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Older adult requirement data - what designers want!

Carse, Bruce and Thomson, Avril and Stansfield, Ben (2009) Older adult requirement data - what designers want! In: Include 2009, 2009-04-06 - 2009-04-08.

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Abstract

It is well recognised that many products do not meet the requirements of the rapidly growing older adult population. The research described in this paper aims to provide designers with relevant and useable older adult requirement data. Data relating to older adults capabilities is being produced largely by the biomechanics community however, there is little evidence of its adoption in the design of everyday products. This project focused specifically on the design of everyday consumer packaging. Poorly designed packaging can present a significant barrier to achieving one of the most important basic activities of daily living - being able to feed oneself. Initially, a study of practicing packaging designers was conducted to establish how they currently design for older adults, what data they use and why. Relevant "new" design data was developed from biomechanical analysis undertaken in this project. This was presented to packaging designers in a series of interviews which established exactly what data designers want and the best formats for integration in the design process. This paper focuses on the findings of the initial study of practicing designers and the follow up interviews.