UB IDeA Center receives $4.6 million federal grant

The University at Buffalo’s Center for Inclusive Design and Environmental Access (IDeA Center) has received a fourth round of federal funding to continue its work on a wide range of ...
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the word disabled

Viewpoint: Is it time to stop using the word “disability”?

After running a campaign to urge toy manufacturers to include disabled characters in their collections, Rebecca Atkinson started to wonder if the word "disability" might also need a positive makeover ...
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silverware for people with dementia by eatwell

Silverware For People With Dementia By Eatwell Is Tailor Made For Impairments Caused By The Disease

Although many people associate dementia primarily with memory loss, those who have lost loved ones to the condition know that dementia can transform everyday tasks into major hurdles. Inspired by ...
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Students create accessible designs for disabled people at MIT's OpenStyleLab in Cambridge, Massachusetts.

Fashion-able: Innovators tackle clothing challenges for people with disabilities

"Your clothing vocabulary shouldn't be limited just because you have a certain physical condition." That is the mantra that Grace Teo and Alice Tin choose to live by after creating ...
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closeup of a collection of clothing for people who use wheelchairs being modeled

From Canes To Closures, Designing With Style For People With Disabilities

Think of all the accessibility amenities you've gotten used to seeing since July 26, 1990, the day the Americans with Disabilities Act was signed into law: Wheelchair ramps leading into ...
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smart watch

Smartwatches and apps can make life easier for children with autism or ADHD

Researchers believe that children with autism or Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) can benefit from technologies originally developed for older people. Welfare technology has long been associated with helping older people ...
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To appeal to baby boomers, make sure your product selections reflect universal, not institutional, design principles

Style is often the first consideration when it comes to selecting fixtures for the bathroom, but for the aging-in-place population, safety and convenience are also critical concerns. Fortunately, a renewed ...
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carbon black wheelchair

Carbon Black Wheelchair

You are unique and special, so why not choose a bespoke wheelchair that is as individual as you? Carbon Black is so different to every other wheelchair available on the ...
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close up of arc pen that can help patients with parkinson's disease write legibly

A Pen For People With Parkinson’s

Lucy Jung never thought much about designing for sick people. Then she was diagnosed with a brain tumor. She recovered, and the experience has driven her toward what she now ...
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ethan brown wearing a cyborg beat in black and red

Hand of a Superhero

Dawson Riverman’s parents tried to help him make the best of it. Born without fingers on his left hand, Dawson struggled to perform even the simplest tasks, like tying his ...
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close up of a person's arm with wrist watch and hand holding a smartphone

Wearable Tech for People With Disabilities

Tracking steps is nice, but helping people with disabilities navigate their worlds with ease and confidence is nicer. Alanna Kaivalya, 33, calls herself “the bionic woman.” The PhD student and yoga ...
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play equipment hanging in recreation room

Design for life. AKA design for: all, access, lifespan, universal, inclusive, adaptive and more

What parent hasn’t cursed steps and stairs as they’ve hauled a baby laden stroller up them? Or protected sharp corners from impact by a pre-schooler’s head? Who hasn’t slipped in ...
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close up on bionic eye being held by a woman whose face is blurred in the background

Augmented Reality With a Web-Cam Eye

Tanya Vlach is a near-fatal car accident survivor. This unfortunate event caused her to lose her left eye. Since 2011, she has been trying to raise both funds and awareness ...
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raku raku smartphone interface

Universal Design Meets High Tech

Smartphones, for better or for worse, have changed the world. Even a few decades ago, only the most visionary of science fiction writers would have thought we’d all be carrying ...
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California Companies Unveil Video Phone for People Who Are Hard of Hearing

Rocklin's Purple Communications, Inc. and Tely Labs of Menlo Park have created a smart videophone, SmartVP, which features HD and smart apps for people who are hard of hearing. Users ...
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morph wheels

The Morph Wheel – Travel with Ease

Originally designed to be used on a bicycle, the Morph Wheel is a foldable wheel compatible with any wheelchair that can accommodate a quick-release axle. When folded, the wheel is ...
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ocean wheelchair for paralyzed residents

Ocean Wheelchair for Florida Residents and Veterans

The city of Deerfield Beach, FL now has four new ocean wheelchairs -  wheelchairs that can travel on sand without getting stuck, and float in beach water. The floating wheelchairs ...
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man holding mouthstick in his mouth

Griffin unveils MouthStick stylus for the disabled

A new accessory has been created by Griffin for iPad users who have little to no fine motor skills. The MouthStick is a long, curved stylus designed to be held ...
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3d model of Tactile_Phone_Concept

Tactile Smartphone

Sumit Dagar, an Indian designer, is developing a tactile smartphone for people who are blind. The screen of the smartphone will be covered in pins that can be raised to ...
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video game controller

Disabled Gamer Creates Controller for People with Severe Spinal Cord Injuries

Luis Peña, a video game buff and a quadriplegic, is a former U.S. Border Patrol agent in Casa Grande. Injured on the job in 2007, he missed playing video games ...
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ipad on a stack of books

Study Finds that iPads Help People with Low Vision Read Better

At the American Academy of Ophthalmology annual meeting, researchers from the Robert Wood Johnson Medical School reported on a study that found that digital tablets improve reading speeds for people ...
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interface of wemo baby the iphone baby monitor app

WeMo Baby – The iPhone Baby Monitor

Belkin has made parenting a little more convenient with the new WeMo Baby iPhone Baby Monitor that turns your iPhone, iPad, or iPod Touch into a baby monitor. Setting up ...
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older woman interacting with a music memory box

Personalized Music Memory Box for People with Dementia

Chloe Meineck designed this Music Memory Box after studying the way that familiar music can help people with dementia connect with memories of their past. Meineck worked closely with her ...
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two wheelchair users being pushed through an airport

Some Exploit Airport Wheelchairs for Preferential Treatment

A recent article in the New York Times brought attention to the fact that some travelers abuse airport wheelchairs in order to get preferential treatment through long security lines or ...
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children playing soccer in a courtyard

Urban Lighting System

We often focus on mobility concerns when thinking about Universal Design, but perceptual concerns, like lighting, are just as important. Tom Jarvis, a Research Associate at the Helen Hamlyn Centre ...
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computer monitor showing BeClose interface

BeClose – New Technology for Aging-In-Place

Designed to address the common trend of seniors aging in place rather than in an assisted living community, BeClose uses motion sensors, which are compatible with beds, chairs, and doors ...
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u.s. department of labor

US Labor Department’s Office of Disability Employment Policy announces $950,000 grant to establish Accessible Technology Action Center

The U.S. Department of Labor's Office of Disability Employment Policy has announced a fund of $950,000 for grants that will be used to open and operate the Accessible Technology Action ...
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ambulance stretcher near the back of an ambulance van with doors open

Smart911 for Callers with Disabilities

Recently, a deaf woman lost her home and three pets to a fire. It remains unknown as to whether or not she called 911, however, her neighbors say that she ...
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close up image of an eye with a target radar interface

Device Lets Disabled Write or Draw Using Their Eyes

Jean Lorenceau of France's CNRS research institute has built a prototype device that enables people to write or draw on a computer screen using only their eyes. Cameras mounted on headgear ...
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close up image of E-Book on open book

Can E-Readers Ease Reading for People With Dyslexia?

Some studies suggest that e-readers may make reading easier for people with dyslexia. Instead of printing dyslexia-friendly special-editions, e-readers can allow users with dyslexia to determine their own settings to ...
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xbox play station

Aging In Place Center Uses Xbox Technology To Keep Seniors Safe

Some residents at the TigerPlace Aging-in-Place residences in Columbia, Missouri are taking part in a scientific experiment being conducted by researchers at the University of Missouri, who are using video ...
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closeup of woman legs at crosswalk

Timed Traffic Crosswalks Too Fast for Many Elderly: Study

A new British study published June 14 in the journal Age and Ageing found that the time given by automated crosswalks is often insufficient to allow older adults to cross ...
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finger on tactile touchscreen

Tactile Touchscreens

Two companies are developing different technologies that might soon make using your flat touchscreen a more tactile experience. Tactus Technology is developing buttons that rise up from the surface of ...
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axs map logo

AXS Maps

AXSMap is a crowd sourced accessibility map that allows people to share their reviews of the accessibility of local restaurants, stores, hotels, and other public venues. Once registered on the ...
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two researchers getting off the bus

Meet MIT AgeLab’s A.G.N.E.S

Ever met a youngster who complains more than an elderly person? The Age Lab at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology has created a unique suit called "Age Gain Now Empathy ...
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Claire Lomas Finishes The London Marathon Using The ReWalk

Claire Lomas Finishes The London Marathon Using The ReWalk

In an astounding feat of endurance and perseverance, 32-year old Claire Lomas became the first paralyzed person to complete a marathon using the ReWalk, a bionic suit that allows any ...
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older couple sitting on couch watching TV

Designing Technology for Older Adults

The Monitor has a wonderful interview with Wendy Rogers, PhD, director of the Human Factors and Aging Laboratory at Georgia Tech in Atlanta, describing how she understands the process of ...
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woman in action track chair closing car hood

Action Trackchair

The Action Trackchair is an off-road electric wheelchair for those who want greater access to outdoor activities like hunting, hiking, going to the beach, and fishing. The Action Trackchair uses ...
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chess board game for people with low vision

Chess for Persons With Seeing Impairment

Accessibility features are becoming more prominient and widely accepted in all aspects of life. From theatre to video games, product designers are recognizing the importance of inclusive design. Duncan McKean ...
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person sitting in a personal mobile vehicle

The New Revolutionary Wheelchair: Permoveh

The 4wd Permoveh wheelchair revolutionizes the wheelchair industry with it's omnidirectional wheels. Invented by a team of Kyoto University researchers under the guidance of Masaharu Komori, Associate Professor of Mechanical ...
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Caucasian smiling older man wearing headphones

SoundAmp Helps Persons Hard of Hearing

For just $0.99, a person who is both hard of hearing and an smartphone owner can be granted sound again. SoundAmp is a relatively new iPhone application that works by ...
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Scattered Videogames Gamepads of Many Brands

Global Game Jam Focuses on Accessible Gaming

The unfortunate reality is that the most popular game companies in the gaming industry don't always create games with accessibility in mind. With a goal to raise accessibility awareness within ...
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Blind person road traffic sign over clear blue sky

App Will Help People Who are Blind, Visually Impaired Navigate Streets

Researchers at the University of Minnesota are developing an app that would assist people who are blind and visually-impaired cross the street, informing users which direction they’re going, and how ...
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aerial view of magic music table

The Magic Music Table

On the website Instructablescom, which allows users to share what they make, user XenonJohn describes how he built the Magic Music Table. The device was designed to help a child ...
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the words "dyslexia typeface"

A Typeface for Dyslexics

Christian Boer, a typographer at the firm Studiostudio based in the Netherlands, has designed a special font for people with dyslexia. The font, called "Dyslexie," uses specially shaped letters to ...
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Earlier this year at the 2011 American Institute of Architects' (AIA) annual convention, plumbing giant TOTO conducted a 15-minute universal design experiential mini-course, hoping to give architects the opportunity to ...
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Pattie Moore, her normal appearance (to the left) and her disguised self as an 80-year old woman (right side)

Universal Design Pioneer: Why Design Still Excludes Many

Pattie Moore, a gerontologist who studies the social science of aging, designs products with older adults in mind. When Moore was 26 she disguised herself as an 80-year old woman ...
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a bollard and close up details of bollard design

Bollards – IRELAND 24-Hour Design Challenge

An urban navigation system won the Judges Award in the Centre for Universal Design Excellence first ever 24-Hour Design Award Challenge. The design contest consisted of five teams working with ...
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No Country for Old Men

Design firm L+W created the “No Country for Old Men” collection in 2012, which consists of Together – a set of walking aids and carts, Aussunta – a chair that ...
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person walking in a hallway with others siting the background
Recreation: A younger gentleman walking with an older man in the park
Public Buildings: aerial view of city buildings
Streets: people crossing an intersection
Housing: exterior view of a suburban house
Transportation: close up of dangling handles on a bus