Yooom Poster - Difa - Design Innovation for Ageing

DEsigning AN
YoooM is a telepresence device developed by the company
PresenceDisplays. One of its main aims is to reduce loneliness
among elderly who suffer from immobility problems and whose
social networks have reduced. During this project however, it was
established that meeting ‘new’ people via YoooM was not facilitated
in a satisfying way, while this is an important part of reducing
loneliness. Therefore, the following design goal was formulated:
“Provide inviting opportunities to meet new
peers via YoooM, facilitate casual social (group)
interaction and encourage creating friendships.”
Literature research, interviews with the
target group and several usability studies
resulted in the design of a virtual park. In
this park, all online users are visible by
means of live streaming videos. In this
space, users can wonder around, approach
others and start a conversation similar to
interaction in real life. By viewing direct live
video images of all users and with the
possibility to overhear conversations, an
open, casual and trustworthy environment
is created. To offer conversation starters, or
the possibility to find people of similar
mindset, users’ interests are visualized
above their video frames. Furthermore, the
concept offers several functions, such as a
bulletin board to post messages on and a
search function which gives an overview of
all people present in the park. The my
groups menu stimulates regular meetings as
it offers the possibility to make
appointments with others.
When pressing on asomebody, this menu
appears. Among others, it offers the option to
block the video communication with this user or
to invite him for a private conversation.
The user is always
shown in the middle of
the screen. Moving
around is possible by
touching the desired
location at the screen.
A mini-profile shows
the interests of a user
in the form of a slide
show. Users can
choose to display a
simple icon, write a
personal text or add a
photo made directly
with the YoooM
Concept evaluations by users showed that
the design was appreciated. This included
the appearance, the offered functions and
its overall goal. Elderly with computer
experience clearly benefited from their skills
but the design was also indicated to be user
friendly by users with little experience. The
research results indicate feasibility which
leads to believe that the concept can be
turned into a successful product, being a
good step forward in the challenge of
reducing loneliness among elderly.
Anita van Schie
F. van Mourik
Designing an elderly community platform for a telepresence device
December 13, 2012
Design for Interaction
Dr. Z. Rusak
R. Smit
Sound intensity is based on the distance
between the sender and receiver, which enables
one-on-one conversations. At the same time, it
allows users to get an idea of the atmosphere
and conversation topic while approaching a
group, lowering the threshold to do so.
The interface offers six main menu buttons,
which allow access to the following functions:
adjusting one’s interests, searching people,
viewing the public bulletin board, correspond
with one’s groups, get help or exit the park.