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How does it work?

The AudioBench is an interactive ‘’talking’’ bench with digital sound quality.

Just rock the seat to generate electricity . No need for external power supply and no batteries inside. 100% Human Power.

After rocking this bench will immediately give you, for example,  information about your surroundings,  tell you short story’s or start playing music. With an USB stick inside its very easy to change the content if you want.

This bench is very attractive for children, adults and even elderly. The can be installed on playgrounds, (touristic)parks, nature  and (care) centers .

Custom:

It’s very easy to design your own concept! We can customize the content and simply adjust the seat to your own wishes. Small, large, wood, steel,  it is all possible.

  

After the good news that as Nijha’s partner, we won the SBIR innovation prize, we were excited to start work on a new product. Designing new products for inhabitants of care homes for the elderly is a great challenge. Many elderly face a lack of exercise movement. For Playnetic it is important to contribute to reducing this common problem and we will take every opportunity to do so.

Design with and for elderly people

Designing for the elderly is great. Designing with the elderly is even better! Who knows better than an elderly person what they like and what they can do and achieve still? To gain more insight into their preferences and physical limitations, we joined forces with Nijha to organize a number of test sessions in care homes. We invited the inhabitants to test our prototypes and to give us their unbridled opinions.

1,2,3…. Test

With all our human powered products, the user produces energy with body movements. The generated energy is then converted into lights, sounds or smells. The user has to maintain a certain movement long enough or quick enough to generate enough energy to ensure that this is converted into tangible results. For this reason it is very important for us to know what elderly people consider to be their own limitations. So we asked them to execute certain movements and put it to the test. If they generated enough energy, they were rewarded immediately with lights and sounds. Thanks to their determination, it turned into a colourful afternoon with lots of music.

‘’This is quite though, I will have to eat more beans’’ – inhabitant care home

From how the handles were held to the movement speeds and the response to the music, the sessions have provided valuable insight that will be used for further development of the human powered product range. The participants have surprised us with their enthusiasm, determination and perseverance. Their responses were truly heartwarming and this motivates us to develop more products that really make a difference in getting elderly people back in motion again.

‘’It was rewarding to see how my clients tested and interacted with the human powered products. I received a lot of positive feedback about the designs and designers. To me as therapist it was valuable to see the clients very  accommodating and enthusiastic about this novelty. One of my clients asked me: ‘‘Will you pick me up again next time? I would love to try more!’’ – Annelies Sijben, pyscho motor skills therapist

The next step

With the fresh insights and knowledge, Playnetic will now take the project to the next step, an exciting process in which designs will be finalized. Are you curious about the outcome and do you want to track the latest developments? Then subscribe to the news letter by sending an email to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or ask Nikki Woestenenk for more information. She can be reached on 0031 – 575 58586868 or email.

After the fun and inspiring test- and design sessions with care professionals and elderly people, it is now time to start drawing. The results and ideas that emerged during the sessions, will be developed into a design concept. Joost van Vliet is one of the designers at Playnetic. He is responsible for the design and look of the products. ‘This is an incredible challenge and I really enjoy working on this project. The elderly all have very different needs, looking at their pyshical abilities. They actually surprised me with what they still can and want to do. My view on elderly people has really changed’.

Practical experience indispensable in design process

The input of the test sessions, the feedback from the care professionals and the elderly, turned out to be priceless. Joost explains: ‘One thing that really stuck with me, is a conversation I had with one of the care professionals. She told me I should try to add a bit of competition. I never expected this to be of added value for elderly people but during the tests, I truly noticed how competitive the participants get. Every single person involved wanted to win by generating the most human power. And it’s because of this input and experience that we have designed products that allow people to compete’.

More than a pretty design

Creating a good design is a lot more than just having a good idea or a pretty drawing. It requires thinking about how the final product will look, what materials to choose, ease of use and how to make the product. ‘It is challenging to design products that are low key and accessible to both the elderly and their care professionals’ according to the designer. ‘This should be second nature in order to successfully design a product’. Four products shall be designed during the project. Although these products all have human power as common factor, each product is designed separately. Designer Joost is under pressure to design four individual products with each their own character and look, whilst remaining recognizable as part of the same product range.

‘What I hope to achieve with our products? I have big dreams! I hope that our products will take down the barriers in movement deficiency and loneliness amongst the elderly, and build bridges between generations’ – Joost van Vliet, designer Playnetic

The work continues, from paper to real life

At this stage, all of a sudden, the concept comes to life. We are now getting a good view of what the end product will look like. This boosts our enthusiasm. We are very excited to start the next phase; building the prototypes and start testing the products. Are you also curious about the progress and our first test results? Keep an eye on our website or subscribe to our special SBIR newsletter by sending an email to: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

 

  • Dutch people and football, perhaps the best combination there is. Children love to kick the ball!

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