We present the AGNES project, illustrating the design and development of new information technologies to stimulate and support the elderly in their everyday lives. The aim was to provide a feeling of connectedness and safety, sensory stimulation and an increased social network. AGNES provided user-sensitive home-based ICT-environments capable of detecting, communicating and responding to the elderly person’s needs and daily activities.
The approach included the unobtrusive detection of user states and activities, based on inexpensive mass-market components such as web-cams and mobile phones; a social networking technology platform specifically designed to meet the needs of, and be usable by, the elderly person, and providing the communications channel through which people and applications communicate; and ambient interaction devices for the display of information and events and for easy interaction with the home-based system and connected others.
For the success and relevance of such a project, it is vital to include the elderly users as active members of the project, and we outline our approach to this with user groups in Sweden, Spain and Greece.
AGNES is a first step in demonstrating that integrated innovative ICT solutions can produce beneficial effects on the cognitive wellbeing of elderly people by preventing social isolation and mental deterioration.
The 13th European Congress of Psychology, Stockholm, Sweden, 9–12 July 2013