Welcome to Elderly Computer
This site will take a look at computer hardware and software appropriate for the elderly and seniors. Although many elderly persons have adapted to modern computers, new technologies are available that may finally bridge the digital divide by providing an easy-to-use computer for the elderly. Stay tuned for reviews and thoughts on the burgeoning industry.
[ At Left: An example simplified Elderly Computer, by PointerWare Innovations Inc. ]
Root Causes: Why no Elderly Computers yet?
Why are computers so difficult to use? Often the overwhelming experience when dealing with computer technology is one of frustration. Computer interfaces are often confusing and arbitrary. Simple, routine tasks take great effort to do. Programs crash causing the loss of laboriously produced work. Incompatible versions will not read old data. And rapidly advancing technology leaves our equipment outdated in a short time, leading to feelings of inadequacy as the manufacturers try to convince us we need the latest models. Any benefits to our practices can be lost through frustration over difficulty using the technology to accomplish the tasks. The computer becomes the focus of our attention rather than the focal practice we my be trying to pursue through it.
Design is an iterative process. It takes multiple revisions to learn what works and what doesn't. In each revision it's natural to add new features but to keep your application simple you need to consider how you can rework and reduce these new features into existing concepts.