Nov 1, 2011
The Experimental Design and Gaming Environments lab, or EDGE lab, at Ryerson University, works—among other things—on adaptive tech for children with disabilities. Like the High-Low Tech media lab group where I'm taking a course now, EDGE researchers are committed to democratizing materials for maximum customization and replicability. Following the example of the Adaptive Design Association in New York (I'll be posting about them soon!), they're making good use of cardboard and soft circuitry for all kinds of low-cost tools. Torontoist has a profile post:
From low-cost wearable garments for speech-impaired children—featuring squeezable buttons that talk—to discreet chair-top self-rocking devices for kids with autism, Nolan and company hope to see their low-cost, DIY designs spread.
"We hope everyone keeps sharing these ideas and continues to improve them with their own innovations," says Kenneally. "It's an exciting experiment in democracy!"
A customized chair for Zoe, who can use it to sit upright without adult or medical assistance.
Soft buttons that squeak when squeezed; a possible first iteration for wearable communication.
A customized cardboard alphabet.