Visits to the centres

As usually, we are making visits to the centres, wishing an excellent 2018 to the very supportive people who collaborate with us in many Fraunhofer‘s projects. We offer some tokens as well, along with the COLABORAR postcard.

Wishing all of you a happy new year. Here is to another year of great tests, questionnaires, user research and usability issues.

Happy Holidays!

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Happy Holidays everyone!

As end-of-year approaches, the COLABORAR team is making performance reviews and planning for the next year. We evaluate the last year work and accomplishments, hilighting the support for  Fraunhofer Portugal AICOS‘ research projects by recruiting users for research activities; COLABORAR also provided a guide to research ethics and a manual on how to conduct research activities with users, thus contributing for the uniformization of procedures and promoting guidance and reccomendations of good practices. We set goals for the next year as well. We plan improvements in the software COLABORAR is using to manage the projects and we will conduct a new survey with users in the network. And lots of tests and other research activities!

Happy Holidays from the COLABORAR team to you.

Celebrating the 6th anniversary of COLABORAR with volunteers

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It was an afternoon for celebrating the success of COLABORAR.

Fraunhofer Portugal AICOS hosted an event to mark 6 years of the project. We invited a group of volunteers from the user network COLABORAR and gave thanks for their participation. Symbolically, we were thanking all volunteers who participated in research activities throuth the last years. We hilighted the importance of their feedback on our projects and showed them the apps developed. Most importantly, we took this time for talking with them: different generations united for research and technology.

COLABORAR thanks all volunteers form the user network COLABORAR!

Celebrating the COLABORAR’s 6th Anniversary

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The researchers would like to thank the 1500 individuals who participated as users on the Fraunhofer’s tests and user research activities in the last 6 years. Their participation and critiques are essential to the quality of applications that has been developed at Fraunhofer Portugal AICOS.

Thank you to all our COLABORAR Volunteers!

Celebrate World Usability Day!

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What is World Usability Day?

World Usabiliy Day or Make Things Easier Day is an initiative celebrated worldwide annualy on the second Thursday of November, since 2005, this year on November 9. It aims to hilight the contribution of people who research, design, and evaluate the user experience of products and services.

This year’s theme is ” Inclusion through User Experience”.

“Inclusion is a complex condition, which in itself is not easy to harmonize, as individual and social diversity, for example in access to educational, health, work, and technology opportunities.Technology, nowadays is more, more powerful, and economically accessible, it is an undeniable factor of inclusion and growth, a carrier infrastructure of opportunities for participation and competence development in many areas. But if participation is a cultural property, what are the characteristics of the technologies that can best help it?” (Campus Luigi Einaudi – Italy)

 

In celebration of World Usability Day, many organizations hold events to mark the day. COLABORAR takes this opportunityto thank all the participants in usability studies of Fraunhofer Portugal AICOS, because users are essential to these studies. Additionaly, we would like to introduce you to the Fraunhofer Portugal AICOS’ Human-Computer Interaction research team members.

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Ana Vasconcelos

Ana Vasconcelos is an Engineer in Informatics. She has worked in many projects related to User Interface Usability in the area of technology for Ambient Assisted Living for older adults. Her main focus has been mobile health and wellness solutions, adding contributions to successful mobile technology interventions.

Catarina Correia

Catarina Correia is a Communication Designer. She usually works in the visual identity, design of interaction or in projects’ communication. In the most cases, she works with mobile applications and wearable devices.

Eduardo Pereira

Eduardo Pereira is a User Experience and Interaction Designer. He works in projects related to serious games for therapeutic rehabilitation or technologies for Developing Countries.

Elsa Oliveira

Elsa Oliveira is a Communication Designer. She is involved in the creation of user interfaces in projects related to serious games for fall prevention and physical exercise for the elderly. She usually works in many projects’ aspects, since the initial concept to the final communication.

Francisco Nunes

Francisco Nunes is a an Engineer in Informatics. He is the responsible for the Human-Computer Interaction team and thus he supports researchers in many projects. His main research interest is especially in the field of Self-care technologies and Ambient Assisted Living for older adults.  He is also a regular international conference speaker.

Jorge Ribeiro

Jorge Ribeiro is an Interaction Designer. He has been involved in studies about user research and experience design targeted older adults, being therefore in constant contact with older adults from the user network COLABORAR.

Paulo Silva

Paulo Silva is a Mechanical Engineer. He works in the development of a prototype for the automatic detection of Malaria, ensuring its mechanical viability, and focus on usability studies with the aim of ensuring a universal use of the prototype. In addition to the product development focus, his interest areas are: innovation, CAD modelation and 3D printing.

Ricardo Peixoto

Ricardo Peixoto is a Mechanical Engineer and an Industrial Designer. He works with 3D object prototyping for various contexts and has a special interest in products designed to solve usability problems in the fine motor skills and manual dexterity of the elderly.

Sílvia Rêgo

Sílvia Rêgo is a Nurse and she is the main responsible of the user network COLABORAR. She coordinates tests with users, organizing test sessions, recruiting participants and sheduling tests. She is also involved in issues related to organizational procedures of usabiliy and validation tests, ethics in research and submisson of studies to ethics committees.

DctivPR web application for visualization of user’s physical activity information tested

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Smart Companion, the android customization for smartphones targeting older adults, enables the collection of data related to physical activity. In order to provide an easy and effective way to analyze the data collected, a web application was developed.

Then, tests with possible end-users was carried out so to verify that the user easily catches relevant information from the application. Participants answered to a questionnaire about the habits of the predefined Smart Companion users.

This work was carried out in the scope of the master thesis entitled “DActivPR – Daily Activity Pattern Recognition Tool“.

Tests for Cordon Gris

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A new web app for CordonGris project was tested by Fraunhofer Portugal AICOS‘ researchers with the participation of COLABORAR volunteers.

The new app for seniors enables the creation of a profile for each user, by introducing data such as Anthropometric data, Physical activity, Food preferences and restrictions. Then, the app provides a personalized reccomendation meal plan for each user, according to the information introduced.The system was built with senior friendly interfaces, so that users can easily use it.

Participants gave excellent feedback about the app, since they consider it may assist older adults so to they maintain a healthy and independent life.

Celebrating World Food Day with Cordon Gris tests

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Here, the World Usability Food Day was celebrated with tests to the prototype of the Cordon Gris application. The 16th October was spent at a Living Center for Seniors in Porto, testing the new web application that enables seniors to have access to meal plans according to their preferences and restrictions.

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Master thesis presentation in the area of Social Education

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In the scope of DEMind, Fraunhofer Portugal AICOS supported a Master’s thesis from the Master Course in Community Intervention – Area of Specialization: Active Ageing, of Escola Superior de Educação de Paula Frassinetti, entitled “Active aging: the support of information and communication technologies and social support networks”. Among Fraunhofer‘s projects, the Exergames was selected, since it is a platform of physical exercise games for older adults, enabling them to stay active, preventing their risk of fall.

Troughout COLABORAR, the ExerGames platform was integrated in the weekly plan of a day-care centre in Porto. Participant observations of the activities enabled the student to collect information regarding the implementation of a new activity for seniors with Information and Communication Solutions. Then, the acceptance of the technology was assessed, as well as its usability and user satisfaction.

Finally, the student presented her work within her Master’s thesis for Fraunhofer‘s researchers. Her study is very interesting because it shows the perspective of the Social Education about the ExerGames in activities for older adults.

Older adults experiences with ExerGames: case study for two theses

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We have received excellent feedback from users regarding ExerGames. These games are being available for users from a day-care centre in Porto, partner institutional in the scope of COLABORAR. Activities with the application were included in the weekly activities planning of the centre.

A doctoral degree student and a master degree student have been accompanying the process of introducing a new activity for seniors based on Information and Communication Solutions. Non-participant observations were carried out troughout several weeks, as well as questionnaires for initial and final assessment. The information collected will enable the doctoral student to develop a dissertation about the aspects involved in customer experiences of Ambient Assisted Living Technologies and the master student the role of Information and Communication Solutions in active ageing.

Thank you to participants who took this challenge from COLABORAR!