Brainstorming, Unmet Needs, Ideation


On occasion, when we come across a "problem relating to aging that we wish someone would solve", our Longevity Explorers spend some time brainstorming possible solutions and fleshing out the details of the unmet need.


We have collected some of these brainstorming sessions here in one place, so that innovators looking for good ideas to work on can leverage our thoughts and ideas to help create useful solutions for older adults like our explorers.

You are welcome to learn from these sessions, and take advantage of them for your own projects. Tech-enhanced Life does not wish to assert any form of intellectual property ownership over the ideas themselves.

Of course, we think our community of Longevity Explorers can go much deeper into any of these topics, and add much more heft to any of these ideas if we give them the chance. We would welcome the opportunity to collaborate with any researchers or product developers who wish to use these brainstorming sessions as a springboard to further work. If you are interested in that, just reach out to us using the contact form at the bottom of the page.

Note: Some of these discussions require a "Researcher membership". Others are available for free, but you need to login to listen to the audio.



Featured Content: Brainstorming, Unmet Needs, Ideation


Intergenerational Design Opinions

What happens when you bring together a group of older adult Longevity Explorers and the teams participating in the Stanford Longevity Design Challenge? You get some interesting and contrasting opinions about what the differences should be between designing for a 25 year old and designing for an 85 year old.



Artificial Intelligence and Robots: What Older Adults Want

While there has been lots written by academics, companies, and futurists about the potential of robots and AI in aged care, the voice of the older adult is generally absent from these discussions. Here are the opinions of the Longevity Explorers as to problems they wish a robot, smarthome, or Artifical Intelligence could solve for them.



Staying Independent as an Older Adult: The Challenges

Staying "Independent" as long as possible is one of the most important priorities for many people as they age. But what do older adults really mean when they talk of being "independent", and what are the obstacles to staying independent?



From MD to Alexa Skills Developer: My Journey

Retired physician, Dr Bob Kolock, shares his new "hobby": Alexa Skills Developer. He describes how he came to be interested in Alexa, and describes some of the 13 skills he has developed. Many of these skills are useful for older adults, and Dr. Kolock's perspective from "both sides of the stethoscope" makes them especially intriguing.



Brainstorming an App for Loneliness

An App to Make New Friends: Intergenerational Brainstorming

Ever thought "I need to make new friends: There should be an app for that"? Longevity Explorers and design students brainstormed the features they would like to see in an "App to make new friends" at an intergenerational design workshop at the 2018 Stanford Centre on Longevity Design Challenge.



Ideas for Apps for Seniors

At a conference organized by San Francisco's Institute on Aging, I ran an interactive "exploration", in which we asked attendees to vote on "Senior Apps they Like", or to submit ideas they have for "There should be an App for that". We got quite a few interesting ideas, and this article reports the results of the session.



Co-creating the Future of Aging: First Steps

Last night we held the second meeting of the Meetup group: "Aging in Place technologies: collaboratively co-creating the future of aging". We wanted to attract people looking to roll up their sleeves and collaborate and actually work together on solving the challenges of aging, and that's exactly who came along. It was quite exciting.



Seniors & Communication: Plethora of Opportunity

On Tuesday, November 19, 2013 Tech-enhanced Life held a Design-the-Future Session with 12 residents who live in a retirement community for active, independent seniors in downtown San Francisco. The group included artists, fashion designers, market researchers, a former judge and other highly engaged and active seniors. The topic we discussed was communication: How to stay in intimate contact with people you love who live far away.



Featured Explorer Discussions:

Better Bra for Older Women

Our Longevity Explorers have been engaged in a brainstorming session about bra's for older adults — ignited by a challenge from explorer Marly.



I Want to Do My Own Driving Evaluation

Explorer Ron frames the question: "How does one decide whether or not to continue driving?" Should it be one's self, or someone else?



Explorers Conceptualize a Better Grabber

In this fun brainstorming session, explorers conceptualize in detail a more versatile 'reacher-grabber' tool than those which are currently available.



If I Had a Magic Wand, Here is What My Smarthome (Robot) Would Do to Help Me Stay Home Longer

'Blue Sky' thinking about the things that Explorers would like done for them by a Smarthome or domestic robot is off with a rush.



Brainstorming: Emergency Alert Pendants

Circle members participate in a lively discussion of 'what works and what doesn't' about their emergency call pendants. Numerous design flaws were identified, including: too large, not comfortable to wear, no voice communication channel, some 'dead zones' - even on campus. Seemingly, more would wear them with an enhanced sense of safety if some of their design ideas were adopted.



Flexible, Light-weight "Training Wheels" for Adult Bicycles

By: mfcpd

I would love to have relatively inexpensive traing wheels - for want of a better term - that I could retrofit onto my current two wheel bike (a Specialized roll with low entry) and have as a back0-up when I feel unsteady on my bike.  In other words, I would like to be able to apply and retract... Read More. Add your Opinions


Brainstorming: Better, More Frequent Connections to Friends

This is a brainstorming exercise between a group of Longevity Explorers and a group of students participating in the 2018 Stanford Longevity Design Competition.

We are brainstorming a "product to make connecting with friends more likely and more satisfactory".




Brainstorming Alexa: Use Cases for Older Adults

Saratoga Retirement Community Explorers brainstorm potential use cases for Alexa and the Amazon Echo, and conceptualize possible future Alexa skills for older adults..



Peripheral Neuropathy & Gait Inventions: EVC pt 2

These explorers talk about peripheral neuropathy, and gait improvement ideas, and they comment on their personal experiences with the condition.



Brainstorming Gadgets to Compensate for Peripheral Neuropathy Effects

Peripheral neuropathy, which is common, can cause difficulties walking and gait impairments. Explorer Lyle speculates "there should be a gadget for that" and the explorers brainstorm.



Hairdressing Station for Older Adults: Invention Needed

An Explorer from Pasadena Village writes in to say that her hairdresser has observed that many older adults have difficulty using the hair washing sink in hair salons. We discuss the topic and define what the problem is in some detail.



Agile Grabbers Invented, Demonstrated and Explored @ EVC

Explorer Lyle demonstrates using a grabber with soft pads in the grasping surfaces that is agile enough to pick up a slip of paper.



Brainstorming: Getting into the car more easily

At this months Aging in Place technologies Meetup we had a brainstorming session on aids for getting in and out of the car more easily when afflicted with some of the physical limitations that come with age. Listen to the entire discussion.



Brainstorming: PERS @ SRC

Members brainstormed the subject of what the perfect emergency call device would be like. From personal observation and experience, all joined in the discussion to compile an impressive list.



Older Adult Perspectives — Longevity Explorers Discuss:

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Last Updated: April 19, 2020.