that seniors and technology seemed not to combine. At the time, smartphones and tablets were not as popular as they are nowadays. However, and happily, many institutions accepted the challenge and were enthusiastic with the idea of seeing older adults interacting with technology.
It has been a very good experience for both researchers and older adults. We watch them becoming more experienced with touch screen devices, taking part in conversations about technology and using new technologies to communicate with distant relatives. They participate in our research studies because they think they are an important part on the process of building good solutions for future’s older adults. The insights we gather from all of them are important for researchers and enriches our studies.
We celebrated the projects’ anniversary with an event at Fraunhofer AICOS’ facilities. It is called Open Lab Day, in which we receive the stuff and attendees from Day Care/Living Centres to have some tea, cake and play games with us. This year was no exception and we invited two Day Care/Living Centres. The preparations started with the decorations of our Software Laboratory, the space we use for showcasing projects. Each year we make different decorations. We set up some tablets on the table and we played CognipPlay, the Fraunhofer AICOS’ platform of cognitive games designed to stimulate seniors’ memory. Then, we showed our guests how to take photographs and selfies with tablets. We could see how much they enjoyed taking selfies!
We are happy that we could provide a special day with lots of fun to our senior volunteers!