LE AI Topics Sept 2022

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Hear this discussion from our Longevity Explorers — circles of older adults who meet monthly to explore solutions to the challenges that come with aging.

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from: Longevity Explorers | Robots, Smart Home, AI

Discussion Summary

The Longevity Explorer group for Robots, Smart Home, AI met for the 2nd time on Sep 21. About 21 participants were in attendance.


The group reviewed the goals of the circle and focussed on the following topics for the day:

1. Review of Survey and analysis collected over the summer by the leadership group.

2. Observed a demonstration of Dragon Voice control. Refer to audio clip from 8:42 to 28:10. Please use comments section at the bottom of this blog regarding any questions about Dragon Voice control 

3. Engaged in group discussion on Problem area: Emotional Well-being.

4. Decided next steps/format for meetings


Here are some of the important take-aways from the presentation:


Summer Survey and Analysis: 

The community submitted 60 possible products to evaluate and the leadership group analysed and grouped the products into Problem areas: 

  • Computer Input:How to Input Computer Data when you can’t use traditional input devices like a mouse. Example – Dragon Voice Control
  • Cognitive Assistance: Making complex technology easy for older to use. Example – Alexa Together
  • Emotional Wellbeing: How to Provide Companionship and Emotional Support to an Individual on their own. Example – Elliq
  • Independent Manipulation: How an individual can change or control their physical environment. Example – Kinova
  • Independent Mobility: How to allow individuals to move independently. Example – Scewo
  • Caregiver Burden: How to reduce the effort required by a caregiver. Example – Labrador Retriever


Of all the 6 problem areas, the group polled as follows for the area that most concerned the attendees on the call 

Topics of interest


And the order of topics they want to discuss



Problem Area Discussion: Emotional Well-being: 

The group engaged in a lively discussion regarding emotional well-being and explored the area using these questions as prompts:

  1. What personal experiences have you had with this problem either for yourself or someone close?
  2. Are you concerned you may have a problem in this area in the future?
  3. What experience have you gained in looking for solutions? 
  4. What criteria would you suggest be used in evaluating proposed solutions to address these problems?


Here is a summary of thoughts shared: Audio clip from 34:45 to 1:12



Live alone, house is remote, inability to drive will make things harder;

Family member in remote area, calling daily isn’t always enough to mitigate loneliness

Is co-housing/communal living an option?

What happens if the visitors are limited to institutional facilities. How does family mitigate loneliness for the loved one who is alone in the facility?

Zoom fatigue:Zoom may not always be a good option for social meetings; “fake” backgrounds are a problem for brains, lack of “real” things we’re seeing;

Some individuals may like being remote from their connections due to immune status

NOTE: OLLI: https://olli.sfsu.edu/ A participant shared this resource for learning based social gatherings

YouTube recommendations are AI influencing content we see when a pattern is established.

People need more than one “friend” if they’re virtual 

Hybrid meetings with both zoom and in-person are seeing challenges to keeping both in-person/and virtual people engaged.



Cohousing/planned mixed use communities/Villages concept

Housemates; Homeshare i.e. what about privacy issues; vetting “service”



Robots as companions

Replace the in person walk abouts in hybrid meeting with break outs for those online


Criteria to evaluate products that assist with emotional well-being:

Ease of learning/use; Intuitive interface; 

Standard actions ex. same keys do same things

Quality of teaching

Technical support

Encourages interaction; feedback loops

Ability to initiate contact 

Social usage, ex. quilting circles

Foundational principles “enforced” by the solutions; 



Next meeting logistics;

The group voted to repeat the process with each problem area

And meet monthly for 90 mins. 

Save the date: Next general meeting is to be held on Oct 18 at 12:30pm Pacific.





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