Sunday, July 15, 2012

Project presented at IDC'12

I presented the Uncommon Sense project at the Interaction Design and Children conference which was held at Bremen University, Bremen, Germany. I presented it within the Interactive Technologies for Special Needs Workshop organized by Dr. Juan Pablo Hourcade, Shuli Gilutz and Meryl Alpers. Heres a link to all the papers presented at the workshop.

The project was also presented at ICID: the International Conference on Interaction Design held at Hong Kong Polytechnic University in November 2011.

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Toy Development India



Supporting development of Assisstive technology (UK)


The Foundation for Assistive Technology was founded in 1998 to tackle the inadequate design of assistive technology products and services. The failure to develop a thriving market in equipment that meets the real needs of disabled and older people is a major barrier to independent living. With limited resources, FAST’s strategy for achieving maximum impact is to work at a national, strategic level to highlight the complex causes of this failed market and to bring the sector together to find innovative ways of working, in partnership with disabled and older people.

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

SCERTS model for autism

SCERTS® is an innovative educational model for working with children with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) and their families. It provides specific guidelines for helping a child become a competent and confident social communicator, while preventing problem behaviors that interfere with learning and the development of relationships. It also is designed to help families, educators and therapists work cooperatively as a team, in a carefully coordinated manner, to maximize progress in supporting a child.

The acronym “SCERTS” refers to the focus on:
“SC” - Social Communication – the development of spontaneous, functional communication, emotional expression, and secure and trusting relationships with children and adults;
“ER” - Emotional Regulation - the development of the ability to maintain a well-regulated emotional state to cope with everyday stress, and to be most available for learning and interacting;
“TS” – Transactional Support – the development and implementation of supports to help partners respond to the child’s needs and interests, modify and adapt the environment, and provide tools to enhance learning (e.g., picture communication, written schedules, and sensory supports). Specific plans are also developed to provide educational and emotional support to families, and to foster teamwork among professionals.

Friday, October 14, 2011

Usability Insight

This is an excerpt from the Wired article-

‘This Stuff Doesn’t Change the World’: Disability and Steve Jobs’ Legacy

Researcher Daniel Donahoo wrote about this admirably well in an op-ed for GeekDad in March:

"[T]he potential of the iPad is not achieved by the iPad alone, nor by simply placing it in the hands of a child with autism. The potential of the device is realized by the way professionals like speech pathologists, educators, occupational therapists and early childhood development professionals apply their skills and knowledge to use the iPad to effectively support the development of children. The potential is realized by engaged parents working with those professionals to explore how the device best meets the individual needs of their child."

Its a point that I have been thinking about a lot recently. Its why we need to not only do a research study of how the toys impact the children but also a usability survey of how it is used through interactions with others who are a part of their lives- therapists, teachers, family, freinds.

Thursday, August 18, 2011

My Keepon Toy

My Keepon also has the backing of one of the world’s largest toy stores, Toys “R” Us, which has the exclusive U.S. rights to sell the robot, originally a therapeutic tool for autistic children.

Keepon’s story begins about seven years ago with Hideki Kozima, a Japanese expert in artificial intelligence and robotics at the School of Project Design at Miyagi University. Kozima theorized that an emotive robot could help autistic children, who can be overwhelmed in face-to-face interactions, by reducing the complexities of communication to a few simple gestures. A child pats the robot on the head. It responds with a playful bob. The child talks to the robot. It turns to face him and nods.

For more...