Iterative user involvement in ambient assisted living research and development processes
Does it really make a difference?
This chapter is based on results from the European research project SOPRANO which is developing supportive environments for older people based on the concept of Ambient Assisted Living (AAL). The project adapts and applies Experience and Application Research (E&AR) methods involving active participation of older users throughout an iterative development and design process. Innovative participatory methods enable developers to thoroughly focus on the users when defining the system requirements, generating design solutions and evaluating these design solutions in both lab and real life settings. The example chosen to best demonstrate how the character and detail of user ideas changed in the different stages of the R&D process is the development of an exercise support system applying an avatar showing the exercises on the TV in the home of an older person.