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Title: Ambient assisted living flexible interface (AALFI) : context aware flexible interface for ambient assisted living
Author: McNaull, James Robert
Awarding Body: University of Ulster
Current Institution: Ulster University
Date of Award: 2013
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Ambient Assisted Living (AAL) systems must strike a careful balance between interaction and automated assistance. This is particularly the case for older people, who may not have the skills for conventional interaction with computer interfaces. Findings show that current AAL systems do not specifically address the older person's auditory, visual or physical needs or support changes to these needs that result from the normal ageing process. The resulting interaction with these systems often provides information in a format that the older person finds difficult to interpret and utilise. This research proposes an Ambient Assisted Living Flexible Interface (AALFI) that is tailored to individual interaction requirements, and is capable of detecting the context associated with an event or activity. Previously identified limitations are overcome by the provision of two distinct forms of assistance: feedback designed to analyse recurring events in order to provide longer term assistance and intervention assistance designed to make the older person aware of urgent issues that require immediate action. During the implementation of AALFI the features and functionality were assessed by carrying out usability testing with 8 university students. These results were found to be positive as no major initial usability issues were found. Usability studies have been found to be useful in giving an indication on AAL system usability. AALFI was found to have good usability. This laid the foundations for further development and formal evaluation at a workshop at Age Northern Ireland, a group which champions the needs of the older person. AALFI was evaluated by 10 participants including older persons, care providers and health professionals. A final workshop, split between two sessions was conducted with the target demographic, older people and the results obtained provide further validation of the choices that have been made and assistance that is offered. The features, functionality and complexity of the assistance and interaction techniques were assessed by potential users and the underlying ideas behind the implementation were validated. Analysis of the results demonstrates that interactions between AALFI and the potential users are understandable and the assistance offered is timely, meaningful and worthwhile.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available