Stanford Longevity Design Challenge Winner.

On April 10th, the Stanford Center on Longevity “Design Challenge” inaugural winner was announced from a list of seven finalists. Sha Yao and her project Eat Well was chosen for the top prize of $10,000. Ms. Yao is from the Academy of Art University in San Francisco; and the Eat Well design creation was for a table setting customized to help people with Alzheimer’s eat unassisted.

The theme of the contest was to encourage technology based solutions for: “maximizing independence for those with cognitive impairment”. Stanford received 52 submissions from 31 universities in 15 countries – a truly international affair. In my Jan.28 post the top three that stood out for me were:

Automated Home Activity Monitoring – Guido Pusiol, Stanford University

Caresolver –  Arick Morton, Harvard University

Memory Maps – Ritika Mathur, Copenhagen Institute of Design

It turns out that 3rd place went to Memory Maps, a technology that allows a person with early stage cognitive issues and their family to record memories attached to real-world locations. The 2nd place winner was the Taste + project from the Keio-NUS CUTE Centre at the National University of Singapore – a spoon that electrically stimulates taste buds for better eating for those with diminished taste sensation.

As Ken Smith, Director of Mobility at Stanford says about the design challenge; it’s “…a way to introduce a whole generation of young designers to how the population is aging and where this opens up opportunities for their work.” And so too we’ve positively advanced the business of aging!


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